Couple Adjustment and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Symptoms in National Guard Veterans of the Iraq War

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Abstract

Relationship adjustment and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms were assessed across two time points in a sample of 313 married or partnered National Guard soldiers recently returned from combat duty in Iraq. Structural equation modeling using a four-factor model for PTSD found the latent variable dysphoria (reflecting generalized distress including aspects of emotional numbing and arousal) had the strongest independent contribution to predicting relationship adjustment at Time 1 and indirectly predicted poorer relationship adjustment at Time 2. Exploratory analysis of gender differences (n = 33 women; n = 280 men) suggested a different pattern of relations between PTSD factors and relationship adjustment among female soldiers at Time 1, with a trend toward trauma specific avoidance being more highly related to relationship adjustment. Clinical and research implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)479-487
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Family Psychology
Volume25
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2011

Keywords

  • Couple adjustment
  • Dysphoria
  • PTSD
  • Veteran mental health
  • War/armed conflict in military role

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