TABLE 7-1 Marital and Family Conflict


Study Design






Jordan et al. 1992

Cross-sectional survey, NSVG

871 male Vietnam theater veterans without PTSD vs 319 with PTSD from the NSVG

Marital and family-adjustment patterns associated with PTSD prevalence

Men with PTSD are more likely to report: marital or relationship problems; higher levels of parenting problems; higher levels of family violence



-nationally representative population

-deployed vs nondeployed status

-plethora of measures and interview

-long-term effects

(Derived from NVVRS)

Measures included

-Mississippi Scale for Combat-Related PTSD, DIS-PTSD module, and detailed assessment of exposure to traumatic events

-Parental Problems Index

-Level of Functioning Index

-Family-Violence subscale of CTS

-Index of Subjective Well-Being

-PERI Demoralization Scale

-Social Isolation Index

-alcohol problems

-nervous breakdown

-Child Behavior Checklist

252 spouses or partners of veterans without PTSD vs 122 spouses of veterans with PTSD

Partners and spouses of theater veterans with PTSD were significantly more likely to report lower levels of happiness and life satisfaction and to have higher demoralization scores than spouses or partners of theater veterans without PTSD


-study was conducted 15 years after Vietnam War ended

-no adjustments

Children of veterans with PTSD were substantially more likely to have a problem score in the clinical range than children of veterans without PTSD

McCarroll et al. 2000

Cross-sectional survey in 1990-1994

Randomized sample of 11,541 GW-deployed vs 15,294 nondeployed married active-duty Army men and women (95% men, 5% women)

Probability of spousal aggression in association with deployment

Probability of severe aggression in preceding year significantly greater in deployed (4.25%-4.95%) vs nondeployed soldiers (3.67%)

Age, race, sex, rank, and number of children living with respondent

Causal relationship between deployment and spousal aggression cannot be determined

CTS to measure self-reports of behaviors exhibited in marital conflict

Probability of severe aggression increased with length of deployment from 15.8% (< 3 months) to 34.9% (6-12 months)

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