A new study from Syracuse’s Institute for Veterans and Military Families suggests that psychological treatment for spouses and children of veterans with PTSD may reduce the stresses and trauma on the family–and therefore, have a positive influence on veterans’ health.
Click here or on the picture below for this article from Stars and Stripes.
Thirty Days with My Father: Finding Peace from Wartime PTSD (forthcoming November 2012 from Health Communications, Inc.) by Christal Presley is a moving personal journey of the devastating effects the Vietnam War had on a family when a father returned home with PTSD. This memoir reveals how one daughter and her soldier-dad faced their demons of post-war trauma in a series of thirty-day conversations.
Visit Christal’s author website for more information–and to read an excerpt.
This article, written by the National Center for PTSD, explores research findings about how families are affected by deployment and return from deployment.
This article from CBC/Radio-Canada makes some interesting connections between the secondary trauma of children of Holocaust victims and children of war veterans.
In this full PDF article originally published in Development and Psychopathology in 2001, authors Rachel Yehuda, Sarah Halligan, and Robert Grossman conclude that in intergenerational PTSD (the transmission of PTSD from parent to child), childhood trauma may be an important factor.
The article, “Childhood Trauma and Risk for PTSD: Relationship to Intergenerational Effects of Trauma, Parental PTSD, and Cortisol Excretion,” can be accessed by typing the name of the article into Google, scrolling past the abstracts to the PDF version, and downloading the file.
This article from American Journal of Orthopsychiatry is a review of the literature on intergenerational transmission of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from fathers to sons in families of war veterans. The review addresses several questions: (1) Which fathers have a greater tendency to transmit their distress to their offspring? (2) What is transmitted from father to child? (3) How is the distress transmitted and through which mechanisms? And finally, (4) Which children are more vulnerable to the transmission of PTSD distress in the family?
You can access this article, “Is There Intergenerational Transmission of Trauma? The Case of Combat Veterans’ Children,” through a university library, or pay $29.95 to download it at this address: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1037/a0013955/abstract
Here is more information about the article that may be helpful if you access it through a university library:
American Journal of Orthopsychiatry
Volume 78, Issue 3, July 2008, Pages: 281–289, Rachel Dekel and Hadass Goldblatt
Publication Date: March 2010
Veterans’ Children is the first community and support organization to address the generational consequences of living with war trauma- from World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, to our present wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The purpose of their website is to serve as a resource for healing and a forum for sharing stories.
On his website, Inheriting the Vietnam War Legacy, researcher Dr. Ken O’Brien summarizes his theory that genetics–or more precisely, epigenetics–play a role in the intergenerational transmission of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
In “Experts Watching Mental Health of Army Children,” the Army reveals that how soldiers’ stress levels affect their children is an underresearched area.
In her memoir, Falling through the Earth, Danielle Trussoni returns to Vietnam to explore the country where her father fought, as she explores memories of her childhood and how the war affected her family.
This article, “Talks with Dad Ease Vietnam Scars,” explores how my Vietnam veteran father’s symptoms of PTSD affected me, and chronicles our journey of reconciliation.
This article, “Soldiers’ Children are War Victims, Too,” focuses on secondary or intergenerational PTSD in children of war veterans, and provides current statistics on war’s effect on mental health.
This abstract of “Transgenerational Transmission of Cortisol and PTSD Risk” published by Rachel Yehuda and Linda Blerer in Progress in Brain Research (2007), reports that adult children of Holocaust survivors with PTSD have a greater prevalence of PTSD themselves. The full-text PDF version of this article is available for purchase on the website above.
This fact sheet explores how a parent’s PTSD symptoms may affect his or her children:
What does war-related intergenerational Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) mean to you? Click the Comments link below for thoughts from our readers, and feel free to post your own.