This study explored former combat soldiers’ self-descriptions of being “broken.” All participants were solicited with a request to discuss their understanding, personal meanings, and events that led them to feeling broken. Participants were required to have deployed to either Iraq or Afghanistan and to have referred to themselves as being broken.
A grounded theory design was used to capture the complexities of the participants’ combat and post combat experiences. Fifteen men volunteered to participate in up to four interviews.
Data analysis revealed six categories which were broken down into the five findings: Numbness results in withdrawal from relationships and social engagement; Experiencing death, witnessing death or injuries of people close to them, and realizing that they could get killed at any time; Idealization of command is promoted, but is invariably ruptured; Survival guilt is bad news; and Physically broken, mentally broken, and emotionally broken. Also addressed was the distinctive process that unfolded as the participants engaged the researcher around the exploration of being broken. Theoretical, research, and clinical implications are discussed.
|School:||Institute for Clinical Social Work (Chicago)|
|Department:||Clinical Social Work|
|School Location:||United States -- Illinois|
|Source:||DAI-A 82/2(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Social work, Clinical psychology|
|Keywords:||Soldiers , Feel broken, Post combat|
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