Do deployments increase child abuse and neglect?


Have you seen all of the news surrounding a newly published study in regards to Army Families?  The study which says "Combat-Related Deployments Responsible for Increased Child Abuse, Neglect Among Army Families."

The study appears in Journal of the American Medical Association's 1 August issue and can been seen here.

Other articles discussing the study can be viewed via the links below.

Combat-Related Deployments Responsible for Increased Child Abuse, Neglect Among Army Families - RTI

Military Deployment and Child Maltreatment - Journal Watch

Study: Child Abuse by Moms in Army Families Rises When Fathers Deployed - AP via Fox

Child abuse more likely during deployments - Army Times

Stress of war hits Army kids hard - USA Today

Have you blown your lid yet or do you think that the study results are not surprising?

On a personal note - The majority of mothers that I came in contact with (and continue to come in contact with) during deployments, went overboard in the opposite direction from what this study suggests - to care for their children more than ever, to address their children(s) needs during the service member's deployment and to ask for a bit of help when they needed an "adult mental health break" during the deployment. I still feel that the majority of military parents are good, loving and caring parents and do the best that they can by their children. I still feel that the majority of military parents do not commit child abuse in any form or fashion.

I will simply say that if you feel that you need help as a military parent, please seek help. Children are truly precious gifts. 

The Army offers many programs to help military parents.  You can contact your local installation Army Community Service office for help and details or view them here.  You can also seek help and/or information via My Army Life Too and Military OneSource.  The New Parent Support Program is also very supportive.  And don't forget that as a military spouse, you have many counseling options available.What are your thoughts on this topic and the study?  Do your experiences echo the study results or have you experienced things in a vastly different way?  Chime in with your opinions and thoughts, no matter your service affiliation.

UPDATE:  You can listen to a podcast on this issue from The National Defense Radio here.

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