Families of returned defence force personnel: a changing landscape of challenges

David Berle*, Zachary Steel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: This paper aims to identify the key challenges experienced by the families of defence force personnel following deployment.

Method: We undertook a selective review of four post-deployment challenges to the families of defence force personnel: (1) changes to relationships; (2) changes to family member roles and responsibilities; (3) adjustment of children and parenting challenges; and (4) anger, family conflict and violence. Emerging issues in the area of post-deployment adjustment are also discussed.

Results: Empirical studies of post-deployment family adjustment are lacking. Each of the reviewed challenges can contribute to psychological difficulties and precipitate contact with mental health services.

Conclusions: The challenges faced by defence force personnel when returning from deployment arise within a family context. Clinicians should thoroughly assess these factors in families following deployment, but also recognise family strengths and resilience to these challenges.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)399-402
Number of pages4
JournalAustralasian Psychiatry
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • veterans
  • reintegration
  • military
  • family
  • parenting
  • deployment


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