Chapter

Veterans’ Appraisals of the Impact of the War on Their Lives 10-Plus Years After the War Ended

Bruce P. Dohrenwend, Thomas J. Yager, Yuval Neria, J. Blake Turner, Nick Turse, Randall Marshall, Roberto Lewis-Fernández and Karestan C. Koenen

in Surviving Vietnam

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print September 2018 | ISBN: 9780190904449
Published online November 2018 | e-ISBN: 9780190904470 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/med/9780190904449.003.0011
Veterans’ Appraisals of the Impact of the War on Their Lives 10-Plus Years After the War Ended

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This chapter presents findings that the large majority (between 61.8% and 70.9%) of U.S. male veterans in the NVVRS sample appraised the impact of Vietnam service on their personal lives as mainly positive, and that negative appraisals, especially those with high salience (i.e., importance), are strongly associated with PTSD onset and current PTSD. A substantial minority (41.7%) judged the effects to be highly salient in their present lives. It investigates the valence and salience of these appraisals in relation to PTSD and other indicators of wartime and post-war functioning. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that mainly positive appraisals are affirmations of successful wartime and post-war adaptation rather than defensive denials related to maladaptive outcomes. It discusses the possibility that mainly positive appraisals, especially those with low salience, also contribute to successful post-war adaptation.

Chapter.  7044 words. 

Subjects: Psychiatry

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