Transgenerational effects of abusive violence on the children of Vietnam combat veterans

Authors

  • Robert Rosenheck,

    Corresponding author
    1. Northeast Program Evaluation Center, VAMC, West Haven, Connecticut
    2. Yale University Department of Psychiatry, New Haven, Connecticut 06250
    • Northeast Program Evaluation Center, VAMC, 950 Campbell Avenue, West Haven, Connecticut 06516
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  • Alan Fontana

    1. Northeast Program Evaluation Center, VAMC, West Haven, Connecticut
    2. Yale University Department of Psychiatry, New Haven, Connecticut 06250
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Abstract

This study examined the relationship between participation in abusive violence in Vietnam and behavioral disturbances among children aged 6-16 in the next generation. As part of the National Vietnam Veterans Readjustment Study (NVVRS) detailed data were obtained on a national sample of male veterans who were living in households with children aged 6-16 (N = 257). Interviews with spouses/partners were used to evaluate current family relationships and child behavior. Children of veterans who participated in abusive violence showed more behavioral disturbance than children of other Vietnam veterans even after multivariate analysis was used to adjust for other factors such as PTSD symptoms, combat exposure, and postmilitary family relationships. Participation in abusive violence appears to affect parent-child relationships in a way that adversely influences children living at home.

Ancillary