Introduction: Military Families under Stress: What We Know and What We Need to Know

  • Elaine WillertonEmail author
  • Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth
  • David Riggs


This volume is the product of an invited symposium of scholars studying issues relevant to military families. The impetus for organizing the symposium and producing this volume was the belief that together we could teach one another and then strategize about the most pressing issues facing military families. Beyond that, we wanted to stimulate multidisciplinary scholarly discussion in order to deepen our mutual understanding of military families and generate strategies for the pressing challenges they face. We intentionally cast a wide net. Represented at the symposium were leading military and civilian scholars from family studies, child development, medicine, marriage and family therapy, and psychology. This chapter outlines how far we have come in our knowledge of issues related to military families and the areas in greatest need of attention as the war continues to place heavy demands on service members. In line with the symposium, this volume focuses on four aspects of military family life: marital and family functioning, parenting and child outcomes, family sequelae of wounds and injuries, and single service members. In this chapter we preview each of the chapters in the volume and summarize the recommendations of symposium attendees regarding the most urgent needs for future research and training.


Family Functioning Ptsd Symptom Service Member Military Family National Guard 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elaine Willerton
    • 1
    Email author
  • Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth
  • David Riggs
  1. 1.Military Family Research InstitutePurdue UniversityWest LafayetteUSA

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