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Frontline Reports   |    
STRoNG Intervention for Military Families With Young Children
Katherine L. Rosenblum, Ph.D.; Maria Muzik, M.D.
Psychiatric Services 2014; doi: 10.1176/appi.ps.650302
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The authors are with the Department of Psychiatry and Depression Center, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (e-mail: katier@med.umich.edu).

Copyright © 2014 by the American Psychiatric Association

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Military families face unique challenges. Although many exhibit remarkable resilience in the face of hardship, a steep rise in rates of divorce, child behavior problems, and parental mental illness during and after deployment highlights the need for family support. Approximately 40% of children in military families are under age five. Separation from one parent, coupled with heightened distress of the parent left behind, places young children at risk. Reunification poses challenges as well, including the need to reestablish relationships, roles, and routines and to accommodate combat-related injuries or illness. As one father in our program shared, “He was born, and I was deployed before he was walking. And when I came back, he was standing, gripping onto (his mother’s) leg—looking at me like, ‘That’s who?’ She had to tell him, ‘That’s Daddy.’ ” Another father commented, “When I came back, it was difficult . . . trying to find that closeness and trying to find that reconnect.” Thus the challenges faced by military families during this unique period require special attention and support.

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