NYT: How 'surge' will affect military marriages
The New York Times reports that for many soldiers, "the repercussions, chaos and loneliness of wartime deployments are one of the toughest, least discussed byproducts of the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan."
Time spent away from spouses and families has "left a trail of badly strained or broken unions, many severed by adultery or sexual addictions; overburdened spouses, some of whom are reaching for antidepressants; financial turmoil brought on by rising debts, lost wages and overspending; emotionally bruised children whose grades sometimes plummet; and angst-ridden parents who at times turn on each other," writes Lizette Alvarez.
Excepts from the article below:
The situation is likely to grow worse as the military increases the number of troops in Iraq this year. The Pentagon announced Wednesday that it is planning to send more than 14,000 National Guard troops back to Iraq this year, causing widespread concern among reservists. Nearly a third of the troops who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan have done more than one tour of duty.
Hardest hit are the reservists and their families, who never bargained on long absences, sometimes as long as 18 months, and who lack the support network of full-fledged members of the military.
Even many active-duty military families, used to the difficulties of deployments, are reeling. For the first time since the Vietnam War, soldiers are being sent again and again to dangerous war zones, with only the smallest pause in between. The unrelenting fear of death or injury, mental health problems, the lack of recuperative downtime between deployments and the changes that await when a soldier comes home hover over every household.
READ THE FULL NY TIMES ARTICLE HERE