TitleLeisure Experiences of Military Couples Postdeployment
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsChandler, KD, Dattilo, J, B. Taff, D, Moeller, J
JournalFamily Relations
Issue11-2324
Date Published06/2018
Abstract
 

Objective

This qualitative study was designed to explore how leisure is experienced by military couples postdeployment and the extent to which couples use leisure to cope with deployment or promote reintegration.

Background

To date, many studies have investigated how deployment affects relationship quality and stability. There is a dearth of literature on the leisure experiences of combat veterans and their spouses. Studying couples' leisure experiences may illuminate underlying processes that can explain couple relationship quality postdeployment.

Method

Ten combat veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom or Operation Enduring Freedom (OIF/OEF) and their spouses/partners participated in separate in‐depth, face‐to‐face interviews about their perceptions of leisure and relationship experiences postdeployment.

Results

Four themes emerged: (a) deployment changes veterans and couples' leisure, (b) spouses support leisure and reintegration postdeployment, (c) leisure provides insight into military and deployment experiences, and (d) deployment helps couples cultivate appreciation.

Conclusion

This study provides evidence that everyday couple leisure experiences (e.g., watching movies, doing home projects) may be integral in fostering reintegration postdeployment.

Implications

Practitioners are encouraged to educate military couples about the potential of free or inexpensive leisure experiences to promote reintegration by providing daily opportunities for positive interactions and creating contexts to share enjoyable moments.

URLhttps://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/fare.12321
DOI10.1111/fare.12321
Short TitleFam Relat