Children Coping With Military Deployment Essay

1729 words - 7 pages

The children in military families face daily challenges because of deployment to war. Some do not understand why their parent has to leave, how long they will be gone or where they are going. The effects of deployment on children differ from the age they are. For example, an infant is going to act completely different than a teenager. Depending on the child they may feel unsecure because their comfort level has changed once their parent, guardian or older brother or sister has left. These people may be the only people around their house that they can trust. There is many different factors in how your child will react during the deployment process. You have to mentally and physically ...view middle of the document...

The younger the child, the more difficult it will be for them to understand why the parent is leaving or even what it will be like when the parent leaves to go overseas.
Deployment consists of both men and women who leave their families and homes with other soldiers and go to another country and earn combat pay. Combat pay is a tax-free form of compensation paid to the members of the armed forces who are on active duty in a designated combat zone or hazardous area. Combat pay includes active duty pay, dislocation allowances, reenlistment bonuses, achievement awards and other miscellaneous types of compensation that are paid as a result of military service. Deployments can last anywhere from ninety days to fifteen months. The remaining caretaker of the children at home struggles with their own grief while they are taking on the new responsibilities and routines. Despite what anybody tells their children about the reason for deployment, many children especially younger children may feel guilty thinking that is something that they did that resulted in their parent leaving them. The sense of separation and the loss remains the same, however, as does the need to continue to provide special support for children.
The final phase of the deployment cycle is lastly the reunification phase. This is the happiest phase families and children will face but also one of the most home wrecking. The reunion is typically met with the initial feeling of extreme joy, but as the excitement fades it is often replaced with many mixed emotions from every single person in the family. The extreme joy of having this family member home after ninety days to fifteen months. The children feel happy about the safe return of their family member, whether it be a parent or older sibling. Families go through a tremendous amount of stress when the family member returns from other routines resulting in Posttraumatic Stress Disorder. A major challenge for both the family and children is to bring some stability for the family with the respect to roles and routines.
In research conducted at the Public Safety Academy, it was found that twenty- six percent of our students that make up our school, have parents, guardians, or older brothers or sisters in the armed forces or they were in the armed forces. Not all of them were deployed but they all had a taste of what it is like to have a loved one go away for a little bit of time when each of their loved ones went away for basic training. Only some of our students have a taste of what it is like for family members or loved ones who live with them in their homes to be deployed or have been deployed, whether it was in 2012 or 2002. Our school, Public Safety Academy consists of about four hundred students in the school year of 2013-2014. Within the one hundred and three students that have family in the military or have had family in the military, that percentage was split up into six different categories: five for the branches of the...

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