Date of Conferral
The purpose of this qualitative phenomenological research study was to determine the psychological and emotional effects of female deployment on male spouses. The current research was designed to study the emotional and psychological experiences of male spouses of deployed women. The research question was focused on understanding the lived experience of the male spouses of their deployed active duty wives. The intent was to describe male spouses' lived experiences, focusing on mental health, physical health, marital problems, caregiving, and other reintegration related problems as well as the role transfer stress experienced by these male spouses of deployed wives. Gender role theory was the theoretical framework chosen for this study to understand role transfer issues faced by the male spouse of a deployed woman. Fifteen male spouses were interviewed in 1-on-1 interviews to gain knowledge of their emotional and psychological stressors related to spouse deployment. The interview data were analyzed for common themes of their lived experiences. The results of the data were greater understanding of the male spouses lived experiences of being a spouse of an active duty deployed spouse, as well as how better to help this population. The study highlights the understanding that the experiences of the spouse of a deployed service member is critically important for the government and society alike. Civilian husbands of deployed military women have unique gender-specific needs which are poorly addressed, leading to unnecessary marital tension for all parties. Implications for positive social change included findings that provided insight needed to assist the male spouse of a deployed woman.