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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Minneapolis VA studies invisible scars from combat

By Jeremy Olson
The Star Tribune
Updated August 11, 2014

Here is an excerpt:

A study of survey results for 814 Minnesota National Guard members who served in Iraq over the past decade showed that those who experienced moral injury had higher levels of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Moral injury generally refers to any type of guilt, shame, or depression that arises from actions that may have violated deeply held beliefs. But for this study, which was presented at the Minneapolis VA Medical Center last month, soldiers met the criteria if they killed in combat, felt their actions were unforgivable, and believed that God had abandoned them.

The lack of resiliency among soldiers who met this definition was alarming, said Dr. Irene Harris, the VA psychologist leading the research. “Basically, [they feel] at my spiritual functioning level, I don’t think I belong here in the world. I’m not worth it. I have a sense that I should not be here.’’

The entire article is here.

Podcast Episode 7: The Moral Self, Moral Injury, and Moral Emotions addresses the moral self and moral injury related to PTSD.