In recent years, the popularity of web blogs has increased, thus presenting the opportunity for people’s personal experiences and viewpoints to be heard. Amidst this rising popularity, a slew of military blogs, known as “milblogs” for short, have emerged. These offer exclusive insight into the difficulties experienced by our veteran population. Veterans are blogging from the battlefield as well as from their homes about their personal experiences with deployment, returning home, and issues that have arisen due to their service. One of the most popular topics found in these “milblogs” is Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). A content analysis was conducted of blogs written by military personnel and their families. Military personnel were defined as anyone in the reserves, active duty, or retired. The unit of analysis was single milblog posts making references to PTSD-like symptoms. The goal of this study was to examine how veterans self-report their daily experiences of PTSD symptoms in their blogs and to compare these self reports with criteria noted in the DSM IV-TR using a PTSD Checklist – Military Version. Another aim of this study was to examine the reports of their spouses/partners’ experiences living with veterans who suffer from PTSD and determine if they confirm similar symptoms as reported in the milblogs. It was found that the most common symptoms clinically associated with PTSD were accurately represented in the milblogs. However, the personal views and insights into PTSD symptoms offered by the milblogs are invaluable and deserve further research.
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Wireman, Emily B., "A Comparative Look at Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: Empirical Data vs. Personal Soldier Blogs" (2013). Honors Theses. 86.