“I was their worst nightmare”: The identity challenges of military widows
Bereaved spouses reconstruct their identities to make sense of changes in how they understand themselves after loss. For military spouses, identity reconstruction might be particularly challenging since they must also manage changes in their military status. This study included interviews with bereaved U.S. military spouses (N = 9) about their experiences managing identity. Results indicate that participants experienced shifting identities. Individuals managed (a) multiple, conflicting identities and (b) the loss of identities. Findings suggest that participants’ military status added a layer of identity reconstruction, making grief more complex. These results offer insight into how military survivors reconstruct identity following loss.
Wehrman, Erin C. "'I was their worst nightmare': The identity challenges of military widows." Death studies (2019): 1-11.