Master of Social Work
School for Social Work
US veterans, Substance use/misuse, Addiction, Recovery, Moral injury
This explorative/descriptive study investigates veterans’ stories of substance use/misuse, recovery, and moral injury. 12 male veterans participated in semi-structured interviews and answered questions about how their motivations for substance use/misuse and recovery changed prior to, during, and after their military service. Participants were also asked if they experienced moral injury while in the military, and if this precipitated or motivated substance use/misuse. The purpose of this study was to determine how the military impacts a veteran’s substance use/misuse and recovery. Qualitative research on moral injury is minimal, and this study aimed to address that gap in the literature. The study found that a majority of participants increased their substance use/misuse during and after military service, and that a majority of combat veterans experienced moral injury, noting that their substance use/misuse was motivated by their moral injury experiences. Implications for social work policy, practice, and future research are discussed.
©2018 Chelsea Faria.
Faria, Chelsea, "Veterans' stories of substance use, recovery, and moral injury : an exploratory study" (2018). Masters Thesis, Smith College, Northampton, MA.