When war comes to men's lives: life-course patterns in family, work, and health

Psychol Aging. 1994 Mar;9(1):5-16. doi: 10.1037//0882-7974.9.1.5.


Men generally come to military service at a time of youth. However, the Second World War expanded the period of service eligibility from age 18 to the late 30s. Each year of delay in entry promised a smaller return from military service (economic and job benefits) and a greater risk of life disruption and related costs. Using longitudinal data from the Stanford-Terman sample, the authors examine whether social disruptions resulting from late service entry increased the risk of adverse change in adult health. Apart from preservice factors, the authors found that the late-mobilized men were at greatest risk of negative trajectories on physical health. Work-life disadvantages account in part for this health effect. Pathways that link stress and physical decline are discussed in relation to social disruption.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aging / psychology*
  • Career Mobility*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Family / psychology*
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Geriatric Assessment*
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Psychophysiologic Disorders / psychology
  • Risk Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Somatoform Disorders / psychology
  • Veterans / psychology*
  • Warfare*