Dissertation Title:

An Exploration of Human Connection and its Relation to Veteran Dis-ease


Adrian Campbell

Date, Time & Place:

August 16, 2021 at 1:00 pm


Upon separation from service, many military veterans experience high levels of stress as they lose their connection to the tightly bonded, and intentionally collective, military culture.  This psychological stress may manifest in symptoms leading to diagnoses of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, or anxiety, and often includes comorbid somatic symptoms, such as chronic pain. This research explores the connection between the experience of separation and the psychological, physiological, and somatic symptoms of PTSD, depression, anxiety, and chronic pain. Through the process of narrative inquiry and use of a holistic mind-body lens centered in depth psychology, the lived experience of separation is explored in veterans representing each branch of the United States Military. The findings highlight the significance of the human connections made during military service, the somatization of unacknowledged loss and grief, the importance of community support, and the role separation from significant attachments plays in regard to veteran dis-ease, both during and after their military service ends.

  • Program/Track/Year: Depth Psychology emphasis in Somatic Studies, S, 2014
  • Chair: Dr. Elizabeth Nelson
  • Reader: Dr. Sabine Oishi
  • External Reader: Dr. Erik Goodwyn
  • Keywords: Veteran, Transition, Somatic, Connection, Relationship, Depression, PTSD, Anxiety, Separation, Grief