College-Students Hypothetical Responses to Suicidal Individuals Who Are HIV Positive, Substance Abusing, Depressed, or Anxious
To see if specific circumstances encourage or discourage helpful responses to suicide threats, 141 undergraduates read a one-paragraph vignette about a suicidal person with either AIDS, depression, drug abuse, anxiety, or adjustment problems. Students them wrote five responses, which on average were mildly unhelpful regardless of circumstance. A suicidal person who was HIV positive engendered significantly less helpful responses than a suicidal person who had panic attacks. Results suggest that, for suicidal persons, revealing life circumstances fails to engender increased empathy in college students.
O'Neal, S. E.,
Range, L. M.
(1993). College-Students Hypothetical Responses to Suicidal Individuals Who Are HIV Positive, Substance Abusing, Depressed, or Anxious. Death Studies, 17(2), 143-149.
Available at: http://aquila.usm.edu/fac_pubs/6452