Talking About Suicide: Trends in Christian and Socially Conservative Suicide Decedents

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Objective: This study examined the relationship between religious affiliation, social policy beliefs, and whether individuals spoke with anyone about suicide prior to suicide death.

Methods: 267 suicide loss survivors reported on characteristics of suicide decedents.

Results: Binary logistic regressions found those who identified as socially liberal were more likely to have discussed suicide with the loss survivor, or to have told someone else they were thinking about attempting suicide than were those who identified as socially conservative. Follow-up analyses indicated Christian affiliation was only associated with a lower likelihood of having discussed suicide with the loss survivor among older men.

Conclusion: Results indicated that specific worldviews may serve as obstacles to suicidal individuals discussing their suicidal thoughts prior to death. As such, the findings indicate that public health approaches to suicide prevention that do not rely upon open reporting of suicidal ideation may be vital within such communities.

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Archives of Suicide Research

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