Title

Firearms Matter: The Moderating Role of Firearm Storage in the Association Between Current Suicidal Ideation and Likelihood of Future Suicide Attempts Among United States Military Personnel

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1-1-2016

School

Psychology

Abstract

The relationship between firearm ownership and suicide is well documented. This study hypothesized that how soldiers store their firearms would moderate the relationship between suicidal ideation and the self-reported likelihood of engaging in a future suicide attempt, and that this relationship would be explained by fearlessness about death. There were 432 military personnel (91.3% men, 74.2% White, Mage = 27.60) who endorsed current ownership of a private firearm and who were recruited from a military base in the southeastern United States (94.5% National Guard). Firearm storage moderated the relationship between suicidal ideation and the self-reported likelihood of engaging in a future suicide attempt, but this relationship was not explained by fearlessness about death. Individuals who reported keeping their firearms loaded and stored in an unsecure location exhibited higher mean levels of fearlessness about death. Findings highlight the need for research examining contributors to suicide risk in the context of firearm storage, and provide support for suicide prevention efforts involving restricting means.

Publication Title

Military Psychology

Volume

28

Issue

1

First Page

25

Last Page

33

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