Year: 1999 Source: Aging & Mental Health, v.3, no.2, (May 1999), p.112-118 SIEC No: 20010770

Using a sample of every reported suicide of older individuals between 1986-1990, it was found that a different pattern of variables was predictive of suicide rates for American men & women. For elderly men, factors associated with financial & social status were the best predictors of suicide. For elderly women, the predictors were indexes of social & environmental stability & stress. These findings may be explained by psychological theories which speak of sex differences in the personality domains known as agency & communion, & similar considerations may help to explain why the suicide rate for men tends to increase in old age, while that for women reamins relatively constant. (36 refs.)