Year: 2015 Source: Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior.(2015).45(4):518Ð528.DOI: 10.1111/sltb.12146 SIEC No: 20150356

Suicide and suicidal behavior are major public health problems, especially among adolescents and young adults. Previous research has established links between parental bonding and suicidality; however, it remains unclear whether parental bonding is associated with suicide ideation, the progression from suicide ideation to suicide attempts, or both. This study examined the relation of parental bonding to suicide ideation and suicide attempts in adolescents from two settings: (1) acute psychiatric care (n = 172) and (2) high school (n = 426). All participants were administered validated measures of parental bonding, suicide ideation, and suicide attempts, as well as emotion dysregulation, loneliness, and self-worth. In the psychiatric sample, lower parental care significantly differentiated adolescents with a history of suicide attempts from those with suicide ideation only or without histories of suicidality. This pattern remained even after controlling for other known correlates of suicidality (i.e., emotional dysregulation, loneliness, and low self-worth). Similar effects were found in the community sample, although these findings failed to reach statistical significance. In both samples, parental overprotection was not associated with suicide ideation or suicide attempts. Results suggest that parental care may be an important risk factor for youth suicidal behavior and may help differentiate suicide attempters from suicide ideators.

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