Remember Me
Or use your Academic/Social account:


Or use your Academic/Social account:


You have just completed your registration at OpenAire.

Before you can login to the site, you will need to activate your account. An e-mail will be sent to you with the proper instructions.


Please note that this site is currently undergoing Beta testing.
Any new content you create is not guaranteed to be present to the final version of the site upon release.

Thank you for your patience,
OpenAire Dev Team.

Close This Message


Verify Password:
Verify E-mail:
*All Fields Are Required.
Please Verify You Are Human:
fbtwitterlinkedinvimeoflicker grey 14rssslideshare1
Benson, O; Gibson, S; Boden, Z; Owen, G (2016)
Publisher: London South Bank University
Languages: English
Types: Article
Methods and Rationale. Suicides are related to diverse demographic, socio-economical, medical and behavioural ‘risk factors’. Theoretical work in suicidology attempts to construct models that explicate the mechanisms underlying these suicides; however, models taking first person perspectives as their primary evidential bases are scarce. Drawing on interviews carried out by researchers at a UK mental health charity during 2010-2012 with people bereaved by suicide (n=25), suicidal individuals (n=14) and their ‘significant others’ (n=15), we present an explanatory model of the process of suicide derived from a Grounded Theory study. Results. Suicide/attempt can be understood as the result of a complex interaction of three elements of experience: ‘lack of trust’, ‘lack of inherent worth’ and ‘suicidal exhaustion’. The first two may be seen as conditions from which the third emerges, but so that all the elements are related to each other reciprocally and the exhaustion and the suicidal thoughts, feelings and behaviours it gives rise to feed back into the initial conditions. Trust, understood as an aspect of experience that allows a person to accommodate uncertainty in relationships and in thinking about the future, is lacking in suicidal people, as is a self-determined sense of worth that is independent of external factors. Substituting inherent worth with self-worth gained from extrinsic factors, and trustful experiencing with strategies of self-reliance and withdrawal, a person begins to consume mental resources at a high rate. ‘Suicidal exhaustion’ is distinguished from other types of chronic mental exhaustion in that it is experienced as non-contingent (arises from living itself) and hopeless in that the exhausted person is unable to envisage a future in which demands on his/her mental resources are fewer, and their replenishment available. Conclusion. The model has potential applications for public participation in suicide prevention, which should be mapped and assessed in further research.
  • The results below are discovered through our pilot algorithms. Let us know how we are doing!

    • Appleby, L., Cooper, J., Amos, T., & Faragher, B. (1999). Psychological autopsy study of suicides by people aged under 35. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 175(2), 168-174.
    • Baumeister, R. F., Bratslavsky, E., Muraven, M. & Tice, D. M. (1998) 'Ego-depletion: Is the active self a limited resource?' Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 74(5): 1252-1265.
    • Baumeister, R. F., & Leary, M. R. (1995). The need to belong: Desire for interpersonal attachments as a fundamental human motivation. Psychological Bulletin, 117, 497-529.
    • Baumeister, R. F. (1990). Suicide as escape from self. Psychological Review, 97, 90-113.
    • Bayne, T. & Levy, N. (2006) The feeling of doing: Deconstructing the phenomenology of agency. In Sebanz, N. & Prinz, W. (Eds.) Disorders of Volition (pp. 49-68) Cambridge (MA): MIT Press.
    • Bazalgette, L., Bradley, W. & Ousbey, J. (2011) The Truth About Suicide. A publication by Demos.
    • Available at http://www.demos.co.uk/publications/thetruthaboutsuicide. (Last checked 08 March 2015).
    • Beck, A. T., Brown, G., Berchick, R. J., Stewart, B. L., & Steer, R. A. (1990). Relationship between hopelessness and ultimate suicide: A replication with psychiatric outpatients. American Journal of Psychiatry, 147, 190-195.
    • Benson, O., Gibson, S., & Brand, S. (2013) The Experience of Agency in the Feeling of Being Suicidal, Journal of Consciousness Studies, 20(7-8): 56-79.
    • Bhui, K. S., Dinos, S. & McKenzie, K. (2012) Ethnicity and its influence on suicide rates and risk', Ethnicity & Health, 17(1-2): 141-8.
    • Bonnewyn, A., Shah, A., Bruffaerts, R., Schoevaerts, K., Rober, P., Van Parys, H. & Demyttenaere, K. (2014) Reflections of older adults on the process preceding their suicide attempt: a qualitative approach, Death Studies 38, 612-618 Fincham, B., Langer, S., Scourfield, J. & Shiner, M. (2011) Understanding Suicide: A Sociological Autopsy. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
    • Govier, T. (1993) Self-Trust, Autonomy, and Self-Esteem. Hypatia, 8(1), 99-120.
    • Green-Demers, I., Pelletier, L. G. & Menard, S. (1997) The impact of behavioral difficulty on the saliency of the association between self-determined motivation and environmental behaviors.
    • Canadian Journal of Behavioural Science, 29, 157-166.
    • Heidegger, M. (1962/1927) Being and Time. Trans. Macquarrie, J. & Robinson, E. New York: Harper & Row.
    • Hjelmeland, H. & Knizek, B. L. (2010) Why we need qualitative research in suicidology. Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior, 40(1), 74-80.
    • Houston K, Hawton K & Sheppard R (2001) Suicide in young people aged 15-24: A psychological autopsy study. Journal of Affective Disorders 63(1-3), 159-170.
    • Job, V., Dweck, C. S. & Walton, G. M. (2010) Ego-depletion - is it all in your head? Implicit theories about willpower affect self-regulation. Psychological Science, 21(11), 1686-1693.
    • Joiner, T. (2005). Why people die by suicide. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
    • Jordan, J., McKenna, H., Keeney, S., Cutcliffe, J., Stevenson, C., Slater, P., & McGowan, I. (2012) Providing meaningful care: Learning from the experiences of suicidal young men, Qualitative Health Research, 22, 1207-1219 Kawachi, I, Kennedy, BP, Lochner, K & Prothrow-Smith, D (1997). Social capital, income inequality and mortality. American Journal of Public Health, 87(9), 1491-1498.
    • Lahno, B. (2001) On the emotional character of trust. Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, 4(2), 171- 189.
    • Lewis, G. & Sloggett, A. (1998) 'Suicide, deprivation, and unemployment: record linkage study'.
    • British Journal of Medicine, 317, 1283.
    • Løgstrup, K.E. (1997) Beyond the Ethical Demand. Notre Dame, IN: Notre Dame University Press.
    • (Original work published 1956.) McDermott, E., Roen, K. & Scourfield, J. (2008) Avoiding shame: young LGBT people, homophobia and self-destructive behaviours. Culture, Health and Sexuality, 10(8), 815-829.
    • Mumford, D. B. (1994) 'Can 'functional' somatic symptoms associated with anxiety and with depression be differentiated?'. International Journal of Methods in Psychiatric Research, 4, 133-141.
    • Murray, H. (1938). Explorations in personality. New York: Oxford University Press.
    • Nolen-Hoeksema, S. (2000) The role of rumination in depressive disorders and mixed anxiety/depressive symptoms. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 109(3), 504.
    • Pilgrim, D., Rogers, A., & Bentall, R. (2009). The centrality of personal relationships in the creation and amelioration of mental health problems: the current interdisciplinary case. Health, 13(2), 235- 254.
    • Rivlin, A., Fazel, S., Marzano, L. & Hawton, K. (2013) The suicidal process in male prisoners making near-lethal suicide attempts. Psychology, Crime & Law, 19, 305-327 Sareen, J. (2011) Anxiety Disorders and Risk for Suicide: Why Such Controversy? Depression & Anxiety, 28, 941-945.
    • Schneidman, E. S. (1993). Suicide as psychache. Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, 181, 147- 14.
    • Williams, J. M. G. (2001) Suicide and attempted suicide: Understanding the Cry of Pain. London: Penguin.
  • No related research data.
  • No similar publications.

Share - Bookmark

Cite this article