Risk factors for suicidal behavior: Psychosocial risk models with Turkish adolescents

Sevim Terzi-Unsal1, Emine Gul Kapci2
1Dicle University, Turkey
2Ankara University, Turkey
Cite this article:  Terzi-Unsal, S., & Kapci, E. (2005). Risk factors for suicidal behavior: Psychosocial risk models with Turkish adolescents. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 33, 593-608.

Volume 33 Issue 6 | e1421 | Published: September 2005 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2005.33.6.593

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In this study we tested 3 different suicide models for adolescents residing in a Turkish City, Batman. A total of 605 adolescents from 5 different high schools participated in this study and completed a psychosocial variables form (developed for this study), the Offer Self-Image Questionnaire (Offer, Ostrov, Howard, & Dolan, 1989, adapted by Sahin 1993), the Adolescence Life Events Questionnaire (Kapci & Terzi-Unsal, 2001), the Piers-Harris Self-Worth Scale for Children (Harris & Piers, 1969, adapted by Catakli & Oner, 1996), the Suicide Behaviors Questionnaire (Linehan & Nielsen, 1981, adapted by Bayam, Dilbaz, Bitlis, Holat, & Tuzer, 1995), the Beck Hopelessness Scale (Beck, Weissman, Lester, & Trexler, 1974, adapted by Durak, 1994), the Suicide Ideation Questionnaire (Dilbaz, Holat, Bayam, Tuzer, & Bitlis, 1995), the Brief Symptom Inventory (Derogatis, 1992, adapted by Sabin & Durak, 1994) and the Multidimensional Scale for Perceived Social Support (Zimmet, Dahlen, Zimmet, & Farley, 1998, adapted by Eker & Arkar, 1995). Data were analyzed using structural equation modeling and the findings suggest that adolescent life events, psychosocial variables, social support, and self-image are secondary risk factors for adolescent suicides, predicting self-worth, psychological health, and hopelessness. These variables, in turn, predicted suicide ideation – identified as a primary risk factor – that predicted suicide behaviors. The results are discussed in the context of primary-secondary risk factors for adolescent suicides.


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