Cognitive Therapy and Research

, Volume 18, Issue 5, pp 439–460

Dimensions of perfectionism and suicide ideation

  • Paul L. Hewitt
  • Gordon L. Flett
  • Cathy Weber

DOI: 10.1007/BF02357753

Cite this article as:
Hewitt, P.L., Flett, G.L. & Weber, C. Cogn Ther Res (1994) 18: 439. doi:10.1007/BF02357753


Two studies were conducted to examine the relation between dimensions of perfectionsim and suicide ideation: whether perfectionism is important in suicide ideation when considered in the context of other predictors of suicide (i.e., depression, hopelessness), and whether perfectionism moderates the association between life stress and suicide ideation. Samples of 91 psychiatric patients (Study 1) and 160 college students (Study 2) completed the Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale, the Hopelessness Scale, the Beck Depression Inventory, and the Scale For Suicide Ideation. The subjects in Study 2 also completed a measure of negative life stress. Overall, the results confirmed that self-oriented and socially prescribed perfectionism are associated with greater suicide ideation. Moreover, these two perfectionism dimensions contributed uniquely to the discrimination of suicide groups and both moderated the link between life stress and suicide ideation. The findings are discussed in terms of their practical and theoretical implications.

Key Words

perfectionism suicide ideation suicide risk 

Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1994

Authors and Affiliations

  • Paul L. Hewitt
    • 1
  • Gordon L. Flett
    • 2
  • Cathy Weber
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouver
  2. 2.York UniversityUK
  3. 3.University of WinnipegCanada

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