Restrictive Emotionality, Depressive Symptoms, and Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors Among High School Students
- 740 Downloads
Depression and suicidal thoughts and behaviors are prevalent among youth today. The current study sought to further our understanding of the correlates of depression and suicidality by assessing the relationship between restrictive emotionality (difficulty understanding and expressing emotions) and depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation and attempts among adolescents. A large group of high school students (n = 2189, 58.3% male; 13–18 years of age) completed a self-report survey as part of a 2-stage suicide screening project. Logistic regression analyses were used to assess the association between restrictive emotionality and depressive symptoms, suicidal ideation, and suicide attempts. Those reporting high restrictive emotionality were 11 times more likely to have elevated depressive symptom scores, 3 times more likely to report serious suicidal ideation (after controlling for depressive symptoms), and more than twice as likely to report a suicide attempt (after controlling for depressive symptoms) than those reporting low restrictive emotionality. Restrictive emotionality partially mediated the relationship between depressive symptoms and suicidal ideation and behavior. The pattern of association between restrictive emotionality and the outcome variables was similar for boys and girls. Restrictive emotionality is highly associated with elevated depressive symptoms and suicidal thoughts and behaviors among high school students, and may be a useful specific target in prevention and treatment efforts.
KeywordsSuicide Adolescents Depression Restrictive emotionality
The authors report no conflict of interest related to the work. The project was supported by NIMH grant, R01-MH64632 and NIMH grant, T32 MH16434-26.
- Beck, A. T., & Steer, R. A. (1993). Manual for the Beck depression inventory. San Antonio: The Psychological Corporation.Google Scholar
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2008). Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance—United States, 2007. Surveillance Summaries, June 6. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 57 (No.SS-4).Google Scholar
- Eaton, D. K., Kann, L., Kinchen, S., Shanklin, S., Ross, J., Hawkins, J., et al. (2008). Youth risk behavior surveillance- United States, 2005. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports, 57, 1–131.Google Scholar
- Jacobson, C. M., & Gould, M. (2008). Suicide and non-suicidal self-injurious behaviors among youth: Risk and protective factors. In S. Nolen-Hoeksema & E. M. Hill (Eds.), Handbook of depression in adolescents (pp. 207–236). New York: Taylor & Francis, Inc.Google Scholar
- Mufson, L., Dorta, K. P., Moreau, D., & Weissman, M. M. (2004). Interpersonal psychotherapy for depressed adolescents (2nd ed.). New York: The Guildford Press.Google Scholar
- O’Neil, J. M., Good, G. E., & Holmes, S. (1995). Fifteen years of theory and research on men’s gender role conflict: New paradigms for empirical research. In R. Levant & W. Pollack (Eds.), The new psychology of men (pp. 164–206). New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
- Reynolds, W. M. (1988). SIQ professional manual. Odessa, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources, Inc.Google Scholar
- Reynolds, W. M., & Mazza, J. J. (1999). Assessment of suicidal ideation in inner-city children and young adolescents: Reliability and validity of the Suicidal Ideation Questionnaire-Jr. The School Psychology Review, 28, 17–30.Google Scholar
- Shaffer, D., Fisher, P., Lucas, C. P., Dulcan, M. K., & Schwab-Stone, M. (2000). NIMH Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children Version IV (NIMH DISC-IV): Description, differences from previous versions, and reliability of some common diagnoses. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 39, 28–38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Sobel, M. E. (1982). Asymptomatic intervals for indirect effects in structural equation models. In S. Leinhart (Ed.), Sociological methodology (pp. 290–312). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.Google Scholar