Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/10285
Appears in Collections:Psychology Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Self-regulation of unattainable goals in suicide attempters: A two year prospective study
Authors: O'Connor, Rory
O'Carroll, Ronan
Ryan, Caoimhe
Smyth, Roger
Contact Email: ronan.ocarroll@stir.ac.uk
Keywords: Suicide
Psychological
Goal regulation
Self-harm
Prospective
Theoretical
Issue Date: 15-Dec-2012
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: O'Connor R, O'Carroll R, Ryan C & Smyth R (2012) Self-regulation of unattainable goals in suicide attempters: A two year prospective study, Journal of Affective Disorders, 142 (1-3), pp. 248-255.
Abstract: Background: Although suicide is a global public health concern with approximately one million people dying by suicide annually, our knowledge of the proximal risk mechanisms is limited. In the present study, we investigated the utility of two proximal mechanisms (goal disengagement and goal reengagement) in the prediction of hospital-treated self-harm repetition in a sample of suicide attempters. Methods: Two hundred and thirty-seven patients hospitalised following a suicide attempt completed a range of clinical (depression, anxiety, hopelessness, suicidal ideation) and goal regulation measures (goal reengagement and disengagement) while in hospital. They were followed up two years later to determine whether they had been re-hospitalised with self-harm between baseline and the follow-up. Results: Self-harm hospitalisation in the past 10 years, suicidal ideation and difficulty reengaging in new goals independently predicted self-harm two years later. In addition, among younger people, having difficulty re-engaging in new goals further predicted self-harm re-hospitalisation when disengagement from existing unattainable goals was also low. Conversely, the deleterious impact of low reengagement in older people was elevated when goal disengagement was also high. Limitations: Only hospital-treated self-harm and suicide were recorded at follow-up, episodes of less medically serious self-harm were not recorded. Conclusions: Suicidal behaviour is usefully conceptualised in terms of goal self-regulation following the experience of unattainable goals. Treatment interventions should target the self-regulation of goals among suicide attempters and clinicians should recognise that different regulation processes need to be addressed at different points across the lifespan.
Type: Journal Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/10285
DOI Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2012.04.035
Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Affiliation: Psychology
Psychology
Psychology
Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh

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