Claire Winson-Jones, School of Psychology
The dissertation extends theoretical constructs of the interpersonal psychological theory of suicide (IPTS; Joiner 2005, 2007) by considering the additional role of secondary trauma stress (STS) symptoms. Recent research has shown an association between PTSD symptoms and suicidal ideation and the acquired capability for suicide. STS has a high degree of symptom overlap with PTSD. Therefore, STS symptoms may also contribute to both suicidal ideation and the acquired capability for suicide. In the study, constructs proposed to explain (a) suicidal ideation and (b) an acquired capability for suicide were explored. Among 310 mental health nurses in British Columbia, Canada, perceived burdensomeness was positively associated with suicidal ideation, and STS symptoms of avoidance were positively associated with acquired capability for suicide. Results extend the IPTS theory to a previously unexplored population, mental health nurses, and establish a foundation for investigating the observed relationship between STS symptoms and suicidal behaviour.
Key Words: suicide, interpersonal psychological theory of suicide, thwarted belonging, perceived burdensomeness, acquired capability for suicide, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, PTSD, secondary trauma stress, STS