University Study Examines Suicide Ideation Among Lower Income African American Women

A study by researchers at the University of Kentucky examines suicide risk among low-income African American women. The study, which appears in the December issue of Social Psychology Quarterly, investigates the relationship between racial and gender discrimination and suicide ideation.

The results replicated previous studies which showed that African American women who experienced racial and sexual discrimination were more likely to think about suicide. But the study of 204 low-income African American women found that moderate levels of a sense of purpose in life, self-esteem, and active coping skills buffer these women from thoughts of suicide when confronted with gender or racial discrimination. But the results showed that either high or low levels of these traits did not offer the same protection from suicide ideation.

The authors of  the study are assistant professor of sociology Brea L. Perry, associate professor of sociology Carrie B. Oser, and Ph.D. student Erin L. Pullen. The study, “Too Much of a Good Thing? Psychosocial Resources, Gendered Racism, and Suicidal Ideation Among Low Socioeconomic Status African American Women,” can be accessed here.

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