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An Inquiry into Relationship Suicides and Reciprocity
journal contributionposted on 2023-05-17, 01:39 authored by Davis, MS, Callanan, VJ, Lester, D, Haines, J
Few theories on suicide have been grounded in the norm of reciprocity. There is literature on suicide, however, describing motivations such as retaliation and retreat which can be interpreted as modes of adaptation to the norm of reciprocity. We propose a reciprocity-based theory to explain suicides associated with relationship problems. Employing a content analysis of suicide notes, we tested the theory, finding evidence of exploitation, exploiter guilt, retaliation, and retreat as motives for committing relationship-based suicide. Reciprocity-based note writers were more likely to have used alcohol or drugs in the hours prior to committing suicide, and they were also more likely to have made their intentions known beforehand. Implications for future research as well as for suicide prevention are discussed. Â© 2009 The American Association of Suicidology.
Publication titleSuicide and Life-Threatening Behavior: The Official Journal of The American Association of Suicidology
Department/SchoolSchool of Psychological Sciences
PublisherGuilford Publications Inc
Place of publication72 Spring Street, New York, USA, Ny, 10012