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Acta Psychiatr Scand. 1994 Apr;89(4):246-54.

Parental bonding and vulnerability to adolescent suicide.

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Department of Psychiatry, Flinders University Medical School, South Australia.


Part of a series of studies into early detection in adolescent suicide, this study investigated relationships between parenting style and suicidal thoughts, acts and depression. Students (mean age 15 years) from 4 randomly chosen high schools completed self-report questionnaires containing the Parental Bonding Instrument (PBI) and the Youth Self Report, which provided information about suicide ideation, deliberate self-harm and depression. Significant differences for mean scores on the PBI subscales were noted between cases and noncases of depression, suicidal thoughts and deliberate self-harm. Assignment by adolescents of their parents to the "affectionless control" quadrant of the PBI doubles the relative risk for suicidal thoughts, increases the relative risk for deliberate self-harm 3-fold and increases the relative risk for depression 5-fold. It seems that the PBI may play a role in identification of vulnerable adolescents; further, it both elucidates aspects of adolescent-parent interaction and points toward areas for intervention with at-risk adolescents. We recommend the use of the PBI in early detection studies of adolescent suicide.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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