Suicide Stigma, Suicide Literacy and Help-Seeking Attitudes and Intentions in Parents

Suicide is the leading cause of death in young people aged 15-25 years. Help-seeking for suicidal ideation is low in this population. The reasons for this are varied but include stigma, poor mental health literacy, a lack of access to appropriate services, and limited understanding of how to access services when they are available.

Limited research has been conducted to explore the association between suicide stigma, suicide literacy and help-seeking attitudes and intentions for suicide. Further still, even less is known about the influence of a parent’s suicide stigma and suicide literacy on their attitudes and intentions to seek help for their child if they were to express thoughts of suicide. Understanding the influence of parental attitudes and knowledge is important, as they are often the ‘gatekeepers’ to care for their child.

The aim of this study therefore is to examine the relationship between parental suicide stigma, suicide literacy and their attitudes and intentions toward seeking help for their child if they were to express thoughts of suicide.