Advertisement

Locus of control and the meaning of life as a salutogenic model that reduces suicidal tendencies in patients with mental illness

  • Yael Aviad-WilchekEmail author
Article
  • 25 Downloads

Abstract

Suicide and suicidal tendencies are extremely common in individuals with mental illness. The objective of this study was to construct a salutogenic model for the prevention of suicidality in mentally ill patients, based on two variables: locus of control and meaning of life. The study examined the relationship between internal locus of control and suicidal tendency, and whether the meaning of life variable mediates this relationship. Participants were 59 men and women coping with mental illness, and 65 normative men and women, who formed a comparison group. Study results show that there is indeed a negative correlation between locus of control and suicidal tendency, with the meaning of life variable mediating between them, both in the normative population and in the group of patients with mental illness, suggesting that these variables can serve as a basis for a salutogenic model for the prevention of suicidality. The study recommends using the salutogenic model to help reduce the suicidal tendency of patients with mental illness.

Keywords

Suicidal tendency Locus of control Meaning of life Salutogenic model Mental illness 

Notes

Acknowledgments

I wish to thank Hila Maymon, Liron Vaknin, and Carmel Tobal for their help in administering the questionnaires.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

References

  1. Agerbo, E., Nordentoft, M., & Mortensen, P. B. (2002). Familial, psychiatric, and socioeconomic risk factors for suicide in young people: Nested case-control study. Bmj, 325(7355), 74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Alene, A. G., & Kassie, M. (2017). The relationships among burnout, engagement, locus of control, coping strategies and academic achievement: The case of Gondar University students, Ethiopia. International Journal of Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, 7(1), 11–18.Google Scholar
  3. Aviad-Wilchek, Y. (2014). Meaning in life and suicidal tendency among immigrant (Ethiopian) youth and native-born Israeli youth. Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health, 17(4), 1041–1048.Google Scholar
  4. Aviad-Wilchek, Y., & Cohenca, D. (2011). Learning about meaningful life as a way of coping with situations of stress and anxiety – The instance of second generation Holocaust survivors. In N. Davidovitch, D. Soen (Eds.). The Holocaust ethos in the 21 st century: Dilemmas and challenges (pp. 51–70). Poland: Austeria.Google Scholar
  5. Aviad-Wilchek, Y., & Malka, M. (2016). Religiosity, meaning in life and suicidal tendency among Jews. Journal of Religion and Health, 55(2), 480–494.Google Scholar
  6. Aviad-Wilchek, Y., & Ne’eman-Haviv, V. (2018). Connection between the sense of meaning in life and suicidal tendencies among teenage girls in distress compared with 'normative' teenage girls. International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology., 62(6), 1474–1487.Google Scholar
  7. Aviad-Wilchek, Y., Ne’eman-Haviv, V., & Malka, M. (2017). Meaningful life, leisure activities and suicidal tendencies. Deviant Behavior, 38(6), 621–632.Google Scholar
  8. Bedel, E. F. (2015). Assessing locus of control by gender and learning styles in pre-service early childhood education students. International Journal of Education and Research, 3(1), 53–62.Google Scholar
  9. Bertolote, J. M., & Fleischmann, A. (2002). Suicide and psychiatric diagnosis: A worldwide perspective. World Psychiatry, 1(3), 181–185.PubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  10. Brassai, L., Piko, B. F., & Steger, M. F. (2012). Existential attitudes and eastern European adolescents’ problem and health behaviors: Highlighting the role of the search for meaning in life. The Psychological Record, 62, 719–734.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Chang, E. C., Lucas, A. G., Chang, O. D., Duan, T., Zhou, Z., Yang, J. Z., . Morris, E. Angoff, H. D., & Hirsch, J. K. (2018). Presence of trauma and suicide risk: Personal control as a moderator. Death Studies,  https://doi.org/10.1080/07481187.2017.1411991, 42, 529, 533CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Corcoran, K. J., & Fischer, J. (1994). Measures for clinical practice: couples, families and children. N.Y.: The Free Press.Google Scholar
  13. Crumbaugh, J. C., & Maholick, L. T. (1981). PIL [Purpose in Life Test]. Abilene: Viktor Frankl Institute of Logotherapy.Google Scholar
  14. Dachkovsky, J. (2013). Battered women shelters: The contribution of environmental and personality resources to the decline mental distress. Master degree, social work, Bar Ilan University [Hebrew].Google Scholar
  15. Dag, I. (2002). Kontrol Odagi Olcegi (KOÖ): Olcek gelistirme, guvenirlik ve gecerlik calismasi. Turk Psikoloji Dergisi, 17, 77–90.Google Scholar
  16. Datu, J. A. D. (2016). The synergistic interplay between positive emotions and maximization enhances meaning in life: A study in a collectivist context. Current Psychology, 35(3), 459–466.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Fahlman, S. A., Mercer, K. B., Gaskovski, P., Eastwood, A. E., & Eastwood, J. D. (2009). Does a lack of life meaning cause boredom? Result from psychometric, longitudinal and experimental analyses. Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, 28(3), 307–340.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Frankl, V. E. (1984). Man’s search for meaning. New York: Washington Square Pr.Google Scholar
  19. Frankl, V. E. (2000). Man’s search for ultimate meaning. New York: MJF Books.Google Scholar
  20. Galili, R. & Sagi, S. (2010). Emotional reactions among adolescents: a Salutogenic approach. Mifgash, 31, 139–159 (Hebrew).Google Scholar
  21. Gewirtz, A. H., DeGarmo, D. S., & Zamir, O. (2016). Effects of a military parenting program on parental distress and suicidal ideation: After deployment adaptive parenting tools. Suicide and Life-threatening Behavior, 46(S1), S23–S31.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Heisel, M. J., & Flett, G. L. (2004). Purpose in life, satisfaction with life, and suicide ideation in a clinical sample. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 26(2), 127–135.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Henry, K. L., Lovegrove, P. J., Steger, M. F., Chen, P. Y., Cigularov, K. P., & Tomazic, R. G. (2014). The potential role of meaning in life in the relationship between bullying victimization and suicidal ideation. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 43(2), 221–232.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Hobfoll, S. E., Johnson, R. J., Ennis, N., & Jackson, A. P. (2003). Resource loss, resource gain, and emotional outcomes among inner city women. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 84(3), 632–643.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Judge, T. A., Erez, A., Bono, J. E., & Thoresen, C. J. (2002). Are measures of self-esteem, neuroticism, locus of control, and generalized self-efficacy indicators of a common core construct? Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 83(3), 693–710.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kekes, J. (1986). The informed will and the meaning of life. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, 47(1), 75–90.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Kiang, L., & Fuligni, A. J. (2010). Meaning in life as a mediator of ethnic identity and adjustment among adolescents from Latin, Asian, and European American backgrounds. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 39, 1253–1264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Klonsky, E. D., May, A. M., & Saffer, B. Y. (2016). Suicide, suicide attempts, and suicidal ideation. Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, 12, 307–330.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Lechet, R. & Lipziger, A. (2004). Meaning: Prevention program on the issue of drugs. Jerusalem: Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport (Hebrew).Google Scholar
  30. Lefcourt, H. M. (Ed.). (2014). Locus of control: Current trends in theory & research. N.Y: Psychology Press.Google Scholar
  31. Lucas, E. (1986). Meaning in suffering: Comfort in crisis through Logotherapy. Berkeley, CA: Institute of Logotherapy Press.Google Scholar
  32. Marco, J. H., Pérez, S., García-Alandete, J., & Moliner, R. (2017). Meaning in life in people with borderline personality disorder. Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy, 24(1), 162–170.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Meehan, J., Kapur, N., Hunt, I. M., Turnbull, P., Robinson, J., Bickley, H., et al. (2006). Suicide in mental health in-patients and within 3 months of discharge: National clinical survey. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 188(2), 129–134.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Office of the Surgeon General (US, & National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention) (2012). 2012 National strategy for suicide prevention: goals and objectives for action: report of the US Surgeon General and of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention.Google Scholar
  35. Rotter, J. B. (1966). Generalized expectancies for internal versus external control reinforcement. Psychological Monographs, 80, 1–28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Ryon, H. S., & Gleason, M. E. (2014). The role of locus of control in daily life. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 40(1), 121–131.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Sagy, S. (2015). Coping, conflict and culture: The salutogenic approach in the study of resiliency. Resiliency: Enhancing coping with crisis and terrorism, 41–48.Google Scholar
  38. Schulenberg, S. E., Strack, K. M., & Buchanan, E. M. (2011). The meaning in life questionnaire: Psychometric properties with individuals with serious mental illness in a inpatient setting. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 67, 1210–1219.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Shek, D. T. (2018). The influence of meaning in life on adolescents’ hedonic well-being and risk behaviour: Implications for social work. The British Journal of Social Work.  https://doi.org/10.1093/bjsw/bcy029.
  40. Steger, M. F., & Kashdan, T. B. (2013). The unbearable lightness of meaning: Well-being and unstable meaning in life. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 8(2), 103–115.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Steger, M. F., Frazier, P., Oishi, S., & Kaler, M. (2006). The meaning in life questionnaire: Assessing the presence of and search for meaning in life. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 53(1), 80–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Thege, B. K., Bachner, Y. G., Kushnir, T., & Kopp, M. S. (2009). Relationship between meaning in life and smoking status: Results of a national representative survey. Addictive Behaviors, 34(1), 117–120.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Tomer, A., Eliason, G. T., & Wong, P. T. P. (Eds.). (2008). Existentialism and spiritual issues in death attitudes Mahan. NJ: Erllbaum.Google Scholar
  44. Turecki, G., & Brent, D. A. (2016). Suicide and suicidal behaviour. The Lancet, 387, 1227–1239.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Walter, K. H., Gunstad, J., & Hobfoll, S. E. (2010). Self-control predicts later symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder. Psychological Trauma: Theory, Research, Practice, and Policy, 2(2), 97–101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. World Health Organization (WHO). (2017). Depression and other common mental disorders: Globalization and Health estimates.Google Scholar
  47. Zheng, W. K. (1974). Index of potential suicide (IPS). A rating scale for suicide prevention. In A. T. Beck, H. L. Resnik, & D. J. Lettieri (Eds.), The prediction of suicide (pp. 221–249). Maryland: Charles Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of CriminologyAriel UniversityArielIsrael

Personalised recommendations