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Prevalence and Correlates of Suicidal Behavior among Adult Female Victims of Intimate Partner Violence

Authors

  • Courtenay E. Cavanaugh PhD,

    1. Courtenay E. Cavanaugh, Department of Psychology, Rutgers University; Jill Theresa Messing, Melissa Del-Colle, Arizona State University, School of Social Work; Chris O’Sullivan, VCS, Inc.; Jacquelyn C. Campbell, Johns Hopkins University, School of Nursing.
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  • Jill Theresa Messing MSW, PhD,

    1. Courtenay E. Cavanaugh, Department of Psychology, Rutgers University; Jill Theresa Messing, Melissa Del-Colle, Arizona State University, School of Social Work; Chris O’Sullivan, VCS, Inc.; Jacquelyn C. Campbell, Johns Hopkins University, School of Nursing.
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  • Melissa Del-Colle MSW, PhD,

    1. Courtenay E. Cavanaugh, Department of Psychology, Rutgers University; Jill Theresa Messing, Melissa Del-Colle, Arizona State University, School of Social Work; Chris O’Sullivan, VCS, Inc.; Jacquelyn C. Campbell, Johns Hopkins University, School of Nursing.
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  • Chris O’Sullivan PhD,

    1. Courtenay E. Cavanaugh, Department of Psychology, Rutgers University; Jill Theresa Messing, Melissa Del-Colle, Arizona State University, School of Social Work; Chris O’Sullivan, VCS, Inc.; Jacquelyn C. Campbell, Johns Hopkins University, School of Nursing.
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  • Jacquelyn C. Campbell PhD, RN, FAAN

    1. Courtenay E. Cavanaugh, Department of Psychology, Rutgers University; Jill Theresa Messing, Melissa Del-Colle, Arizona State University, School of Social Work; Chris O’Sullivan, VCS, Inc.; Jacquelyn C. Campbell, Johns Hopkins University, School of Nursing.
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  • This study was supported by grant 2000WTVX0011 from the National Institute of Justice and grant T32DA007292 from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. This study was presented at the 2010 International Family Violence Research Conference in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Address correspondence to Courtenay E. Cavanaugh, Rutgers University, Department of Psychology, 311 North Fifth Street, Camden, NJ 08102; E-mail: cocavana@camden.rutgers.edu

Abstract

The prevalence and correlates of suicidal threats and attempts among 662 racially and ethnically diverse adult female victims of intimate partner violence (IPV) were studied. One in five women had threatened or attempted suicide during her lifetime. They observed that multiple logistic regression results indicated that women at greater risk of severe or potentially lethal assaults as measured by the Danger Assessment and those who reported having a chronic or disabling illness were more likely to have threatened or attempted suicide. A linear association was found between age and suicide threats/attempts, with younger women having increased odds. Finally, African American IPV victims were less likely to have threatened or attempted suicide as compared to Latina victims. Study implications are discussed.

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