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Shame Behind the Masks: The Parents' Perspective on Their Sons' Suicide
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2013 (English)In: Archives of Suicide Research, ISSN 1381-1118, E-ISSN 1573-8159, Vol. 17, no 3, 242-261 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Suicides are more frequent among boys than girls. A tentative, conceptual model of processes behind suicide among boys and young men (aged 12-25), grounded in their parents' views, is presented. Extensive interviews with parents in 33 cases of suicide were analyzed using grounded-theory methodology. Family alliances, coalitions, and secrets interacted with the boy concealing problems and hiding behind a mask, while the professionals did not understand the emergency. Four interwoven paths to suicide were found: the boy was hunted and haunted, addicted, depressed, or psychotic. Different forms of shame were hidden behind the masks of the clown, the warrior, and the prince. Future preventive programs need to address barriers to communication among all parties involved.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 17, no 3, 242-261 p.
Keyword [en]
barriers to help, boys and young men, grounded theory, suicide, suicide prevention
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-93188DOI: 10.1080/13811118.2013.805644ISI: 000322307200006OAI: diva2:645832


Available from: 2013-09-05 Created: 2013-09-04 Last updated: 2013-09-05Bibliographically approved

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Werbart, Andrzej
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