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Internalized stigma, sense of belonging, and suicidal ideation among veterans with serious mental illness.

Wastler H, Lucksted A, Phalen P, Drapalski A. Internalized stigma, sense of belonging, and suicidal ideation among veterans with serious mental illness. Psychiatric Rehabilitation Journal. 2020 Jun 1; 43(2):91-96.

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Abstract:

OBJECTIVE: There is emerging evidence that internalized stigma increases risk for suicide among individuals with serious mental illness. The purpose of the current study was to evaluate whether sense of belonging moderates the relationship between internalized stigma and suicidal ideation. METHOD: Two hundred forty-two veterans with serious mental illness completed measures of internalized stigma, belongingness, and depression. Moderation analysis was used to determine whether sense of belonging interacts with internalized stigma to predict suicidal ideation when accounting for individual differences in depression and relevant demographic variables. RESULTS: Consistent with our hypothesis, sense of belonging significantly moderated the relationship between internalized stigma and suicidal ideation. Specifically, the relationship between internalized stigma and suicidal ideation was strongest when sense of belonging was low. CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: Internalized stigma and belongingness interact to increase risk for suicide. Both constructs should be assessed and included in interventions to reduce suicide risk among veterans with serious mental illness. (PsycInfo Database Record (c) 2020 APA, all rights reserved).





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