Victims of Violence and Adverse Childhood Experiences
Research shows that victims of domestic and sexual violence are at increase risk of suicide. Childhood exposure to violence is also linked with a higher prevalence of suicide. While the exact relationship between violence and suicide is not certain, services such as counseling, advocacy services, and support groups have shown possitive outcomes for victims.
Dial 211 to be connected with a list of local Violence Advocacy and Trauma Therapy Centers near you.
Due to isolation of the victim of domestic violence it may be more difficult to spot warning signs of suicide. Due to loyalty to the abuser the victim may not disclose thoughts of suicide or abuse but below are some behaviors that are warning signs:
- Social isolation
- Giving prized possessions away
- Getting documents in order such as a will and other legal documents
- Increased use of drugs or alcohol
It is common for victims of domestic assualt to be isolated, and suffer from depression and anxiety which are risk factors for suicide. Due to the control that the abuser has over the victim they often don't seek help from a mental health professional to treat the mental illness. Sometimes when a victim feels trapped in an abusive relationship they see suicide as the only way to get out of the relationship. Up to 90 percent of people that die by suicide had a diagnosable mental disorder at the time of their death.
It is important to watch children exposed to domestic violence for warning signs of suicide as well as they will be at increased risk even when the acts of violence were not directly aimed at them.
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES)
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) such as childhood abuse, neglect, loss, or other negative events may also increase the risk of suicide attempts. Unfortunately, Adverse Childhood Experiences are not uncommon, but there is help and hope. Youth and adults that experienced traumatic childhood events can also recieve effective services by dialing 211 and asking for a list of local counseling and supportive resources.