Domestic Violence Elevates Suicide Risks

Jul 2014

Texas suicide lawyerThere are many risk factors for suicide and both individuals and mental health professionals need to be aware of some of the likely reasons why people will consider death by suicide. One factor that can play a role in increasing the risk of suicide is domestic violence.

Mental health professionals should know that a person who has experienced domestic violence or intimate partner violence is at greater risk of death by suicide. If a counselor or care professional fails to recognize risk factors of suicide, a suicide attorney should be consulted for assistance in pursuing a claim for compensation.

The Link Between Domestic Violence and Suicide

As Overcoming the Darkness reports, victims of domestic violence have a higher risk of suicide not only while the violence is occurring but over the course of the rest of their lives. For example, a woman who experiences violence at the hands of an intimate partner is 12 times as likely to die by suicide as compared with someone who is not a victim of domestic violence. The increased risk of suicide is so strong that more domestic violence victims actually die by suicide than are killed by the person who is committing the abuse.

People who are themselves victimized by domestic violence are not the only ones who face an increased risk of suicide. Children who are exposed to domestic violence in the home are more likely to have suicidal tendencies and to die from suicide.

UMN reports on additional research showing a link between suicide and domestic violence. One study showed that 29 percent of all women in the United States who attempted suicide had been battered by an intimate partner. Reports prompted UNICEF to state that “a close correlation between domestic violence and suicide has been established based on studies in the United States” as well as in at least seven other countries.

Victims of domestic violence may feel trapped in a situation they cannot get out of and may feel as if they have no choice but to escape by taking their own life. Unfortunately, both suicide and domestic violence are also stigmatized in society. People avoid talking about domestic violence and they avoid talking about the fact that they are having thoughts of suicide because they are ashamed or because they fear social stigma.

Open communication is the key to preventing deaths by suicide among domestic violence victims. A change in public perception could help to make it easier for people who are being victimized and considering suicide to get the help that they need. Healthcare professionals need to be better trained and better informed on the link between domestic violence and suicide, and screening should be encouraged so that intervention is more likely to occur.

A large-scale study conducted by the United States Air Force shows that integrating suicide prevention policies and de-stigmatizing the process of seeking help can make a major difference in reducing the suicide rate. Not only that, but homicide and family-violence rates also decreased along with the number of people who died by suicide.

A suicide attorney at the Law Offices of Skip Simpson can help. Call (214) 618-8222 or visit to schedule a free case consultation.

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