Could a healthy ego identity serve as a protective factor against suicidal tendencies? A pilot study

  • Sarojini Ramgoon School of Psychology, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Private Bag X54001, Durban, South Africa
  • Shaneel Bachoo School of Psychology, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Private Bag X54001, Durban, South Africa
  • Cynthia Patel School of Psychology, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Private Bag X54001, Durban, South Africa
  • Zubeda Paruk School of Psychology, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Private Bag X54001, Durban, South Africa

Abstract

Object Five: The study investigated the interrelationship between adolescent ego identity, suicidal tendencies, gender and race in a sample of South African Indian and Black secondary school students.
Method: The Ego Identity Scale (EIS) and the Multi-attitude Suicide Tendency Scale (MAST) were administered to 63 learners between the ages of 15 and 20 years.
Results: Pearson correlations and t-tests were used to analyse the data. The results indicate that higher scores on the EIS correlate with lower suicidal tendencies for this sample. In addition, higher scores were recorded by females on the Attraction to Death subscale and by Black males on the Attraction to Death, Repulsion by Life and Repulsion by Death subscales of the MAST.
Conclusion: The authors conclude that ego identity achievement is likely to serve as a protective factor against suicidal tendencies.

Journal of Child and Adolescent Mental Health 2006, 18(2): 49–54
Published
2006-11-14
Section
Articles

eISSN: 1728-0591