Abusive relationships, problematic alcohol use, and suicidality are issues of serious concern in college health. A recent study modeled the role of alcohol problems in the association between intimate partner abuse (including physical, sexual, and psychological abuse) and suicide-related behaviors (self-harm, ideation, and attempt) among college students. Researchers used data from the National College Health Assessment II (NCHA-II) (n = 88,568). Their findings suggest alcohol-related problems (which include doing something regrettable, memory loss, and getting in trouble with the police) partially mediate the relationship between intimate partner abuse and suicidality in both men and women.
Take away: College students experiencing intimate partner abuse may be at increased risk of developing suicidality, especially if they are experiencing alcohol-related problems. Clinicians should consider screening students for problematic alcohol use and history of abusive relationships as a means to reduce suicidality.
Citation: Sunami N, Hammersley J & Keefe K (2017). The role of alcohol problems in the association between intimate partner abuse and suicidality among college students [published online ahead of print April 27 2017]. Psychology of Violence. doi: 10.1037/vio0000122