Unsatisfactory results for the aim of reducing suicide rates have motivated the creation of new models to predict suicide, such as the ideation-to-action framework, which focuses on differentiating those with suicidal ideation and those who attempt suicide. The most recently published theory on the ideation-to-action framework is the Three-Step Theory (3ST). Step 1 proposes that the combination of pain and hopelessness causes suicidal ideation, step 2 proposes that ideation increases when pain and hopelessness surpass connectedness, and step 3 proposes that strong suicidal ideation escalates to action when the person has the capacity to attempt suicide. The theory’s concepts are intentionally conceptualized very broadly. The current study aims to compare the traditional conceptualization measurements of the Three-Step Theory with a broader range of predictors. We aim to test the first two steps of the theory through a mediation model and examine if connectedness serves as a mediator in the relationship between psychological pain and hopelessness in predicting the severity of suicidal ideation. We hypothesized that adding a broader conceptualization of pain (i.e., physical pain) and connectedness (i.e., perceived meaning of life, social pleasure, affective empathy) will better account for the level of suicidal ideation. We also hypothesized that connectedness serves as a mediator in the relationship between psychological pain and hopelessness in predicting suicide ideation severity. Following exclusions and removing missing data, 97 participants were available for analysis. Results showed that one of our novel measurements of connectedness, perceived burdensomeness, mediated the relationship between psychological pain and suicidal ideation severity.
Bedwell, Jeffrey S.
Bachelor of Science (B.S.)
College of Sciences
Garcia Villasana, Ana V., "Mediation Analysis of a Broader Conceptualization of the Three-Step Theory of Suicidality" (2022). Honors Undergraduate Theses. 1137.