Myths about suicide / Thomas Joiner.
Author: Joiner, Thomas E.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2010.
ISBN: 9780674048225 (hbk. : alk. paper)
0674048229 (hbk. : alk. paper)
Description: [ix], 288 p. : ill. ; 22 cm.
Suicide victims Psychology.
Contents: Introduction : Our most basic terror and our most tragic thoughts -- The suicidal mind -- Suicidal behavior -- Causes, consequences, and subpopulations -- Conclusion : Stigma--the future of a partial illusion.
Summary: Around the world, more than a million people die by suicide each year. Yet many of us know very little about a tragedy that may strike our own loved ones, and much of what we think we know is wrong. This book dismantles myth after myth to bring compassionate and accurate understanding of a massive international killer. Drawing on a fascinating array of clinical cases, media reports, literary works, and scientific studies, the author demolishes both moralistic and psychotherapeutic cliches. He shows that suicide is not easy, painless, cowardly, rash, vengeful, or selfish. It is not a manifestation of "suppressed rage" or a side effect of medication. It is not caused by breast augmentation, medicines, "slow" methods like smoking or anorexia, or, as some psychoanalysts once thought, things like masturbation. Threats of suicide, far from being idle, are often followed by serious attempts. People who are prevented once from killing themselves will not necessarily try again. The risk for suicide, he argues, is partly genetic and is influenced by often agonizing mental disorders. Vulnerability to suicide may be anticipated and treated. Most important, suicide can be prevented. The author, an expert whose own father's death by suicide changed his life, is relentless in his pursuit of the truth about suicide and deeply sympathetic to such tragic waste of life and the pain it causes those left behind.--Book jacket.