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Feelings experienced after previous suicide attempt by the individual and the reaction of close relatives or friends to previous attempt
  1. P de Silva*,
  2. D de Silva,
  3. S Jayasinghe,
  4. R de Alwis Seneviratne,
  5. M Abeyratne,
  6. D Rajapakse,
  7. N Mendis
  1. Correspondence Ministry of Health, 18/3 Wijesekara Road, Dehiwala 001, Sri Lanka


Introduction The feelings experienced after a suicide attempt by the individual and the reaction of close relatives or friends to attempt is important in designing preventive mechanisms.

Objective To describe the experience of the patient after the previous suicide attempt and the reaction of close relatives or friends to the previous suicide attempt.

Method From 668 presented with attempted suicides presented to National Hospital of Sri Lanka (April to December 2002), 300 were randomly selected and interviewed using a pretested questionnaire.

Results Previous suicidal attempts were present in 29 (9.7%) out of total 300 attempted suicides. The feelings following the previous suicide attempt were as follows: 19 felt pity (65.5%), 16 felt embarrassed (55.2%), 13 felt ashamed (44.8%), 11 felt afraid (37.9%), 10 felt angry (34.5%), 4 felt released (13.8%) and 2 felt proud (6.9%). Regarding reaction of close relatives or friends to last attempt, 25 (86.2%) of patients felt that others showed pity for patient, 11 (45.8%) patients felt that some people showed understanding, 16 (57.1%) felt that no one showed anger or irritation, 21 (75%) felt that others did not show embarrassment or avoided them, 24 (85.7%) felt no body laughed at them, 23 (82.1%) felt others did not ignore them.

Conclusion The feeling following the suicidal attempts was of shame and embarrassment. The close relatives or friends of attempted suicides do not show negative emotions.

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