Psychosocial determinants of suicide attempts among black south african adolescents: a qualitative analysis

H.N. Shilubane*, R.A.C. Ruiter, A.E.R. Bos, B. van den Borne, S. James, P.S. Reddy

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

23 Citations (Web of Science)


In South Africa, one in five adolescents attempt suicide. Suicide attempts continue to rise. We aimed to identify psychosocial target points for future educational interventions. One-to-one semi-structured interviews were conducted to explore psychosocial factors associated with past suicide attempts among suicide survivors in Limpopo province, South Africa. A total of 14 adolescents (eight girls and six boys) who recently attempted suicide were interviewed. Lack of knowledge of available counsellors, conflicts in interpersonal relationships, perceived accusations of negative behaviour, inadequate social support, past family and peer suicide attempts and poor living circumstances were factors found to be related with suicide attempts. This study suggests that availability and access to counselling is essential in the prevention of suicide among young people, at both the individual level and family level.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-189
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Youth Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012


  • suicide
  • rural youth
  • RISK

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