Perceived burdensomeness, familism, and suicidal ideation among Mexican women: enhancing understanding of risk and protective factors

Suicide Life Threat Behav. 2010 Dec;40(6):561-73. doi: 10.1521/suli.2010.40.6.561.


The interpersonal-psychological theory of suicide and a culturally-relevant construct, familism, was used to examine predictors of suicidal ideation among Mexican and Mexican American women in the United States. A sense of perceived burdensomeness toward others was expected to significantly predict suicidal ideation, especially among women who endorsed high levels of familism. Mexican and Mexican American outpatient women (N = 73) completed self-report measures and an interview measure of suicidal ideation. Main and interactive effects of perceived burdensomeness and familism were examined. Perceived burdensomeness, but not familism, significantly predicted suicidal ideation. The interaction hypothesis was not supported. These findings highlight perceived burdensomeness as a risk factor for suicidal behavior in Mexican and Mexican American women.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Family / psychology*
  • Female
  • Hispanic or Latino / psychology*
  • Hispanic or Latino / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychological Tests
  • Risk Factors
  • Suicidal Ideation*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires