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Exploring the Interpersonal Communication Aspects of Suicide: A Research Agenda for Communi-Suicidology
Unformatted Document Text:  Interpersonal Communication Aspects of Suicide 13 not to take their own lives. Also, how are individuals persuaded and how do they persuade themselves to take commit suicide? As opposed to the controlled experiments and hypothetical situations normally employed to study persuasion, scholars should analyze how emotions and irrationality operate in persuasive attempts such as those involving suicide/attempts. Other Potential Research Areas Although not detailed in this model, the bereavement process is also an interpersonal communication process among the people who the suicide leaves behind. There have only been a handful of studies regarding this interaction (Gutierrez, 1999; McIntosh, 1992; Rudestam, 1992; Valente, & Saunders, 1993). Again, communication scholars performed none of these studies. Future studies should utilize the interpersonal model of communi-suicidology proposed in this paper to further explore the communicative aspects of suicide between two people. To date, communication scholars have not played a significant role in the study of suicide, despite the fact that it has documented communicative aspects. The tools of communication studies can help researchers and practitioners, alike, to understand the processes represented in the present model. As Vartabedian (1988) noted, “a pictorial representation could provide an important ‘therapeutic tool’ for caregivers” (p. 12). With additional research, this model can be further developed to address the

Authors: Miraldi, Peter.
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Interpersonal Communication Aspects of Suicide 13
not to take their own lives. Also, how are individuals persuaded
and how do they persuade themselves to take commit suicide? As
opposed to the controlled experiments and hypothetical situations
normally employed to study persuasion, scholars should analyze
how emotions and irrationality operate in persuasive attempts
such as those involving suicide/attempts.
Other Potential Research Areas
Although not detailed in this model, the bereavement process
is also an interpersonal communication process among the people
who the suicide leaves behind. There have only been a handful of
studies regarding this interaction (Gutierrez, 1999; McIntosh,
1992; Rudestam, 1992; Valente, & Saunders, 1993). Again,
communication scholars performed none of these studies.
Future studies should utilize the interpersonal model of
communi-suicidology proposed in this paper to further explore the
communicative aspects of suicide between two people. To date,
communication scholars have not played a significant role in the
study of suicide, despite the fact that it has documented
communicative aspects. The tools of communication studies can
help researchers and practitioners, alike, to understand the
processes represented in the present model. As Vartabedian (1988)
noted, “a pictorial representation could provide an important
‘therapeutic tool’ for caregivers” (p. 12). With additional
research, this model can be further developed to address the


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