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Suicidal Mind and Dr. Shneidman

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I haven’t read any books on suicide before. So I thought this book was pretty interesting and it gave me a lot of good information on suicide. This book made me realize that there are many “commonalities” between suicidal people. The states that the common emotion in suicide is hopelessness-helplessness.

Dr. Shneidman concludes that the best way to understanding suicide is not through the study of the brain structure, nor study of social statistics and mental disease, but through the study of human emotions.

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Dr. Shneidman believes that those persons who commit suicide do so to either put a side or to stop unbearable psychological pain, due to the constant frustration for important psychological needs. The psychological needs that Dr. Shneidam mentions, were first described by Henry A Murray in Explorations in Personality (1938). According to Dr. Shneidman, suicides are partially part to one of the five number of frustrated psychological needs: (1) prevented love, acceptance, and belonging: (2) fractured control, and predictability: (3) assaulted self-image and avoidance or shame: (4) ruptured key relationships and attendant grief: (5) excessive anger, rage and hostility.

Suicide isn’t so much a factor of the psychological needs but frustration caused by basic needs for that person to function. In general a therapist’s or psychotherapist’s goal. Is to recognize a suicidal patients needs. So the therapist can help the patient see the other alternatives instead of suicide. Dr. Shneidman uses three cases from the files of a UCLA thanatologist. That showed, that killing ones self is not easy. The first case is about a lady called Ariel Page 2Wilson, who chose self-immolation, but survived with really bad burns on her body. Ariel’s central need was succorance, the need to be taken care of, loved and succored. In the second case is a lady called Beatrice, who wrote out her life story while she was Dr. Shneidman’s patient. Her method of suicide was knives and starvation. She was a very different case to Ariel Wilson. Beatrice had a great need for order, sanctuary, and a world that she could depend on, but what mostly showed of her intense need was how she was born with fear and anxiety. For example she would reject other people before they might possibly reject her. It’s still unclear whether she has stopped her attempts at suicide. Castro the third patient was unable to speak since he had no more face after attempting to blow his brains out. Castro suffered from constriction, isolation, confused logic, and profound hopelessness. All three cases had different psychological needs and helped me understand why basic needs for people are so important. I found that this book was interesting. I thought book was kinda sad at times cause some of the cases that were shown and the people wrote was depressing. But to honest I wish I did a report that I could relate more to me. Cause I’ve never thought of committing and don’t know anyone suicidal or who has already committed suicide. But this book did let me have a different perspective on suicidal people. This book answered my questions on suicide. “Why do people commit suicide?” Suicidal people usually are suffering from emotional problems. The frustration of psychological needs is what leads them to killing themselves. The book also said that everyone at least once in their lives thought about committing suicide.

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Cite this Suicidal Mind and Dr. Shneidman

Suicidal Mind and Dr. Shneidman. (2018, Dec 21). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/suicidal-mind-and-dr-shneidman/

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