While much progress has been made in recent years in identifying risk factors for suicide, one aspect that is frequently considered – but not yet fully understood – is the role that gender plays in the likelihood of suicidal thoughts and behaviors.
Statistics point clearly to one glaring truth: men die from suicide much more often than women. However, women experience thoughts of suicide and attempt suicide more often than men.
Suicide Rates by Gender: Gender Differences in Suicide
This “gender paradox” has been a part of the suicide prevention landscape for some time now. In recent years its complexity has increased as we begin to learn more about suicide in transgender and gender diverse (TGD) individuals.
Although additional research is clearly needed to more fully understand how gender and gender identification affect suicidal behavior, here are some known statistics on the subject:
1 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Suicide rising across the US. https://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/suicide/index.html
2 Bostwick, J. M., Pabbati, C., Geske, J. R., & McKean, A. J. (2016). Suicide attempt as a risk factor for completed suicide: even more lethal than we knew. American journal of psychiatry, 173(11), 1094-1100
3 National Center for Biotechnology Information, Prevalence of gender identity disorder and suicide risk amount transgender veterans utilizing veterans health administration care. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23947310
For more information
To learn more about how gender and gender identification affects suicidality, read “The Gender Paradox of Suicide: How Suicide Differs Between Men, Women, and Transgender/Gender Diverse Individuals” by Dr. Raymond P. Tucker.