Individuals Use to Promote Healing after a Suicide Attempt: Action/Interaction Strategies

Sunday, 27 July 2014: 3:15 PM

Fan-Ko Sun, PhD
Department of Nursing, I-Shou University, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan
Ann Long, PhD
School of Nursing, University of Ulster, Newtownabbey, United Kingdom
Mei-Ting Chi, RN
Department of Medical Administration, Kaohsiung Veterans General Hospital, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Ti Lu, MD, MS
Department of Psychiatry, Kaohsiung Veterans General Hospital, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan


It is a very difficult task to recover following a suicide attempt. Individuals struggle with numerous difficulties following a suicide attempt. Some individuals can recover from a suicide attempt but other individuals re-attempt or commit suicide. The aim of this study was to develop a theory to guide the healing and recovering process, which human-beings traverse following a recent suicide attempt and the main aim of this paper was to discover the action/interaction strategies that they use on this life journey.


A qualitative approach using Grounded theory was used in this research. Data were collected in a medical centre hospital in Taiwan from 2011 to 2012. Theoretical sampling was used to guide the selection of participants. The final number of interviews conducted to achieve data saturation was 14 patients who had recovered from a suicide attempt and returned to normal life at least one year later. Data were analysed using the constant comparative method together with NVivo Version 9 to aid the process of data analysis.  


A theory was developed to guide the suicidal individuals to help in healing after their suicide attempt. Three categories and eight subcategories surfaced in relation to the ‘action/interaction strategies’ used. They were: becoming flexible and diverse thinking (Imaginative thinking, Hopeful thinking); re-building and re-gaining self (Changing myself, Believing in self, Self affirmations, Retrieving the value of life), and trying to enjoy the pleasures of life (Looking for methods to cope with stress, Looking for happy times).


Nurses could use the findings of this paper as a guide to help people recover following a suicide attempt and, perhaps, help prevent further attempts.