Reflection, brooding, and suicidality: A preliminary study of different types of rumination in individuals with a history of major depression

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Objective.To examine the relationship between reflection, brooding, and suicidality in participants with a history of major depression.Method.Participants were divided into three groups – those who had never been suicidal (N=11), suicide ideators (N=11), and suicide attempters (N=10). Participants completed the Ruminative Responses Scale to explore scores on the brooding and reflection subscales in each group.Results.There was a significant interaction between groups and type of self-focused thinking: suicide attempters more strongly endorsed brooding than reflection, whilst non-suicidal, but previously depressed individuals showed the reverse trend. Suicidal and non-suicidal groups differed significantly in levels of reflection, but did not differ significantly in levels of brooding.Conclusions.Deficits in reflection appear to be linked to suicidality in major depression consistent with evidence of problem-solving deficits in these groups.

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