Depressed people's perceptions of how they were brought up remain remarkably consistent over time regardless of the levels of depression they are experiencing. Studies have demonstrated links between suicidal thoughts and suicidal behaviour in individuals and their perception of rejecting, guilt-engendering and neglectful parents. Childhood abuse, and specifically childhood sexual abuse, have also been found to relate to suicidality. A ten-year study of 343 patients referred to a mood disorders unit in Sydney compared their perceptions of their childhood with the number of times they had tried to kill themselves. The researchers found that female patients who perceived themselves as rejected and/or neglected by either parent in childhood had a greater chance of making at least one suicide attempt in their life. However, there was no such link in male patients.
Ehnvall, A. ... [et al] - Perception of reglecting and neglectful parenting in childhood relates to lifetime suicide attempts for females - but not for males Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica January 2008, 117, 50-56