Background: The “self” has been implicated in the development of a range of psychological disorders. While a growing body of literature has emerged exploring the Interpersonal Psychological Theory of Suicide (IPTS), little research has been conducted on the construct of self-hate and its relationship with suicidal ideation. The aims of this study were to: 1) develop and validate a brief self-report instrument of self-hate; and, 2) explore the relationship between self-hate, suicidal ideation, and the two main factors of the IPTS, perceived burdensomeness and thwarted belongingness. Methods: Initial development of the item pool involved an expert panel and the development of the Self-Hate Scale included exploratory and confirmatory factor analyses using a large community sample. Results: A 7-item Self-Hate Scale was developed, which exhibited a reliable unidimensional factor structure. High self-hate was found to predict suicidal ideation, while the relationship between low/moderate self-hate and suicidal ideation was partially moderated by the level of thwarted belongingness. The study provided limited evidence for the IPTS’ main predictions. Limitations: While the current study provided support for the psychometric properties of the Self-Hate Scale, the scale will need to be replicated and validated using clinical populations. Conclusions: The Self-Hate Scale is a brief, psychometrically valid measure of self-hate that has the potential to be useful in suicide risk assessment.
- Interpersonal-psychological theory of suicide
- Perceived burdensomeness
- Suicidal ideation
- Thwarted belongingness