A new study has revealed that adult children of divorce are more likely to have seriously considered suicide than their peers from intact families.
University of Toronto investigators examined gender specific differences among a sample of 6,647 adults, of whom 695 had experienced parental divorce before the age of 18.
The study found that men from divorced families had more than 3 times the odds of suicidal ideation in comparison to men whose parents had not divorced.
Adult daughters of divorce had 83 per cent higher odds of suicidal ideation than their female peers who had not experienced parental divorce.
The link between divorce and suicidal ideation was particularly strong in families where childhood stressors like parental addiction, physical abuse, and parental unemployment also occurred.
For women who had not experienced these adverse childhood experiences, the association between parental divorce and suicidal ideation was no longer significant.
But even in the absence of these childhood stressors, men who had experienced parental divorce had twice the odds of having seriously considered suicide at some point in their life compared to men from intact families.
Researchers believe this could be due to the absence of close contact with a father that may occur post-divorce.
The study has been published online this week in the journal Psychiatry Research.