Why hasn't the suicide rate dropped? ( #suicide #health #psychology )
Brendan Koerner wonders. He thinks it might have something to do with "desperate economic circumstances and poor mental health." But if that's true, wouldn't the rate be going down, with the advent of supposedly remarkable pharmaceutical anti-depressants? My guess is that suicide is mostly driven by either social alienation or shame -- you have no friends, or you don't think you deserve them. If this is the case, different cultures, with differing attitudes and values associated with social interaction, should have different rates, and they do. Maybe suicide is a cultural constant -- perhaps along with income inequality and mating patterns.