The mind and learning play an important part in psychological conceptions. Sociological precepts on the other hand contend that learning or how we view the world is a product of social interactions involving role modeling and the cognitive process. Kolberg added the dimension of moral stages which defines key concepts of social integration. But as the researches in suicide showed, the process does always lead to integration but to alienation which is one of the major risk situations wherein an individual may develop suicidal ideation.
Psychological and sociological conceptions offer us an almost complete view of life except they are silent on the meaning of life and our value in the scheme of things in this big universe of existence. Religious precepts provide such a view and perhaps more important it gives us some methods of introspection and self reflection to temper ones personality. An integrated conceptual psychosocial model In this model developed for the purpose of identifying risk situations, it is apparent that suicide is a not an abrupt decision it a psychosocial path.
The psycho-emotional development of an individual could be aptly described by Kolbs learning cycle wherein an individual goes into reflections on what he/she observes to a belief or abstraction of that being observed, to experimentation of trying to do what was observed. These form the experiential base of a person (Figure 1). The environment could be described by amplifiers borrowing from Bruners evolution of the mind. The author added social amplifiers such social groups to Bruners model. The addition of social amplifiers is in consideration of Banduras social learning theory involving the significance of modeling in behavior.
Now, social groups could be classified into primary groups such as family and close friends presence of which significantly reduces risk of suicide. Meaning, that a primary group could be considered a medium of social integration. Secondary groups includes reference and relative groups (Cole, 1975). Reference groups are groups which are attractive to or serves as model to the individual. In the 9/11 crisis in New York, the fire fighters as such reference groups exhibiting valor and courage in the face of danger.
Relative groups are groups through which we compare ourselves mostly in a negative way. The primary and secondary groups are important in social integration of individuals and apparent rejection of such groups and the social order they represent a clear indication of social alienation. We also note that Gardners multiple intelligences theories injects the given diversity of human beings. Gardners identification of social skills as of the intelligences makes it significant supporting principle to the model.