Have you been bereaved by suicide?
People bereaved by suicide often experience complicated bereavement. There can be many other feelings in addition to grief including shock, social isolation, anger and guilt. The often sudden and sometimes unexpected nature of the death can also be extremely traumatic for those who lived with or knew the person.
In addition to the mix of emotions, bereavement following suicide often contains a prolonged search for an explanation for the person's death. This can make grieving more complex and draining, as often we can never really be certain of what the person was thinking or feeling when they chose to end their life. The search for an understanding of the suicide often leads us to think more deeply about our relationship with the person and can make the loss even more profound.
Bereavement following a suicide is different for everyone but usually leads to adjustments in your life and the way in which you view yourself and your relationships with others. As the process of grieving unfolds it is common for people to start to focus more on the purpose of their lives, their relationships, thoughts, hopes, beliefs and sense of future.
Grief is not a sign of poor coping skills, but rather a healthy part of the healing process. Usually the intensity of grief will rise and fall with small periods of relief between emotional times.