As with any sudden or unexpected death, those who have lost a loved one to death by suicide (often called survivors of suicide) have not had time to say goodbye. This suddenness, coupled with the violence of a death by suicide and common misunderstanding and stigma surrounding the death, can greatly intensify, complicate and extend the time of the grief process. It is important to remember and know that it may be normal for survivors to face guilt about being unable to save the life of their loved one and spend time asking “why” their love one took their own life before being able to move forward in the grief process. It is also important to know that survivors may be at increased risk of death by suicide themselves so that professional mental health support is readily available if needed. Anyone who believes or suspects that they are facing Complicated Grief and/or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is encouraged to get professional mental health support.

AFSP, Grief Support Group Listing

Books for Survivors of Suicide Loss....A comprehensive listing for parents, moms, dads, women, men, teens, friends, clinicians, poetry, inspiration etc.

SAVE; Suicide Bereavment Support Group Database

Resouce Guide For Survivors of Suicide Loss

Postvention is defined as actions taken after a death by suicide. This section contains many best practice resources and information for use in a variety of environments to ensure careful and sensitive care for families and communities impacted by a death by suicide.

Postvention Goals for Family and Friends

  1. Provide support for normal grief process and minimize complicated grief and guilt reactions
  2. Reduce the risk of further suicidal behavior
  3. Connect family and friends to health and mental health providers if needed and to community resources
  4. Education and information about steps family and friends can take to help prevent suicide clusters and contagion in the immediate aftermath of a suicide in the way that they approach funerals and memorial services and long term in community suicide prevention and postvention activities

After a Suicide: Toolkit for Schools

The Role of Survivors in Preventing Suicide

More Information

Postvention in Schools

Information for Surivivors of Suicide Loss

SOS: A Handbook for Survivors of Suicide

Available in Spanish at SOS_Espanol.pdf

Surviving a Suicide Loss: A Resource and Healing Guide

This is a brief guide to help people cope with a loss by suicide. It includes information on several different ways to connect with other survivors of suicide loss.

Suicide Prevention Resource Center

Web: | E-mail: | Phone: 877-GET-SPRC (438–7772)