Bereavement due to suicide

Health Talk Online, the UK's largest online collection of real-life health stories and shared experiences of health and illnesses, has launched a new section that gives a unique voice to people who have been bereaved by suicide, including the experiences of a Christian.

Bereavement Due To Suicide' is based on research led by the University of Oxford. Based on interviews carried out by the DIPEx Health Experiences research group at the University of Oxford, and guided by an advisory panel which includes people who have been through this type of bereavement as well as counsellors, the police, coroners and health professionals, the new section has the voices of 40 people from many different backgrounds and from throughout the UK. You can see and hear them talking and read a wide range of experiences and perspectives, from people who are young or old, from some who have recently been bereaved and from others who reflect on a suicide that happened some years ago.

People talk of how they have come to terms with the knowledge that someone has taken their own life, and of their first reactions and changing emotions. They speak of telling others, the involvement of the press and police, the inquest, practical matters, the funeral or commemoration, and sources of support. But these are not just any 'dial-a-quote' case-histories. They have been collected in face-to-face interviews by experienced researchers and are representative of the full range of people?s experiences. The new section includes summaries of the key issues that matter to people when faced with the aftermath of a suicide: why they thought the suicide took place, suicide notes, GPs and psychiatrists, seeing the body or not being able to do so, telling children and young people, the burial or cremation, the inquest and reactions to the verdict.

They also cover informal support, help and support from professionals, help from Cruse Bereavement Care, self-help groups, finding help via the internet, support for young children, coping with grief and keeping memories alive, adjusting to life without the person who died, and anniversaries and other special occasions.

'Bereavement Due To Suicide' has an introduction by Libby Purves and her partner and can be found on the site under the topic 'Living with Dying', introduced by Dawn French, or by clicking here.

Mike Bush, 27/03/2009