My Grief Is Overwhelming
Each year, over 32,000 people are victims of suicide, leaving behind devastated family members and friends. There are millions of survivors of suicide who, like you, are trying to cope with this heartbreaking loss. If you have lost someone to suicide, you are not alone. There are resources available that can help you through this extremely difficult time in your life and help you to cope with your grief.
Coping With Suicide Loss
- Some survivors struggle with what to tell other people. Although you should make whatever decision feels right to you, most survivors find it best to simply acknowledge that their loved one was a victim of suicide.
- You may find it helpful to reach out to family and friends. Because some people may not know what to say, you may need to take the initiative about the suicide, share your feelings and ask for help.
- It may seem difficult, but maintaining contact with other people is critically important in the stress-filled months after the loss.
- Each person grieves in his or her own way. If it helps to go to the cemetery, for instance, by all means do so. If it helps to stay away, don’t feel guilty about your decision.
- Anniversaries, birthdays and holidays can be especially hard, so you might want to think about whether to continue old traditions or make new ones. Unexpected waves of sadness are a normal part of grieving.
- Children experience the same sensations of grief as adults, and are especially at risk of feeling abandoned or guilty. Listen to them, assure them that they are not to blame, and answer their questions honestly in an age-appropriate fashion.
- You may find comfort in community, religious or spiritual activities, including talking to a trusted member of the clergy.
- Be kind to yourself. Enjoying life is not a betrayal of your lost loved one. Go on with your daily activities, return to the things that once brought you pleasure.
- The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s website (www.afsp.org) has extensive book lists, practical advice, shared stories and other information to help you cope.
- Counseling with a mental health professional can help you through the grieving process.
Support Group Meetings
- Lower Eastern Shore Suicide Grievers' Support Group
Caring, non-judging, listening people who have experienced a loss too. Meetings are free of charge.
Where: Worcester County Health Department, 9730 Healthway Drive (across from Atlantic General Hospital)
When: Meets the 3rd Wednesday of every month at 6:00 p.m.
You may find it comforting to talk with others who have lost a loved one to suicide. The Jesse Klump Memorial Fund, as part of its mission to end suicide, holds regularly-scheduled meetings of survivors. The meetings are led by trained facilitators who, may have suffered a loss to suicide. Support groups can be places of compassion, understanding and healing. There is no cost to attend and attendance is always voluntary. Please consider joining us.
Suicide Related Links
The websites listed below have many other resources which can help you find information you may be looking for.
- American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
- American Association of Suicidology
- Suicide Prevention Resource Center
- Worcester Youth and Family Counseling Services
- Worcester County Health Department
A confidential and secure place to talk about problems and stress that may be difficult to talk about anywhere else. The Chat Line is available between the hours of 4pm and 9pm EST for Maryland youth.