How to help someone who is dealing with the suicide of a loved one

When someone you know commits suicide, you’re likely to find yourself on a rollercoaster of emotions. It’s incredibly tough facing such a huge loss, but there are things you can do to Support you get through it, and there are people you can turn if you’re finding coping with grief and loss to be particularly difficult.

This can help if:

  • someone committed suicide and you are not sure what you feel is okay
  • you want to know how to deal with the loss of a loved one
  • you think you need help coping with your pain.

It is normal to hear many things at the same time

When you are struggling with the suicide of a loved one, it is normal to experience a wide variety of emotions, including:


“This can’t be happening.” Right after loss, it can be hard to accept what’s happened. You may feel dull or want to deny the truth. Shock can have a purpose: it protects you from the initial pain of the loss, Supporting you get through things.


“How could they do this to me?” You may feel angry with your loved one, yourself, or medical professionals who couldn’t Support. It’s normal to feel angry. Tuttavia, prova a parlarne e a capire i tuoi sentimenti.


“Why is this happening?” You may not understand why something so tragic has happened, and that’s okay. It is difficult, sometimes impossible, to understand why someone has decided to take their own life. It may be better to accept the fact that you will never fully understand than to force yourself to find an answer that makes sense to you. Focus your energies on accepting and dealing with your feelings.

Broken down

“Why didn’t I notice something was wrong?” Try not to criticise yourself about what you did or didn’t do – it’s not your fault. Feeling guilty is perfectly normal as we often blame ourselves when something goes wrong, but it’s not something to take with us. Talk to someone you trust about how you feel.


“I’m too sad to do anything” Loss from suicide is traumatic; give yourself time to cry. If you’re feeling especially down, your reaction is normal. Remember that there isn’t a typical response to loss; grieving is as individual as the people we’ve loved.

How to deal with this?

There are things you can do to cope with death:

Accept your feelings

After death, people experience all kinds of emotions, some of which you may not be able to predict, but all of them are important. It’s okay to feel the things that you do.

Take care of yourself and your family

Eating well, exercising and sleeping well will help you get through each day and keep going. Taking it one day at a time and focusing on small tasks will make it easier to tackle. What may seem like an impossible situation will now improve.

Reach out and help others cope with this loss

Sharing stories can help anyone succeed and helping others will also benefit you in terms of feeling better. Talk to people in your life who are also grieving or who you can trust. Sharing your thoughts and feelings will help you feel less alone and remind you that there are people who support you.

Remember and celebrate the life of a loved one

Respect your relationship in the way that’s right for you: Maybe you can plant a memorial garden, make a donation to their favorite charity, or frame photos of fun times. Try to remember the best moments together.

Get professional help

It’s okay to admit that you need Support. Sometimes the pain of suicide can be too much to deal with alone, and there are people who can help you. Mental health professionals are trained to help people like you cope with the sadness, guilt, or anxiety associated with the death of a loved one.

You should contact a funeral counselor or professional therapist if:

  • blaming yourself for the loss or not avoiding it
  • feeling numb and disconnected for more than a few weeks
  • you are unable to carry out your daily activities.

It can be difficult to know where to find the right support you need. ReachOut NextStep is an anonymous online tool that recommends the right help options depending on what you need help with. Try to find out what support options are available.

What can I do now?

  • Talk to someone about how you feel.
  • Get personalized bereavement care options with ReachOut NextStep.
  • Find positive coping strategies.

Explore other topics

It is not always easy to find the right starting point. Our “What do you mean?” the tool can help you find out what’s right for you.

If you’ve lost someone through suicide, feelings can be overwhelming and seem out of control. For suicide survivors, there is no single way to best cope with the tragedy of suicide, but tools are available that can help you cope with the pain.

Help for survivors

Fortunately, there are many resources designed specifically for those who have suffered losses as a result of suicide. Here are a few to get you started. The resources listed below can be used for you or shared with other survivors seeking help.

  • Sadness After Suicide – This booklet contains strategies for dealing with people who have been affected by suicide.
  • Responding to Suicide Survivors – This booklet discusses appropriate and inappropriate ways to comfort suicide survivors.
  • Common Misconceptions About Suicide – This booklet covers common misconceptions about suicide as well as suicide facts and statistics to help you create awareness about suicide and suicidal thoughts.
  • Suicide Frequently Asked Questions – This booklet covers frequently asked questions about depression and suicide.
  • Ampio libretto sul lutto suicida: "Suicidio: affrontare la perdita di un amico o di una persona cara"
  • Carta portafoglio per vittime di suicidio: "Dopo il suicidio: affrontare il dolore"
  • Suicide survivors:A guide for those left behind, a book for survivors by Adina Wróbleska, one of the founders of SAVE
  • Book list for dealing with losses
  • Find a support group
  • Respect your loved one. Find out more about our Name Memorial Fund
  • Join SAVE at the annual Suicide Awareness Memorial
  • Nearly two dozen SAVE events per year where survivors play a key role in supporting the SAVE mission on their healing journey.

How to Support someone who is dealing with the suicide of a loved one

Coping with the suicide of a loved one is one of the most complex and embarrassing experiences you will ever go through. When a family member or loved one dies, questions arise; when someone knowingly takes their own life, the questions are insurmountable.

Why suicide?

Statistics show that in the United States, 30,000 people die each year from suicide due to:

  • Overdose of prescription or over-the-counter drugs or sleeping pills
  • A gunshot
  • Suspended
  • Choking, inhalation of carbon monoxide
  • Jumping from tall buildings
  • Wrist cuts
  • Jumping in front of fast moving vehicles

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Suicide, depression and mental illness

According to the non-profit organization Suicide. org, the leading cause of suicide is untreated depression. People with mental illness are also more likely to take their own lives. About 25-50% of patients with bipolar disorder will attempt suicide. Postnatal depression also poses a suicide risk. Many mothers with newborns are overworked and lack sleep. The feeling of slipping into a big hole and never getting out of it causes a lot of fear, and the line between what’s real and what’s not is blurry.

Society and suicide

Families of suicide victims often feel stigmatized or rejected by the rest of society. In 18th century Europe, when someone took their own life, their body was dragged through the streets. He was not buried properly and his family was forced to leave their home. The family was often ridiculed, accused and rejected by the rest of the community.

When a loved one dies suicide

If you are dealing with the suicide of a loved one, know that some of your feelings may include:

  • Remorse
  • Self-blame
  • Anger toward self and toward the person who died
  • Broken down
  • No control
  • Shame
  • Feeling rejected by friends
  • Fear
  • Hostility and frustration towards friends, family and myself for failing to prevent suicide

You need to know that you will realize over time that it is not your fault that your loved one has made the decision to take their own life. Read the accounts of other people who have lost a loved one in the same way you need to understand that life can go on for you. Join a group of suicide survivors to get the support they need.

When a close friend dies of suicide

If your friend has lost a loved one due to suicide, be sympathetic to that person during this time of intense grief. Here are some ways you can help your friend:

  • Listening
  • Let her talk about death
  • Refuse to judge
  • Offer help through a support group
  • Pay homage to the memory of a loved one who has passed away
  • Showing that you value her friendship and her as a person
  • Provide her with useful literature and reading resources

When a child dies of suicide

All parents feel guilty when their baby dies, thinking they could have done something to prevent his death. Research shows that parents of a child who died of suicide feel more guilty because they believe they could have prevented death if they had been more aware of the psychological problems or clinical depression that led to the suicide. They feel they can intervene and prevent the child from taking his own life. Dealing with the suicide of a loved one is tricky, but when a child takes his own life, parents and society grieve the most over the loss of such a young person. Reasons many teens consider suicide include:

  • No friends
  • He fights for self-esteem
  • I feel misunderstood
  • Low grades
  • Break up with a boy or girl
  • Bullying by peers or classmates
  • Difficult family life due to parental divorce and / or constant quarrels
  • Questions about sexual orientation

Suicide prevention programs

Substance abuse, in the form of drugs or alcohol, can lead to suicide. Teenagers who drink or take drugs a lot are at greater risk. Every school must have a suicide prevention program. Children, especially teenagers, need to have access to a phone number so they can hire someone who can help when they feel overwhelmed and are thinking about suicide. 911 can always be called when someone is planning to commit suicide.

Trying to help someone cope with death is embarrassing and difficult, and suicide is a million times worse. People who have lost loved ones not to a simple death, but to something painful and terrible like suicide, not only feel sadness on their shoulders, but experience anger, guilt, confusion, shock, terror and trauma that go beyond the “normal” after Death emotion. They may not have known that their loved one is unhappy; they may be angry at being left behind; they may feel guilty and hate each other for not being able to prevent it. Suicide victims are not limited to those who committed them: suicide leaves a lifelong mark on all who witness it.

Although this is a painful position, someone who tries to:Support someone who has lost a loved one in such a terrible way. Everyone’s emotions and reactions are different, which makes it so difficult to comfort them. Should you talk to them about it or try to get it out of your mind? Should you reassure them or try to avoid the topic? Should you let them cry or try to cure them? Helping someone who has lost a loved one to suicide is not only as embarrassing and difficult as natural death, it is also writing confusing code and is sometimes painful. However, it is not impossible. Here are some basic ways to support someone who is trying to cope with the suicide of a friend, family member, or loved one in general.


If you have lost a loved one through suicide, you are not alone. There are resources available to Support survivors of suicide loss cope.

How to take care of yourself

A loved one’s suicide is a challenging, confusing, and painful experience. If you’re struggling, the Lifeline is always here to Support.

Find a support group: You don’t have to cope with your loss alone. There are support groups designed specifically for those who have lost a loved one through suicide.

Do what you think is right: Don’t feel pressured to talk right away. If you choose to talk about your loss, a speech can give your friends and family the opportunity to support you appropriately.

To write: You may find it Supportful to write your feelings or to write a letter to your lost loved one. It can be a safe place where you can express some of the things you couldn’t say before you died.

Ask for Support:Don’t be afraid to let friends support you or seek out resources in your community, such as therapists, colleagues, or family members.

How to help

Supporting someone who has lost a loved one can be overwhelming and complex. There are ways to Support.

Accept their feelings: Loss survivors face complex feelings following the death of a loved one by suicide, such as fear, regret, shame, and anger. Accept their feelings, be compassionate and patient, and provide support without criticism.

Use tenderness during holidays and anniversaries:Events can bring to mind the memories of a lost loved one and emphasize their absence.

Use the name of a lost loved one: When talking to survivors, use the name of the person who died. This shows that you have not forgotten this important person and can facilitate a discussion on an often stigmatized topic.

There is a very common saying: “a witness to violence is a victim of violence”. Suicide is a form of self-inflicted violence, and witnessing a suicide or finding someone after death, whether you know the person or not, can be very traumatic. You may experience intense feelings and reactions – this is a normal reaction to an abnormal event.
People who have lost a loved one through suicide are commonly referred to as “suicide survivors” or “suicide survivors”. People who have witnessed a suicide death, have come upon the deceased’s body after the fact, or have heard or read graphic details regarding the death are called “witness survivors.”

Reactions to a suicidal death witness can include, but are not limited to:

shock, numbness, detachment,
sudden onset of physical symptoms
change in appetite or substance use
difficulty sleeping / nightmares
flashbacks / intrusive thoughts
worry and distraction

depression and / or suicidal thoughts
confusion, irritability, guilt
excessive alertness or anxiety
isolating or compulsive behavior
avoiding the area
time seems distorted

Do you or someone you care about need Support?

There is no “right” or “wrong” way to respond to trauma. While not everyone experiences symptoms, some people have symptoms that progress to depression, intense anxiety, or post-traumatic stress. If symptoms interfere with daily functioning, you may want to seek Support for yourself or for someone you are concerned about. Help is available.


Mental health consultant: Ask a pain specialist in a private or community mental health facility. A list of NH Community Mental Health Centers is available here.

Friends for Survival: 1-800-646-7322, please leave a message.

Victims Inc .: 603-335-7777 (NH Witness survivors)

For information on how to support a loved one who survived a witness, see The Grief Toolbox

Please visit the Get Help page for additional telephone numbers and Supporting supports and resources. If you are suicidal or are concerned about someone you think may be suicidal, call 911 or 1-800-273-TALK.

“Waiting for a suicide or discovering the body, be it a loved one or a stranger, leaves an image in the mind that fades very slowly and never completely disappears. It is important to talk about what you saw in the beginning (with a trained professional) when the impact is strong. Questa esperienza può cambiarti la vita”. Pat Rainboth, Victim’s Inc., NH

The development of NH survivor witness resources is a collaborative effort that includes members of the NH survivor witness community, NAMI NH, NH Bureau of Behavioral Health, and Victim’s Inc. The full article, "A New Approach to Helping a Suicide Witness: The Suicide Witness Outreach Program of NAMI New Hampshire "can be found here.

How to Support someone who is dealing with the suicide of a loved one

Stories like Meghan Markle are heartbreaking reminders that many people struggle with suicidal thoughts at some point in their life. Il suicidio è la seconda causa di morte nelle persone di età compresa tra i 10 e i 34 anni. As scary as it is, there are steps you can take to take care of your loved ones and friends. POPSUGAR asked two psychologists how to spot the warning signs that someone is contemplating suicide and what you can do to Support.

Signs that someone is struggling with suicidal thoughts

“Sometimes a friend tells you they are thinking about committing suicide, and other times changes in their behavior may let you know they are fighting,” said POPSUGAR Fatima Watt, PsyD, director of behavioral health services at Franciscan Children’s in Massachusetts. Watch out for these potential red flags:

  • Talk about wanting to die or commit suicide, or not having a reason to live
  • Talking, writing or drawing about suicide, even as a joke
  • Discover ways to kill yourself by researching or stockpiling
  • Express a feeling of despair
  • Withdraw or isolate yourself
  • Increased consumption of drugs or alcohol or other reckless behavior
  • Increased anxiety, agitation or panic
  • Extreme mood swings
  • Noticeable changes in eating or sleeping
  • Give away precious things

Dr Nazanin Moali, owner of Oasis2Care in Los Angeles, added, “One of the main signs that someone is considering suicide is to talk about death and how the lives of others will change if they are not there. a common theme to these people is the feeling of being trapped and unable to identify a purpose “.

How to help Someone Who’s Having Suicidal Thoughts

Dr. Watt stressed the importance of taking warning signs seriously and showing empathy towards a friend or loved one, even if you don’t quite understand what they are going through. “Stressful events like an argument or a breakup may seem trivial, but for your friend the pain can be enormous,” said Dr. Watt. Minimizing pain or dismissing their attention-seeking behavior can make them feel even more hopeless.

Start a conversation by reminding them how much you care. “Describe what you notice and offer to hear. Sometimes just knowing that others care for others can reduce feelings of hopelessness and isolation, “said Dr. Moali POPSUGAR. He also advises asking a friend directly if he has thought about ending his life, adding that this question does not “stick the idea into their minds” nor does it increase the likelihood of a suicide attempt.

Questo passaggio successivo è importante se qualcuno che ami sta effettivamente sperimentando pensieri suicidi: "Compila ma non prometti di mantenerlo segreto", ha detto il dottor Watt.

Instead, take steps to ensure they get professional Support. If the person is young, encourage them to contact an adult you trust and include the Suicide Prevention National Security Line number: 1-800-273-8255. You can even Support them set up an appointment with a therapist and offer to go with them to the first session if they want your support. “Remember that neither of you has to go through it alone,” said Dr. Watt.

How to Support someone who is dealing with the suicide of a loved oneWhen it was revealed in early August 2014 that actor / comedian Robin Williams had taken his own life, millions of people were shocked. For Williams’ family, friends, and fans alike, the news was devastating, but perhaps one of the most startling realizations about the incident—despite Williams regularly appearing in front of people worldwide for nearly four decades—was that no one saw it coming.

The subject of suicide is often presented as a taboo, making it an extremely difficult topic for many to discuss. However, people of all ages, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and physical fitness, are at risk of suicide. Suicide affects both the strong and the weak. It can touch anyone.

As family, friends, and confidants, we have a responsibility to help those we care about. September is considered the National Month for Suicide Prevention, which gives you the opportunity to learn as much as possible about this sensitive but urgent subject. How can we know if someone we love is having suicidal thoughts and how can we take preventative action?

Where do suicidal thoughts come from?

For people who have never seriously considered ending their life, it is difficult to understand the way a person with suicidal thoughts thinks. As the 10th-leading cause of death in the United States according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), however, understanding where suicidal thoughts come from is necessary if we want to Support individuals contemplating suicide.

Find a therapist

People who are suicidal often do not know how to obtain Support. While prolonged suffering is typical of suicide-related cases, it should be remembered that suicides don’t always try to just escape the pain. They sincerely believe that there are no good reasons to continue living and that the world will be a better place without them.

Identification of common risk factors for suicide

According to the American Suicide Prevention Foundation (AFSP), 90% of those who die from suicide have mental health problems at the time of death. Depression is one of the most common factors associated with suicidal ideation, but people with bipolar tendencies or other mood disorders are also at increased risk. Psychosis, excessive alcohol consumption, and the use of mind-altering drugs are other factors that can increase your impulsivity and increase your risk of suicide.

Suicide rates are highest among adults aged 45 to 64, closely followed by adults aged 85 and over. Children can also be suicidal; one in 65,000 children ages 10-14 dies by suicide each year in the U. S. Issues such as the death of a parent, divorce, bullying, sexual abuse, or social exclusion can increase the likelihood of suicide among preteens. The main problem in these cases is that parents and teachers often believe that young children will not try to kill themselves.

Regarding the possibility of suicide before adolescence, Baez said: "I have seen children as young as six attempting suicide, usually unsuccessful at that age. However, the intent is there, and that’s what matters. That’s what we have to address. "

The importance of therapy in suicide prevention

Therapy is one of the best suicide prevention tools. Mental health professionals usually approach the situation in one of two ways: by targeting the conditions underlying a person’s suicidal thoughts (depression, for example), or by targeting a person’s suicidal ideations directly.

The two main types of suicide prevention therapy are dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Dialectical behavior therapy Supports individuals make lifestyle changes that minimize suicidal thoughts and Supports people maintain control over emotions. Meanwhile, CBT teaches suicide prevention skills and encourages the application of learned skills, even if the person is in an active state of suicidal thoughts.

Suicide Prevention Strategies You Can Use

If a family member or friend is expressing suicidal thoughts, don’t ignore them. They might desperately need your Support. Here are a few tactful steps you can take to Support a loved one at risk for suicide:

  • Ask questions politely and honestly.
  • Explain why you are asking questions.
  • Express that your loved one is not alone. Tell them you are there for them and you will still be there.
  • If the person is uncomfortable talking to you, suggest a qualified third party such as a therapist, spiritual leader, or doctor.
  • Do not passively tell the person to simply call the hotline; lead the person to Supportful resources such as suicide hotlines and local mental health associations.
  • Help the person make an appointment and make an appointment with a mental health professional, even when they no longer have suicidal thoughts.

During National Suicide Prevention Month, you can take full advantage of the many articles, seminars, webinars, and other suicide prevention programs. Suicide can affect anyone, and being prepared can Support save lives.