When a child dies by suicide: An interpretative phenomenological analysis study

Suicide is a global concern for the well-being of families. When parents experience their child’s death by suicide, their well-being can be substantially impaired. This study aimed to explore the lived experiences of parents whose children died by suicide. Data were collected from 25 mothers through interviews between 2019 and 2021 and analyzed using interpretive […]

Considerations for developing online bereavement support groups

The loss of a family member or friend can have profound psychological and physical implications, particularly for individuals without bereavement support services. Online support groups can be an effective means of extending services beyond the traditional modes of delivery. This is especially true for populations that include isolated individuals and those with limited support networks, […]

The clinical utility of spirituality and religion in meaning-making theory for suicide loss survivors: A scoping review

In the case of violent/traumatic loss due to a completed suicide, there can be an overwhelming and complicated grief reaction followed by a spiritual need for the process of sense making and finding meaning. Some emerging literature on suicide loss survivors (SLSs) denotes that suicide loss is more similar to other forms of bereavement but […]

Lessons learned: Forty years of clinical work with suicide loss survivors

The author has been a grief therapist in private practice for almost 40 years. The largest percentage of his clients have been suicide loss survivors, and in this article, the author reflects on the “lessons learned” about how grief therapy with survivors is both the same as, and very different from, work with clients bereaved […]

The myth of closure

Therapies for grief and loss have traditionally focused on the work of grieving. The goal was to reach an endpoint, now popularly called closure. There are, however, many people who, through no fault of their own,  find a loss so unclear that there can be no end to grief. They have not failed in the […]

Facing the music: Creative and experiential group strategies for working with grief and loss

This article outlines how group practitioners can harness creative strategies to assist addicted clients in verbalizing and addressing the losses associated with addictive disorders. This article overviews the implementation of an experiential process that includes a warm up activity, a psychodrama, and utilization of empty chair techniques to address addiction related grief and loss. In […]

Spirituality and loss: Approaches for counseling grieving adolescents

The death of a loved one has serious implications for adolescent growth and development. The authors review relevant research on the grief process and spirituality in adolescence, and they give a rationale for integrating spirituality into adolescent grief work. By way of a case illustration, they draw implications for counselors’ use of spirituality in addressing […]

Suicide risk after suicide bereavement: The role of loss-related characteristics, mental health, and hopelessness

Background Suicide bereavement is associated with increased risk for severe negative mental health outcomes and suicidality. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between mental health symptoms and suicidal ideation among suicide bereaved while taking multiple factors into account. Methods The sample consisted of N = 157 German suicide bereaved who were interested in receiving an online intervention. The Beck […]

Suicide loss survivors: Navigating social stigma and threats to social bonds

The complicated grief experienced by suicide loss survivors leads to feelings of abandonment, rejection, intense self-blame, and depression. Stigma surrounding suicide further burdens survivors who can experience rejection by their community and social networks. Research in the field of psychology has delved into the grieving process of suicide loss survivors, however the effects of suicide […]

Suicide loss in the modern era: An exploration of digital suicide loss obituaries

The unfortunate increase of suicides in the modern era has provided a vast body of obituaries ripe for analysis. We analyzed 52 suicide loss obituaries retrieved from Legacy.com, an online obituary aggregator, to determine how they differ from what we know about traditional obituaries and suicide reporting. These suicide obituaries combined emotional appeals with educational […]

Perceived social support and mental health after suicide loss

Background: Despite great need, social support is limited after suicide loss, which could contribute to worse mental health outcomes including increased suicidality among suicide loss survivors. Aims: To examine the associations between perceived social support, grief difficulties, depressive symptoms, suicidality, and personal growth among 195 suicide loss survivors. Method: The associations between perceived social support, grief difficulties, depressive symptoms, suicidality, […]

The process of long-term suicide bereavement: Responsibility, familial support, and meaning making

The purpose of this qualitative study was to develop understanding of the experience of long-term suicide loss survivors and begin to develop theory of the process of healing. Ten suicide loss survivors were interviewed. Our analyses identified three major categories—one harmful, one helpful, and one that helped to move from harmful to the helpful. Feelings […]

Anishinabek spirituality: Traversing grief and loss

This research was an interpretive study that sought to understand how Anishinabek individuals work through death and loss within the context of culture and spirituality. Multicultural counselling is discussed in the “tangential way in which issues of diversity and multiculturalism are addressed” (Parham, 1995, p. xi) within the counselling forum. Observing that “racial identity is […]

Shadows from the past: The mothering experience of women survivors of maternal suicide

Raising children, while challenging in the best of times, can be more complicated for a woman who lost her own mother during her childhood/adolescent years. This study examines the long-term impact of maternal suicide as evident in the mothering experiences of 12 Israeli women. Findings The participants’ descriptions reveal a constant Sisyphean struggle to move […]

Prolonged grief symptomatology following violent loss: The mediating role of meaning

Background: Prolonged Grief Disorder (PGD) is over-represented among those who have lost loved ones to violent causes. To tailor PGD interventions for this vulnerable population it is critical to examine the aetiology of PGD specifically in the context of violent death bereavement. Previous studies have suggested that violent loss increases symptoms of PGD by hindering the […]

Handbook of traumatic loss: A guide to theory and practice.

The Handbook of Traumatic Loss adopts a broad, holistic approach that recognizes traumatic loss much more fully as a multidimensional human phenomenon, not simply a medical condition. Initial chapters build a foundation for understanding traumatic loss and explore the many ways we respond to trauma. Later chapters counterbalance the individualistic focus of dominant approaches to traumatic loss by […]

Prospective study of major loss life events and risk for suicidal thoughts and behaviors among adolescents and young adults.

This prospective, naturalistic study examined the association between major loss life experiences, other psychiatric risk factors (depression, hopelessness, and anxiety), and suicidal thoughts and behaviors (STBs) among adolescents followed through young adulthood for up to 14 years. Major loss life events were related to subsequent increases in STBs. Major loss life events were primarily related to […]

Support groups for suicide loss: A handbook for Aotearoa New Zealand.

Includes: • practical steps for setting up and running a group, based on research and international guidelines • experiences and comments from people in New Zealand who are running support groups • examples and

Suicide loss survivors’ experiences with therapy: Implications for clinical practice.

Over two-thirds of suicide loss survivors, those who have lost a loved one to suicide, seek individual therapy following their loss. However, nothing is known about what survivors find helpful about therapy or how therapy impacts their grief. An online survey was conducted June 2012–March 2013 with a convenience sample of 197 survivors primarily from […]

Prolonged grief and depression after unnatural loss: Latent class analyses and cognitive correlates.

We examined symptom profiles of prolonged grief disorder (PGD) and depression. ¥ Data were obtained from people confronted with violent/unnatural loss. Latent class analysis revealed resilient, PGD, and combined PGD/Depression classes. Educational level, time since loss, and age predicted class-membership. Endorsement of negative cognitions differentiated between classes.

Attachment, continuing bonds, and complicated grief following violent loss: Testing a moderated model.

Continuing Bonds were less predictive of Complicated Grief symptomatology for individuals with high anxiety and low avoidance, and most predictive of intense grieving for bereaved people whose attachment styles were more highly avoidant and minimally anxious. These findings suggest the relevance of evaluating the appropriateness of clinical techniques that emphasize or deemphasize the CB for […]

When someone dies: An emotional and theoretical approach to understanding loss and bereavement.

This DVD explores how three individuals experienced loss when someone close to them died and traces how their grief changed with the passage of time.

Enduring love, transforming loss.

A 50-minute research-based documentary that answers the research question ÒWhat is the experience of living and transforming with loss for mothers whose babies died?Ó The mothers articulated their descriptions eloquently, describing the suffering of the loss of their baby while creating rituals of remembrance and celebrating the baby as a treasured family member. They appreciated […]