After a suicide, each person grieves in their own way and at their own pace. There isn’t a normal or right way to grieve.
Losing someone by suicide is painful and often unexpected. Grief doesn’t follow a schedule. You may feel numb and in shock for the first few weeks or longer. Over time, your thoughts and feelings will change as you go through your grief. You’ll feel a lot of pain some days and less pain as time passes. It’s common to have setbacks as you work through your grief.
Grief is harder to deal with when a death is sudden and you don’t have a chance to say goodbye. You’ll likely want to try to find out why this happened. As you work through your grief, you’ll slowly learn to be OK with not having the answers to all your questions.
You may still feel pain and loss after several months. But friends and family may offer their sympathy less. They might not ask how you’re doing as often. Remember that it’s OK to ask them for help and let them know you want to talk.
You’ll have good days and bad days. You may feel grief in sudden and unexpected ways. Sometimes coping with the loss will feel harder, such as on the anniversary of the death, birthdays, and holidays. You may also have stronger feelings in the weeks leading up to these days.
Grief takes energy. Forgive and be kind to yourself when you can’t do the things you think you should do. In the beginning, you may use all your energy just to get through the day, especially if you have to care for others, deal with issues in your life, or make arrangements after the death.
Here are some tips for taking care of yourself:
Current as of: March 22, 2021
Author: Provincial Injury Prevention Program, Alberta Health Services
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