Grief After Suicide
Understanding the Consequences and Caring for the Survivors
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here are over 38,000 suicide deaths each year in the United States alone, and the numbers in other countries suggest that suicide is a major public health problem around the world. A suicide leaves behind more victims than just the individual, as family, friends, co-workers, and the community can be impacted in many different and unique ways following a suicide. And yet there are very few professional resources that provide the necessary background, research, and tools to effectively work with the survivors of a suicide.
This edited volume addresses the need for an up-to-date, professionally-oriented summary of the clinical and research literature on the impact of suicide bereavement on survivors. It is geared towards mental health professionals, grief counselors, clergy, and others who work with survivors in a professional capacity. Topics covered include the impact of suicide on survivors, interventions to provide bereavement care for survivors, examples of promising support programs for survivors, and developing a research, clinical, and programmatic agenda for survivors over the next 5 years and beyond.
Table of Contents
Cain, Foreword. Jordan, McIntosh, Introduction. Part I: The Impact of Suicide. Jordan, McIntosh, Suicide Bereavement: Why Study Survivors of Loss? Jordan, McIntosh, Is Suicide Bereavement Different? A Framework for Rethinking the Question. McIntosh, Jordan, The Impact of Suicide on Adults. Cerel, Aldrich, The Impact of Suicide on Children and Adolescents. Gutin, McGann, Jordan, The Impact of Suicide on Professional Caregivers. Part II: Helping Survivors. Jordan, Feigelman, McMenamy, Mitchell, Research on the Needs of Survivors. McGann, Gutin, Jordan, Guidelines for Postvention Care After the Suicide of a Client. Berkowitz, McCauley, Schuurman, Jordan, Organizational Postvention After Suicide Death. Jordan, Principles of Grief-counseling with Adult Survivors. Webb, Grief Counseling with Child and Adolescent Survivors of Parental Suicidal Deaths. Sands, Jordan, Neimeyer, The Meanings of Suicide: A Narrative Approach to Healing. Jordan, Group Work with Suicide Survivors. Kaslow, Samples, Rhodes, Gantt, A Family Oriented and Culturally Sensitive Postvention Approach with Suicide Survivors. Part III: Promising Programs of Support for Survivors. US Programs. Campbell, Baton Rouge Crisis Intervention Center's LOSS Team Active Postvention (APM) Approach. Marshall, Bolton, The Link Counseling Center and the Link's National Resource Center for Suicide Prevention and Aftercare. Hurtig, Bullitt, Kates, Samaritans Grief Support Services. Archibald, Heartbeat Survivors After Suicide, Inc. Koenig, Friends for Survival. Morris, Farberow, Hirsch, Community Mental Health Center's Survivors After Suicide Programs (SAS). Schwartz, The Retrospective Profile and the Facilitated Family Retreat. Beal, Parents of Suicides: E-mail Support Group. Rubey, Loving Outreach to Survivors of Suicide Program (LOSS): A Postvention Service for Survivors of Suicide. Mitchell, Wesner, A Bereavement Crisis Debriefing Intervention for Survivors After a Suicide. Harrington-Lamorie, Ruocco, The Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS). Linn-Gust, American Association of Suicidology and Survivors of Suicide Loss. Harpel, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's Survivor Initiatives. International Programs. Chow, Yip, Grief After Suicide: A Hong Kong Chinese Perspective. Bycroft, Fisher, Beaton, International Perspectives on Suicide Bereavement: The Australian Example. Dyregrov, International Perspectives on Suicide Bereavement: Suicide Survivors and Postvention in Norway. Grad, International Perspectives on Suicide Bereavement: Slovenia. Agee, A New Zealand Perspective on Suicide Bereavement. Andriessen, Survivors After Suicide: A Comprehensive Suicide Survivor Program in Flanders, Belgium. Part IV: Conclusions. McIntosh, Jordan, Going Forward: A Research Agenda for Suicide Survivor Studies. Jordan, McIntosh, Bolton, Campbell, Harpel, Linn-Gust, A Call to Action: Building Clinical and Programmatic Support for Suicide Survivors.
John R. Jordan, Ph.D., is Founder & Director until 2007, of the Family Loss Project, Sherborn, MA. Clinician in private practice in Massachusetts and Rhode Island for over 30 years, specializing in grief counseling. Lead trainer: Survivor Support Group Facilitator training and Professional Advisor to the Survivor Council, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Trainer: Assessing & Managing Suicide Risk Workshop, American Association of Suicidology. Professional Consultant: Survivor Support Services, Samaritans of Boston. Author of "After Suicide Loss: Coping with Your Grief" (a book for suicide survivors), and author or co-author of more than 20 articles on suicide survivors, grief counseling, and bridging research and practice in thanatology.
John L. McIntosh, Ph.D. - Associate Dean, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences and Professor of Psychology, Indiana University- South Bend. Past President, American Association of Suicidology. Author of over 50 journal articles, 20 book chapters, and six books on suicide, suicide survivors, and gerontology.
"Death by suicide is a manifold catastrophe, as the bereaved can attest. The experience of those bereaved by suicide cries out for more attention, both from research and from clinical perspectives. In this volume led by Drs. Jordan and McIntosh, this call is answered, with rigor, compassion, and wisdom, and from essential perspectives ranging from the international, to the impact on youth, to the impact on caregivers." - Thomas Joiner, PhD, The Robert O. Lawton Distinguished Professor of Psychology, Florida State University
"In this book, John Jordan and John McIntosh offer clinicians a resource of great value.While the field often offers lip service to the phrase "evidence-based", Jordan and McIntosh deliver a work that integrates theory, research, and sound clinical acumen. This book will become the essential resource for understanding suicide and assisting survivors of all ages in coping with the aftermath." - Kenneth J. Doka, PhD, Professor, The College of New Rochelle; Senior Consultant, The Hospice Foundation of America
"This book is a cornucopia of rigorous scholarship and practical clinical guidance on bereavement and grief after suicide. The authors’ incisive writing styles are engaging and their chapters unfold as a coherent narrative of the complex aftermath of suicide. This comprehensive text will stimulate the theoretician, enlighten the empirical researcher, and enliven the clinician." - Ted Rynearson, MD, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, University of Washington; Medical Director, Virginia Mason Separation & Loss Service, Seattle, Washington
"This much needed volume is a ‘tour de force’ in suicide bereavement! The editors have assembled world experts whose review of the published literature is encyclopedic in breadth yet manageable and illuminating for the reader. Their up-to-date descriptions of established US and international support programs are invaluable as are their incisive directives for future research and individual and programmatic resources for survivors." - Michael F Myers, MD, Professor of Clinical Psychiatry, SUNY Downstate Medical Center; Co-Author (with Carla Fine), Touched By Suicide: Hope and Healing After Loss
"The publication of this comprehensive book is a recognition that the long-neglected field of bereavement after suicide has reached a level of sophisticated evidence, experience and expertise. The book successfully assembles and draws together the various themes and threads relating to the nature and course of grief after suicide, and the array of options for providing support to those bereaved by suicide." - Annette Beautrais PhD, Senior Research Scientist, Yale University School of Medicine; Professor, University of Otago, Christchurch, New Zealand
"People undoubtedly have been taking their lives since the dawn of mankind, yet our understanding of the trauma suicide has on those intimately and directly affected has received scant scholarly attention and, at that, only in the last half century. This book represents a sea change in that history. Jordan and McIntosh bring years of compassion and scholarship to the topic and offer us both fresh perspective and a challenge to move toward a more meaningful clinical and research understanding of this long-neglected experience. This is a pioneering effort and a most significant piece of scholarship." - Lanny Berman, PhD, ABPP, Executive Director, American Association of Suicidology
"...a MUST book to read and keep in your professional library...this book is a rich bearer of resource information that will serve you well... It is academic, clinical, resourceful and personal...Nothing would distract me from recommending this book. I believe it will set a new standard for understanding, comfort, and restoration...The book is excellent, a must for your library, and it does a superb job of advocating for the mourner." - Richard B. Gilbert, Ph.d., in Illness, Crisis & Loss
"[The authors] intertwine research and practice in ways that would be genuinely helpful to researchers as well as clinicians....the writing is strong and compelling....a wonderful resource....clear organization enhances the appeal.... As a reviewer, would I recommend this book to researchers? Would I recommend it to professionals working with individuals bereaved from suicide? Am I glad I read it myself? The answer to all these questions is a resounding yes." - Lillian Range, PsycCRITIQUES