Every type of grief has the potential to cause intense and complex feelings, but research shows that people bereaved by suicide can have a particularly complex set of feelings and can experience additional struggles and dilemmas in trying to resolve their grief.
It took me a good few years to work through my feelings about the death... (but) in coming out of the depression I finally began to truly be myself and stop feeling so isolated and detached.
Feelings you might experience when you lose someone to suicide include intense sadness, shock, anger, frustration, confusion and isolation. Some people also talk about experiencing a sense of shame or guilt, and while this is a very common reaction it is important to remember that people who take their own lives are often trying to stop feelings of distress that can feel as intense and real as physical pain - the reasons for suicide are complex and you are not to blame.
For more information see our pages on suicidal feelings.
Who is affected by a suicide?
Suicide can have a ripple effect, extending well beyond the person's immediate family and friends. How you are affected will depend on your relationship to the person who has died, the strength of the attachment and the circumstances around the death.
While losing someone close to you to suicide can be an extremely painful and emotionally complex experience, you may find that you are also affected if someone you know less well has taken their life.
If you feel affected by a suicide there are organisations that can help. Talking through difficult emotions and talking about the person who died can be helpful in processing the loss.
People seem to expect you to move on. I think that patience and support without a deadline is the best thing you can give to someone suffering from bereavement.