When you first discover that someone close to you has died unexpectedly by suicide or other sudden, traumatic death, you will probably experience a range of emotions and physical sensations. Sometimes it is clear that a relative or friend’s death is suicide, but often it is not. Uncertainty may arise from the death being completely unexpected or because of the way in which the person died, for example by drowning or drug overdose.
This guide is aimed at the wide range of people who are affected by suicide or other sudden, traumatic death. It aims firstly to help people who are unexpectedly bereaved in this way. It also provides information for healthcare and other professionals who come into contact with bereaved people, to assist them in providing help and to suggest how they themselves may find support if they need it.