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  • September 6, 2016
  • David Marks
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Bereavement Essay Help


Bereavement is the period of grief or mourning after death in which any person who has experienced death of a near and dear ones. Period of bereavement is very important for an individual because during this period he comes to terms with the loss and also this period enables him as an individual to cope up with the loss and develop proper views about the loss. There are different causes of death of a person like natural death, death due to a disease, accidental death, death due to natural calamities or fatal injuries and suicides etc. out of different causes of death, death of a person due to accidental injuries, fatal conflicts and suicide give the most grief because of unexpected nature of death and sudden loss (Frewen and Lanius, 2006).


Suicide is one of the most difficult grief which a family has to deal with when one of the family members conducts such an act. Suicide is a double blow for the family because not only they have to deal with the manner in which a person took away his life (jumping off heights, drowning, bullets etc) but also it forces a family into a cycle of guilt because they assume some where they are to blame for not helping the member who died or not being able to understand the signs of depression and death desire.

One thing which needs to be cleared at this moment only that the bereavement which occurs by suicide is very different from other bereavement and there are various additional pressure which person going through grief has to go through. A personal usually go through shock, deep sadness, occasional anger, guilt, shame and self blame etc which are extra emotional pressures. While dealing with these pressures person bereaving often flood their thoughts with “what if” and “if only” questions which can never be answered. It is also observed that families going through bereavement of suicide also feel that they are being isolated socially and in many societies there is a social stigma attached with suicide and they start questioning the family and its means. Thus it becomes very difficult for the family to not just go through the internal grief but at the same time they have to deal with external pressure and judgmental attitude (Neimeyer, 2000).

In case of suicide of a young individual, telling his siblings and making them come to terms of life is a very difficult thing to do for parents. There are many complicated feelings and thoughts which children go through with such an experience and these feelings derange their normal life activity. While discussing such incident it is also asked to the families that they do not use the phrase “committed suicide” because it is not longer a legal crime and it should be discussed like “ended their life” or “took their own life”. This way the legal stigma can be removed from suicide easing out pressure on bereaving family. There are different bereavement therapies which can be used to help grieving families.

Aim of bereavement therapy is to ensure that people who are going through the suicide bereavement should be brought back to the normal course of life as early as possible and provide them with coping mechanism to deal with the period of grief and develop a sense of coming to the terms with the loss.

Grief counseling or bereavement therapy is a kind of psychotherapy which according to the people who went through bereavement therapy is a very good and unique way to develop a strong mindset towards the loss which already happened, how to break information to the loved ones, how to consol them and also ensure that the psychological damage which occurs to the members can be reversed to a large extent.

Bereavement is a very personal attribute and ever one bereaves in a different manner, some cry, some stays quite, some laughs and some gets angry after a loss.  It also varies from culture to culture and family to family, how they bereave and how they react on the loss. A bereavement therapist would be fully aware of different form of grief expression and how to deal with them (Larson & Hoyt, 2007).

DSM V criteria have been used for assessment of psychological impact of grief and they also defined the complicated or traumatic grief which is experienced in a suicide. If proper grief management is not done in case of suicide bereavement it might be possible that it can lead a person towards long term problem called Prolonged grief disorder (PGD). It is a rare occurrence but in case of suicide bereavement it has a very high occurrence rate of 10 percent of total cases and it indicates that aim of bereavement therapy should be for not just short term grief counseling but also to make sure grief is alleviated for the long term (Murray, 2000).


David Marks

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