7 Caring Ways To Help Someone Deal With Grief After The Suicide Of A Loved One

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September is National Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month. 

As difficult it is to talk about suicide, it's important to also talk about the aftermath — grief after suicide — as this is also part of raising awareness.

How do you help someone who's going through such a tragic loss

RELATED: 60 Uplifting Words Of Comfort To Offer Someone Who Is Grieving

Here are 7 ways to help someone deal with grief after the suicide of a loved one.

1. Realize that everyone grieves differently.

Grief is not a one-size-fits-all emotion. Some people are very expressive and verbal with their grief, while others are more subdued and quiet. 

Don't push someone out of their comfort zone just because you feel they may not be crying enough, and/or they don't want to talk about it. 

Ask them specifically what they need from you and reassure them that you will be there for them. 

Many people are reluctant to ask others about what they may need during this type of situation and this is a mistake. Most often, when you ask someone what they need, they will tell you. 

Once they tell you, respect what you've heard and act accordingly.

2. Don't say "I know how you feel."  

It's impossible for you to know how someone else feels. 

It would be more appropriate to say something to the effect of "I can't even imagine what you must be going through right now."

3. Don't speak negatively of the person who committed suicide. 

Saying something to the effect of "That was such a selfish thing to do" should be avoided. While some people feel this may help the person grieving, it doesn't. 

Suicide is a very complicated matter. Simply stated, any comments about a person being selfish should never enter into your conversations.  

4. Don't ask intrusive questions.  

The last thing anyone wants to be asked are questions such as "Did they leave a note?" or "Did you have any idea this was coming?" 

First off, questions like this are none of your business. If the person grieving wants to share intimate details likes this with you, they will tell you on your own and won't need your prompting. 

Also, keep in mind that very personal questions like these may also be traumatizing to those left behind in that they may feel they missed a sign somewhere.

These types of questions may also trigger them to relive the moment they found out about the suicide.

RELATED: What Grief Really Means And How To Know What's Normal Or Healthy When You're Grieving

5. Help with errands, meals, and childcare.  

One of the most effective ways to be helpful to someone after a tragic loss is to help them attend to their day-to-day life. 

Feelings of grief and loss can be extremely overwhelming after a suicide making even the simplest of tasks seem monumental to those grieving. 

Go grocery shopping for them, make some meals, offer to pick the kids up from school, and engage the kids in activities so that the person grieving has time to collect their thoughts. 

6. Help them find support resources.

Take some time to find support a support group — either a suicide loss group or a bereavement group and give them the information.   

You could say something like "I found a couple of support groups you may want to check out when you're ready." Don't be pushy about it, just leave the information with them. 

This shows that you care and are respectful of the space they may need while, at the same time, you're helping them because they have one less thing they have to take on themselves since you found the information for them.

7. When the time is right, offer to help them make a book of memories in honor of the loved one they've lost.

This isn't something you'll want to do right away, but you can mention it as an idea for when the person is ready. For example, you could say something like "You know when you're up to it, why don't we get together and put together a memory book in their honor." 

Then, when the time is right, you can help put a memory book together of pictures, artwork, poems, letters, even small clothing articles, and/or things the deceased carried in their wallet. 

There are no rules as to what can go into memory books, it's whatever is important to the person or people making them. 

Books like these can be very healing in that they help people focus on fond memories while they work through their grief and it gives them something tangible to look through when they are feeling down.

If you or somebody that you know is experiencing a mental health crisis, there is a way to get help. Call SAMHSA’s National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357) or text "HELLO" to 741741 to be connected with the Crisis Text Line. You can also call The National Suicide Prevention Hotline 1-800-273-8255. It's open 24/7.

RELATED: 4 Reasons Memorials For Our Lost Loved Ones Support Healthy Grieving

Christina Steinorth-Powell is a Licensed Psychotherapist and the author of the new book "Cue Cards for Men: A Man's Guide to Love" and "Cue Cards for Life: Thoughtful Tips for Better Relationships." You can order her books on Amazon.