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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Where can i gain support after loosing someone to suicide?

    We recently lost our brother to suicide and i really believe my parents and i would benefit from some kind of support where we can connect with others who've been there. Where can we find this support?
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    Agree

    Dr Toni Metelerkamp

    Clinical Psychologist, Psychologist

    Toni works with adults and couples, and specialises in diagnosing and treating anxiety (panic disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder), phobias, substance and gambling, addictions, suicide and … View Profile

    Talking to others who have had similar experiences can be helpful. This is especially the case in suicide, where people who have not been directly affected by suicide are often unsure of what to say, and how best to say it. 

    Depending on what would suit you, you have the option of online support or face-to-face support. Web-based organisations can provide support to several people at once, which might work for you and your parents. It can also be accessed whenever you need it and at relatively little cost. There are a few different options for online support that is suicide specific. These include:
    ·       The Suicide Call Back Service (1300 659 467) - a national, 24hour, 7day a week free telephone counseling service for people impacted by suicide. They can also be found on the web at: http://www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au/
     
    ·       The Alliance of Hope for Suicide Survivors provides support for people after losing someone to suicide  - This is a Canadian based organisation but has an online support forum at http://www.allianceofhope.org/alliance-of-hope-for-suic/community-forum.html
     
     
    ·       Support After Suicide is a Jesuit Social Services program funded by the Department of Health and Aging under the National Suicide Prevention Strategy. Support After Suicide provides resources for children, young people and adults following the suicide of someone close to them. They are on the web at: http://www.supportaftersuicide.org.au/
     
    There is also the Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement which is based in Victoria but their website has some useful information on grief. They can be found at:  http://www.grief.org.au/
    You also have the option of face-to-face support. If that’s what you prefer, you can see a psychologist either privately or through a Medicare referral. For a Medicare referral you will need to make a double appointment to see your GP and request a referral to a psychologist. The Australian Psychological Society has a Find A Psychologist service (http://www.psychology.org.au/Members/ReferralService.aspx) which helps identify registered psychologists in your area who specifically list grief and loss as an area of expertise.
    Importantly, your grieving process is unique to you and will need to be navigated in ways that are meaningful for you rather than trying to fit with someone else’s version of how grief “should” be. I wish you well. 

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