A suicide loss is often devastating, confusing, and traumatic for loved ones and community members. Postvention following a suicide death can include short-term and long-term support as well as individual, family, and organization/community support.
Postvention refers to the responses, resources, and interventions that provide emotional support, community networks, and culturally-appropriate support and guidance to individuals, families, and communities impacted by a suicidal crisis and/or a suicide death.
To learn more about the Office of Suicide Prevention, please return to the Office of Suicide Prevention.
For Individuals and Families
The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s (AFSP) Resources for Loss Survivors: A suicide prevention nonprofit organization that provides programs, educates, raises funds for suicide research and programs, and reaches out to those who have lost someone to suicide.
The Colorado Chapter of the AFSP: AFSP events and resources specific to Colorado.
The American Association of Suicidology (AAS): Suicide Loss Survivors Webpage: Books and resources for suicide loss survivors.
The Suicide Prevention Coalition of Colorado (SPCC): This nonprofit’s mission is to reduce suicide and its impact for all Coloradans through advocacy, collaboration, and education.
Additionally, the Suicide Prevention Coalition of Colorado provides iCare packages to grieving families at no charge.
Judi’s House: A free-standing organization in the Metro Denver area devoted solely to providing research-based care to grieving children and their families.
The Dougy Center: The National Center for Grieving Children and Families: Provides support and resources for children, teens, young adults, and their families grieving a death can share their experiences.
Uniting for Suicide Postvention (USPV): Provides resources and support for everyone touched by suicide loss.
iCare Packages: iCare packages contain resources to help support an individual or family with the loss of a loved one to suicide.
For Communities and Organizations
- The “After a Suicide: A Toolkit for Schools – 2nd Edition”: A toolkit for schools after a suicide death has occurred.
- The Higher Education Mental Health Alliance’s “Postvention: A Guide for Response to Suicide on College Campuses”: A guide for college campuses after a suicide death has occurred.
- After a Campus Suicide: A Postvention Guide for Student-Led Responses: The purpose of this guide by Active Minds is to assist students in leading a campus-wide response in alignment with their campus’s postvention plan or in place of such a plan if none exists.
- A Manager’s Guide to Suicide Postvention in the Workplace: 10 Action Steps for Dealing with the Aftermath of Suicide. This guide provides workplace leaders with clear action steps for suicide postvention, including immediate, short-term, and long-term responses to help employees.
- Community Mental Health Centers are valuable resources to support postvention at the workplace.
- The American Association of Suicidology’s Resources for Clinician Survivors: This website provides resources and information for therapists and clinicians as survivors of suicide.
- Guidelines for Response after a Completed Suicide of a Client(by Centerstone): The following guidelines have been developed to aid surviving family members, other clients, and staff in the event of a suicide death by a Centerstone client.
- Guidelines for Response: Death by Suicide of a Patient (by the Institute for Living): The following guidelines have been developed to aid surviving family members, other patients, and staff in the event of a patient’s death by suicide at the Institute of Living (IOL).
- Clinician Survivors of Suicide Loss: This video reviews information for clinicians who have experienced the suicide death of a client or patient.
- Sample Agency Practices for Responding to Client Suicide: These guidelines and recommendations outlined are intended to help identify immediate responsibilities and potential resources and sources of support following a client's suicide.
- Responding to Grief, Trauma, and Distress After a Suicide: U.S. National Guidelines: These guidelines by the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention provide a unified, far-reaching blueprint for the development of suicide postvention at all levels of U.S. society.
- How to Talk to a Suicide Loss Survivor: 10 Helpful Tips: Here are ten helpful tips to help you navigate conversations with suicide loss survivors in a kind, thoughtful, and responsible way.
- After Rural Suicide: A Guide for Coordinated Community Postvention Response: This guide by the California Mental Health Services Authority (CalMHSA) supports rural counties with developing a formal, locally-controlled, and coordinated effort in responding to the community after a suicide has occurred.
- En Español: SOS Sobrevivientes de una Suicida: Manual para enfrentar el suicidiode un ser querido.
- The National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention’s Faith Communities Task Force: This task force leads Action Alliance efforts to engage faith communities in suicide prevention.
- Supporting Survivors of Suicide Loss: A Guide for Funeral Directors: This resource by the SPRC and SPAN USA offers funeral directors guidance on how to support suicide loss survivors.
For journalists and the media:
Following the Recommendations for Reporting on Suicide can mitigate future risk of additional suicides.
- Recommendations for Reporting on Suicide: Recommendations on how to report on and cover suicide safely and responsibly.
- American Association of Suicidology’s Suicide Reporting Recommendations: This toolkit offers strategies and recommendations to ensure that reporting practices balance the demands facing journalists with public health standards regarding suicide.
- Online Postvention Manual: This booklet by the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline gives guidance on how to consider the role of the internet and to ensure that postvention initiatives also target existing online communities, which is especially important when the deceased is between the ages of 15 and 24.
NAMI Colorado offers Family Support Groups throughout Colorado for family members who are supporting loved ones with mental illness or have been impacted by suicide.
AFSP Colorado maintains a list of suicide loss survivor and grief supports groups throughout Colorado.
Colorado Crisis Services (1-844-493-8255) services the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-8255) for Colorado callers. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is made up of call centers around the country, and a website that contains additional helpful information pertinent to suicide prevention in the USA.
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