By John H. Hewett
"For the person within the throes of responding to the....suicide of a family member, this publication offers useful perception into the event. this type of cognitive wisdom can truly alleviate affliction through being a competent advisor during the process".---The Theological Educator.
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However, the time is right to begin your crucial process of "postvention''that process after a suicide during which your family works toward emotional recovery and readjustment to healthy living. The suicidal death of your family member forces you to ask different questions, express unusual emotions, and face difficult fears. That's why "postvention" is for you. Edwin Shneidman, foremost American expert on suicide and developer of the term "postvention," describes the burden that a suicide places upon the surviving family.
You don't give a suicidal person lethal ideas by talking about the subject. Rather, you provide an opportunity for ventilation of those feelings by getting them out into the open. If I suspect that a person is thinking of suicide, I ask him about it right then. If he admits to having suicidal thoughts, I try to get him to agree to avoid such action. This may or may not prevent suicide, but it opens the issue and secures my concern. Remember, the "ideas" cannot be confronted once the suicide has already happened.
These different grief phases or stages do not occur automatically. Not every person will move directly from one to another. Your own phases of grief may not all occur in this order. However, almost everyone will experience these particular emotions sometime during suicide grief. The phases overlap, and will Page 34 even recur at later times. Take a good look at them now, and begin to get ready to face them. Shock By the time you begin reading this book, you are probably through with shock, the first stage of acute grief.
After Suicide (Christian Care Books) by John H. Hewett