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Proactive outreach

Before contacting bereaved people, critically consider the circumstances of the suicide, the relationship between the deceased and the people you are contacting, the cultural values of those people, and their familiarity with you.47

Options to reach out to the bereaved people include:

  • writing a condolence card
  • calling the family/offering to meet with the family
  • attending the funeral
  • speaking at the funeral.47

You may also consider holding a community meeting.

Remember, to be helpful to the bereaved, you need to acknowledge and manage your own grief.47


  1. McGann V, Gutin N, Jordan J. Guidelines for postvention care with survivor families after the suicide of a client. In: Jordan J, McIntosh J, editors. Grief after suicide: Understanding the consequences and caring for the survivor. New York: Routledge, 2011.


After suicide: A resource for GPs