The death of a child is always shattering, but suicide is a particularly cruel form of death for the surviving family and friends. We are often left with the seemingly unanswerable question, Why?
Our minds may regularly go over and over what we could have done to prevent this tragedy. We may feel a strong sense of guilt. What was wrong with our parenting that led to this despair? How have we failed our children in their upbringing? They were our loved children.
For us families of children who have died from suicide, we might have the additional stress of coping with the police, postmortem, inquest, media and reactions of others.
We sometimes have to listen to thoughtless comments, however well meaning, such as how selfish are those who take their own lives.
At this time we are running this event as a facilitated online group using Zoom .
Unfortunately due to the nature of online groups we will be limiting the number of attendees and booking is via our website. We will confirm your attendance by email. Please note that we will be giving priority to those who have not attended an online group before.
If this event is fully booked we are hoping to run further groups at a later date to give more parents the opportunity to attend.
Please note that these online events are run by bereaved parent volunteers. Our volunteers are not professionals and so what we offer is a uniquely warm, comforting and supportive online group organised and facilitated by parents who have also experienced the loss of a child and have found understanding and hope themselves through The Compassionate Friends.
If you are newly bereaved:
Please note, our online support group meetings may not be the most appropriate form of support for very newly bereaved parents. We know how vulnerable we can be in the early weeks and months of our grief and how raw the pain and heartache can feel.
In an online support environment, we will of course do all we can to express our empathy to newly bereaved parents verbally but we won’t be able to offer the very important physical presence and contact that physical groups can offer especially when parents become very upset. Our online meetings tend to be shorter than physical meetings which also means that we won’t have as much time to hear from all group members in the ways in which we would do if we were meeting face to face.
We know that in the early days of our grief, there is a strong need to tell our ‘story’ about the loss of our precious child. We know that this is a very important part of grieving – however, our support groups, whether online or face to face can only offer the opportunity to say a little about your loss and in not too much detail so as to enable everyone to have a chance to speak and also to minimise the risk of anyone attending being re-traumatised around their own loss by hearing graphic details of someone else’s loss. It would help to know how early you are in your loss and whether you are already receiving TCF support – what we don’t wish to do is increase the vulnerability of any bereaved parent by not managing your expectations about what our support group offers and is unable to offer. We may make contact if we need to explore with you whether our online group support is the most appropriate way to support you at this stage in your loss.
Each year thousands of parents suffer the loss of a son or a daughter. Please help us to support families in their time of greatest need.