Losing a loved one to suicide is an extremely difficult experience for anybody, and can often leave people at a loss when taking the next steps. This is especially true when it comes to the practical tasks that must be handled to process both the grief of the situation and the arrangement of the affairs following someone’s passing.
Although there are plenty of educational resources out there, having hands-on experience with trained professionals who are there to help can be extremely relieving.
Even though it’s impossible to completely alleviate the experience of grief, it’s absolutely possible to support those who are experiencing it, especially with a specific understanding of their situation. That’s why a new charitable partnership should prove extremely valuable for those that it stands to serve.
Two mental health charities — Support in Mind Scotland in Highland and Argyll and Bute, and Penumbra in Ayrshire and Arran — have partnered up to support individuals through their experience of losing a loved one to suicide.
This partnership allows for expertly trained staff to assist the families that have been impacted by the loss of a loved one with practical tasks such as arranging funerals, talking to the procurator fiscal, and even taking care of mental health concerns. Mental health, whether or not it concerns suicidal behavior, can be an extremely personal experience, and it requires nuance and care. The partnership between Support in Mind and Penumbra is prepared to provide that for those who need it.
Although this partnership used to require referrals through the Police of Scotland, they now take referrals from a variety of sources, including mental health teams, general practitioners, the Scottish ambulance service, and the wider community. This shift has made their services accessible to a larger population, allowing them to serve the community more effectively.
Having a service available to work with bereaved families can also work to prevent suicide by bringing attention to the issue and starting a conversation. Coming together as a community is an important way to keep the conversation going about suicide and help those who have experienced a great loss.
On this partnership, Police Superintendent Lindsay Tulloch has said, “One life lost to suicide is one too many, but knowing that this service is available to support and guide bereaved families is a huge relief to our officers who are attending and dealing with these tragedies.” And this is certainly a sentiment that the community can easily get on board with.
Making Space for Support and Healing
This partnership can offer so much to those who have lost loved ones to suicide. In addition, it can also keep the conversation around mental health going strong so that people are more likely to address mental health and suicidal ideation if they spot it in their own lives. Even helping one person makes an impact on the world.