Date of Conferral
This study sought to explore the lived experience of the bereaved-by-suicide and to provide a detailed description of their experience with the loss of a loved one. The study participants were 12 bereaved-by-suicide individuals between the ages of 21 and 65 who had experienced the loss of a loved one by suicide two or more years before the interviews. The research question was made up of three parts, "How do the bereaved-by-suicide describe their grief in personal, practical, and existential terms?" The theoretical framework for the study was derived from Neimeyer's meaning reconstruction theory. Data were collected via individual interview and coded according to the themes acquired from the study participants. The primary themes of grief that emerged from their narratives included the following: (a) the initial shock, (b) episodes of anger, (c) feeling a sense of loss, (d) living in a world of grief, (e) inability to trust and the resulting isolation, (f) thoughts on life after death, (g) preparing to say good-bye, and (h) building stronger relationships. The research confirmed the overwhelming effect of suicide on those bereaved; their daily lives were disrupted, and there was a higher risk of mental instability even two or more years after the suicide. The broader implications of these findings pertain to developing strategies to increase social awareness about the grief experienced by the bereaved-by-suicide, despite the person's efforts to appear strong and hide their grief and fears. The results of this study may add to the current research and can contribute to bringing about social change in development of prevention programs, enhancements in bereavement training, support group development, and in how the bereaved-by-suicide are viewed.
Kinsey, Vincent, "The Lived Experiences of Those bereaved By Suicide" (2019). Walden Dissertations and Doctoral Studies. 7547.