Suicide Bereavement: A Primer to Understanding the Survivor’s Journey

Dates: March 10 – April 4, 2014
Instructor: Franklin Cook


Course Description

This course provides an introduction to the nature and dynamics of grief after a suicide and covers the basic principles of helping the suicide bereaved. It compares and contrasts suicide bereavement with other types of traumatic loss and with grief in general after any manner of death. The course covers the needs of survivors of suicide loss immediately after a fatality as well as how to help people deal with the impact of a suicide throughout the course of their grief. It also includes an introduction to key resources for the suicide bereaved.

Learning Objectives

After completion of the course, the student will be able to:

  • Describe the prevalence and general impact of suicide bereavement.
  • Explain the commonalities and differences between grief after suicide and grief in general.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the needs of survivors of suicide loss immediately after a fatality and give examples of how to meet those needs.
  • Outline the basic principles and effective approaches for helping survivors cope with their grief.
  • Identify helpful resources for people bereaved by suicide.

 About Your Instructor

Franklin Cook, M.A., specializes in training and advocacy for peer-based suicide grief support and in planning, development and leadership of community-based suicide grief support programs. He is also the creator of Personal Grief Coaching, a telephone support service he administers to help bereaved people. He began his career in suicide grief support as a volunteer in 1999 and now consults, trains and presents on suicide bereavement for organizations such as the American Association of Suicidology, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Tragedy Assistance Program for Survivors (TAPS), National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention and National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Franklin publishes the “Grief after Suicide” blog. He holds a master’s degree in English Literature. A more complete bio can be found here. Franklin is the owner of Unified Community Solutions.