Background: While the research literature exploring suicide bereavement has expanded in recent years, this has been primarily quantitative and has focused more on the bereavement experience of parents and siblings. The bereavement experience of young people affected through the suicide death of a friend remains under-conceptualized and not well understood. Aims: To develop an understanding of the experiences of young people bereaved by the suicide of a friend. Method: Ten young people participated in a pilot study with in-depth interviews to explore their suicide bereavement experiences. Narrative inquiry methodology was utilized to analyze the qualitative data. Results: The findings indicated multiple grief experiences caused by suicide. Four themes reported are meaning making, feeling guilt, risky coping behavior, and relating to friends following suicide loss. Conclusions: Implications include the need for increased awareness that friends of young people who die by suicide may have significant health and well-being challenges associated with bereavement, and that friends in these circumstances may not readily present at services for assistance.
Bartik, W., Maple, M., Edwards, H., & Kiernan, M. (2013). Adolescent survivors after suicide: Australian young people's bereavement narratives. Crisis, 34(3), 211-217. https://doi.org/10.1027/0227-5910/a000185