Books for Loss Survivors
A Note About Terminology:
Loss Survivors are also called Survivors of Suicide–a confusing term used to depict those left behind after the suicide of a loved one. Using Loss Survivors as a term clarifies the confusion between the semantics of Survivors of Suicide–who are loss survivors–and Suicide Survivors (those who have attempted suicide and lived). Both terms, Loss Survivors and Survivors of Suicide, are used throughout the book list. Know that they mean the same.
Where to Begin
The “WHY?” of a suicide death can haunt loss survivors. Sometimes for a long time. Sometimes forever. Sometimes until, exhausted by all other means, we realize that all questions of “WHY?” lend themselves to circular reasoning–that there is, in fact, no logic and reason behind a suicide death.
Suicide resides outside the realm of logic, though in having been left with the devastating pain of losing my son to suicide, I continue to search for the “WHY?” behind what seems his senseless death.
I’ve sought solace reading books about suicide and books about what it’s like to be a loss survivor. I’ve read books about losing a child to suicide and books about how to live through–and process–the difficult grief after a suicide. I’ve read many of the books below, and I’ve read many of the books found on the “Books on Suicide” post.
Books for Loss Survivors
After Suicide Loss: Coping with Your Grief Jack Jordan, Ph.D., and Bob Baugher, Ph.D., Caring People Press, 2016 (2nd edition).
Aftermath: Picking Up the Pieces after a Suicide Gary Roe, 2019.
The Gift of Second: Healing from the Impact of Suicide
Brandy Lidbeck, Gift Pub, 2016.
Healing after the Suicide of a Loved One
Ann Smolin and John Guinan, Simon and Schuster, 1993.
My Son . . . My Son . . .: A Guide to Healing After Death, Loss, or Suicide Iris Bolton and Curtis Mitchell, 1983.
Myths about Suicide Thomas Joiner 2011.
Rocky Roads: The Journeys of Families through Suicide Grief
Michelle Linn-Gust, Ph.D., Chellehead Works, 2010.
Silent Grief: Living in the Wake of Suicide
Christopher Lukas and Henry M. Seiden, Ph.D., Jessica Kingsley Publishers, 2007 (revised edition).
Suicide of a Child
Adina Wrobleski, Centering Corp., 2002.
Suicide Survivors’ Handbook
Trudy Carlson, Benline Press, 2000 (expanded edition).
Survivors of Suicide
Rita Robinson and Phyllis Hart, New Page Books, 2001.
Suicide Survivors: A Guide for Those Left Behind Adina Wrobleski, 2002.
Touched by Suicide: Hope and Healing after Loss
Michael F. Myers, M.D., and Carla Fine, Gotham Books, 2006.
Unfinished Conversation: Healing from Suicide and Loss — A Guided Journey
Robert E. Lesoine and Marilynne Chopel, Parallax Press, 2013.
Voices of Healing and Hope: Conversations on Grief after Suicide
Iris Bolton, Bolton Press Atlanta, 2017.Includes DVD of interviews.
Why People Die by Suicide Thomas Joiner, 2007.
Why Suicide? Questions and Answers about Suicide, Suicide Prevention, and Coping with the Suicide of Someone You Know
Eric Marcus, Harper One, 2010 (revised edition).
The Wilderness of Suicide Grief: Finding Your Way
Alan D. Wolfelt, Ph.D. Companion Press, 2010.