Logo: Suicide Prevention and Crisis Service
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Post-Trauma Resources

 

Help After Suicide

We can help those who have survived the suicide of someone close to them-- call us at (607) 272-1505

Surviving the suicide of someone close is one of the most traumatic experiences a person will ever endure. It changes your life forever, but with help, you can slowly regain your quality of life.

We meet with individuals, families, friends, colleagues, witnesses and others who are impacted by suicide.

We help schools, businesses and other organizations provide support and maintain safety for their members after a suicide.

We not only meet with people immediately after a suicide, but also during hard times such as birthdays and death anniversaries, even years after the suicide.

People who have experienced the suicide of a loved one call themselves “suicide survivors.” We help you as a survivor to understand suicide and its impact, and to learn practical means of caring for yourself and the others involved, such as children. In addition to meeting with after trauma staff, we have many written resources to offer.

After meeting with you to address the specific issues of your suicide situation, we then invite you to join the After Suicide Support Group.

For help after suicide, contact the Director of Trauma Services at (607) 272-1505.

Some Common Experiences of Suicide Survivors

  • Questioning why it happened, what could have been done (or not done) to prevent it, what might have helped change whatever was unbearable for him or her
  •  Racing thoughts and images of the deceased and the suicide event
  • Feeling a roller coaster of emotions and thoughts, such as shock, anger, shame, guilt, despair, loneliness, depression, abandonment, grief, confusion, and disorientation
  • Losing trust, being afraid that others will die, hypervigilance
  • Experiencing physical discomfort such as chills, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, body and head aches
  • Experiencing difficulty with sleeping, nightmares, eating and performing day-to-day activities
  • Feeling stigmatized by others or inside yourself which makes suicide seem unspeakable

 

After Suicide Support Group 
Monthly, first & third Tuesdays, 5:30 pm

SPCS Conference Room, 124 E. Court Street,  Ithaca  ,  NY

The After Suicide Support Group of Suicide Prevention & Crisis Service has been helping survivors find their way since 1982. Group members, being suicide survivors, understand the special needs of those who have suffered a loved one’s suicide, whether the suicide was recent or long ago. They come together with others who can truly listen and comprehend, having themselves suffered a loss from suicide.

 

To attend, call the Director of After-Trauma Services at 607-272-1505.

 

Help After Suicide Attempt

What if you or someone in your family has attempted suicide?

  1. Be sure the individual follows doctor's orders, particularly regarding medication, therapy, and follow-up visits.
  2. Click on the following link for more information.
     

 

Help with a Traumatic Experience or Crisis

We help when you experience homicide, accident, DWI, fire, disaster, sudden medical death, assault, a life-threatening event, and other traumatic incidents. Services for the impact of suicide are described under “Help After Suicide.”

We can help -- call us at (607) 272-1505

We provide  After Trauma Counseling for individuals, families, schools, businesses and groups affected by a traumatic experience

Support Groups for people who have experienced the sudden death of another by homicide, accident or other means

Trauma Education on what is helpful in dealing with the impact of crisis, trauma and loss

Consultation with schools, businesses, groups and individuals on how to provide support and maintain safety after a trauma

Training crisis team members to develop a crisis plan and to provide after trauma services using “best practices” methods

A library of books, journals, articles and information sheets on trauma, suicide, crisis, loss, and other relevant topics

There is no fee for counseling, consultation or support groups. Training and education programs are provided on a sliding fee scale

If you or someone you know has experienced a traumatic situation, call the Director of Trauma Services at (607) 272-1505 for after trauma help.

Some Common Experiences of Trauma Survivors

  • Questioning why did it happen, what could have been done to prevent it, will it happen again
  • Racing thoughts and images of the situation and those involved before, during, and after

  • Feeling a roller coaster of emotions and thoughts such as shock, anger, fear, anxiety, moodiness, irritability, guilt, shame, loneliness, depression, alienation, grief, confusion, and disorientation

  • Losing trust, being afraid others will die or be threatened, hyper vigilance

  • Experiencing physical discomfort such as chills, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, body and head aches

 Frequently Asked Questions

Q: You do suicide prevention so isn’t it too late to help after someone has already died by suicide?
A:
Our experience is that any death is difficult; a sudden death is that much more difficult to heal from, and a death by suicide has additional challenges for recovery. When someone commits suicide, those who are left behind have many physical, emotional, cognitive and spiritual responses that are hard to cope with. Our After Trauma Services and after suicide support group share what we have learned in an effort to ease the trauma of suicide for family, friends and associates.

Q: How does that work?
A:
When a person dies by suicide, survivors are left wondering why did it happen and what could have been done. Survivors often feel alone with their pain after a suicide. They may feel anger, shame, guilt and despair which is hard to share with others. If the deceased has been struggling for a long time, they may feel relief mixed with these other emotions. Unless survivors are able to talk with someone who understands and knows how to help, this burden may be carried for the rest of their lives.

Q: What if there is a suicide attempt? Can you be of help?
A: A suicide attempt leaves many people emotionally shaken and out of balance. We can help those who are involved in the life of the person who attempted suicide to understand and process their responses to the attempt and regain some equilibrium. We can also help them to communicate comfortably with the person who attempted suicide.

Q: What if there is a death by some means other than suicide? How can you help?
A: Sudden or violent death by any means is traumatic. Our After Trauma Services provide practical help in dealing with homicide, DWI, accidents, sudden medical deaths, etc. as well as suicide.

Q: What if there is an event that is not involving death? How can you help?
A:
Sudden and unexpected events that are life-threatening or make us feel endangered such as a fire, burglary, assault or accident can cause us to feel fragile and as if the underpinnings of our lives have been pulled out from under us. Our After Trauma Services provide practical help in dealing with traumatic events that do not involve death as well as those that do.

Q: How do I arrange for after-trauma help and how much does it cost?
A: We try to be as flexible as possible in arranging help--we simply put our calendars together with yours to determine a workable meeting time. Since our work is supported by public funds, there is no fee for our After Trauma Services in Tompkins County. We can meet with individuals, families, friends or colleagues, provide helpful written resources for all ages, and offer telephone counseling any time, day or night.