Suicide Grief Resources

“Good” Grief

If there’s one topic that I am more than qualified to write about it’s the subject of grief. At some point, I will share more about my years of experience where I should have earned an honorary PhD in grief. In fact, I don’t actually need to do a lot of research on this topic, because I have what the world would classify as “Lived Experience” and that’s what I want to focus on right now.

What I Know for Sure About Grief

After experiencing the loss of enough family members to count on 8 out of 10 fingers, there are a few things I have learned along the way. Oprah Winfrey has a podcast called “What I Know for Sure.” I guess I would say this is “What I Know for Sure About Grief.” So here goes my list and it’s my prayer that something in this list might offer hope and help to anyone who happens to stumble upon this page.

No two people grieve alike (ever).

You each had a different relationship with the person so your grief will also be different. Not more or less. Not better or worse, but just different.

Men and women grieve very differently.

In fact, if you take the natural differences between them, then grief is like a magnifying glass.

There is absolutely no timeline for grief.

It takes as long as it takes. It is definitely not linear. You can (and will) take three steps forward and four steps backward on a regular basis. Be gentle with yourself. This is normal grieving.

Avoiding your grief is like holding a ball under water.

The more you try to hold it down, the higher it will pop up when you take your hands off of it. You can’t stuff it or side step it. The only healing is to walk right through the middle of it no matter how long that takes. It’s painful, but the only way to move forward with some healing.

You never “get over” losing someone you love.

Grief doesn’t work that way. You do have to learn a new normal and with God’s grace and the support of friends and family, you can move forward but your loss has changed your life forever.

You might feel guilty...

You might feel guilty when you find yourself laughing or smiling once again after your loss. This is also totally normal. You wonder how you can smile when you have such a huge hole in your heart. That is just something you will work through and it does feel more normal with time. Eventually, you will find some joy in life again but it takes as long as it takes. Remember there is no timeline with grief.

You don’t even know what you need...

Please don’t expect to tell people what you need or what will make you feel better. You have just experienced the greatest loss of your life and you don’t even know what you need or even how to talk to friends and family which leads to #8.

Get help with your tasks so you can rest and grieve.

Someone should be appointed to speak on your behalf to organize the meals, mow the yard, shovel the snow, do the laundry, etc… Someone who can just take over the daily task list of your life so you can rest and grieve. 

Grief takes a toll on your heart, mind, body and soul.

You are not the same person you were before so don’t expect to have the same reactions. Your memory might have changed, your appetite, your hobbies, etc….Go easy on yourself and be extra gentle with YOU!

Expect people to say stupid and unkind things.

This is a hard one. We live in a society that is not comfortable with grief. People who love you and only want what’s best for you are going to have trouble with just sitting beside you and saying nothing. So, they will fill that empty space with words and sometimes those words are awkward, stupid and they hurt. We just don’t know how to do grief well. (That’s a topic for another page someday). Eventually, you will forgive them.

It’s O.K. to ask for what you need.

If you need a cheeseburger at midnight then ask someone to go to a drive-thru for you. If you need a closet cleaned out then ask someone to do that. If you need space then just ask everyone to go home. Turn off your phone and rest. Ask for what you need and don’t feel guilty about it. People who love you will understand and the ones who don’t understand…don’t matter.

Sleeping more is normal.

Your body has suffered a huge blow and you need to rest whenever you feel overwhelmed. Just stop and take a nap. It’s a gift that you’re allowed during grief.

You cannot get through the grief journey alone...

and it is a journey. It just prolongs the process. I relied on my faith, my family, and my friends to carry me. Whatever that looks like for you then make sure you know how to lean into that.

Try to connect with those who have experienced similar loss.

Try to connect with those who have experienced similar loss and are farther down the road in their grief than you are. That will give you hope that you can move forward on days when you think you never will.

Grief is the hardest work you will ever do, but...

can also be the greatest gift. Everyone grieves differently, but if you take the journey as it comes and keep talking to God even when things don’t make sense, then He will use your grief for a greater purpose. This is where the real healing begins.

Now this list might be different for everyone who reads this page. Some of you might have experienced a few already and some might have felt all of them. But there are universal truths about grief and the impact it has on the human spirit. As a woman of faith, it’s my prayer that as you’re reading this you will take out of it what you need and leave what you don’t.

I once read where “Grief is in two parts. The first is loss. The second is remaking your life.” I hope that the second will be as healing for your life as it has been for mine.

 “For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11

Grief Books

A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis

It’s OK That You’re Not OK by Megan Devine

Grief Day by Day by Jan Warner

Your Grief, Your Way by Shelby Forsythia

* There are many good ones, but these are just a few of my favorites. Sometimes it’s difficult to read when your grief is new.

Grief Podcasts

Grief Out Loud

The Mary Mac Show

Grief Works

Audible and podcasts can be a soothing way to guide and encourage you on your journey to healing your heart and soul.


Community Wide Grief Centers (Northern Indiana)

Ryan’s Place

Ryan’s place offers grief support for groups and individuals. They provide ongoing peer support for children and teens (3-18), young adults and their family members. Groups meet every other Monday evening in their Goshen location. All services are provided at no cost. You can contact them at 574-535-1000 to learn how to join their support groups or for individual support.

See the official site for complete information.

Peggy F. Murphy Community Grief Center

5920 Homestead Road
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46814

Grief support services which include individual counselors, grief and loss education programs, ongoing grief support groups, close-ended grief support groups, memorial services, retreats, and referral services. All programs are provided at no charge and are open to any adult who has suffered the loss of a loved one due to death.  You can contact them for further information about grief support at 260-435-3261.

See the official site for complete information.

We The Living

This is a peer-based support group for those that have lost loved ones to suicide that meets monthly in Fort Wayne. There are no costs to attend and all discussions are confidential. We are sponsored by Mental Health America Northeast Indiana.

Age requirement is 13+ with parent/caregiver (exceptions can be made once a parent/caregiver is a regular attendee and in direct contact with facilitator.)

All facilitators have been trained in YMHFA (Youth Mental Health First Aid), QPR (Question Persuade Refer) and other relevant trainings. We have a licensed K-12 educator on staff as well.

This group meets in person on the second Wednesday of every month from 7-9 pm at the at the

Peggy F. Murphy Community Grief Center
5910 Homestead Road
Fort Wayne, Indiana.

For more information contact Jennifer Barnes at 260-450-1702 or Brandon Craig at 260-248-4888.

See the official site for complete information.

Erin’s House for Grieving Children

5670 YMCA Park Drive West
Fort Wayne, Indiana 46835

The mission of Erin’s House is to provide support for children, teens and their families who have suffered the death of a loved one. Erin’s House offers peer support nights, school programs for grieving children, camps and retreats, summer programs and even phone support to grieving children and their families.  For more information, you can reach them at 260-423-2466.

See the official site for complete information.