Personal growth after a suicide loss: cross-sectional findings suggest growth after loss may be associated with better mental health among survivors

Omega (Westport). 2009;59(3):181-202. doi: 10.2190/OM.59.3.a.


With a diverse sample of 462 parent survivors of their child's suicide we explored the association of the personal growth subscale of the Hogan Grief Reaction Checklist (HGRC) with mental health problems among longer-term survivors. In this article we offer additional validation for this scale's association with longer-term survivorship and reduced grief difficulties. We also demonstrate its negative relationship with mental health problems. In addition, we explore the demographic correlates of personal growth, which are likely to enable some survivors to experience personal growth sooner than others. Overall, the findings suggest that personal growth represents an important part in the process of healing after suicide loss.

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Psychological
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Attitude to Health
  • Child
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Grief*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health / statistics & numerical data*
  • Middle Aged
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Social Support*
  • Suicide / psychology
  • Suicide / statistics & numerical data*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Survivors / psychology*