The post-suicide family and the family physician

J Fam Pract. 1976 Jun;3(3):263-7.


It is estimated that there are 750,000 people each year who are intimately affected by suicide. Prominent among these are the family survivors and their family physician. This paper offers a time frame which divides the period following the suicide into three phases: Immediate (the first ten days after the suicide); Intermediate (after the first ten days through the first year); and Extended (from the first year until restitution occurs). It identifies the chief emotional reactions which occur in each phase, explores their psychodynamic origins, and proposes suggestions for appropriate management during each of the three periods. The goal of this plan of management is to enable the family physician to function in a supportive emphatic, and restorative manner for the post-suicide family.

MeSH terms

  • Depression / prevention & control
  • Family Practice
  • Family Therapy*
  • Fear
  • Grief
  • Guilt
  • Humans
  • Socioenvironmental Therapy
  • Suicide
  • Time Factors