Grief Associated with Suicide – Warning Signs and Getting Help Safe Schools Hotline 858.668.4161
When there is a loss of a student or staff member at a school the school community grieves this tragic loss. To assist the students and staff in handling this loss, a special crisis intervention team comes to the school. An increased level of individual and group counseling services has been made available.
Please be aware that a child may experience strong feelings in response to death, including sorrow, depression, anger, fear, or even guilt. He or she may have difficulty sleeping and/or experience nightmares or may temporarily regress in his or her behavior or academically. The child will likely have a special need at this time for your comfort and support; please try to be available to listen with patience and understanding.
If the death is suicide-related, it is important to be aware of the warning signs of suicide and that there is potential for suicide contagion. Warning signs may include:
• Persistent sad or “empty” mood
• Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness or guilt
• Loss of interest in usual activities or isolation
• Excessive alcohol and/or drug use
• Disturbances in eating and sleeping patterns
• Irritability, anxiety or feeling “out of control”
• Recurrent thoughts or talk of death or suicide
Please seek help immediately if your child expresses any suicidal ideation or exhibits any suicide warning signs. The San Diego County Access and Crisis Line: 1-800-479-3339.
Yellow Ribbon Suicide Prevention Program www.yellowribbonsd.org