Death is never easy, but for families and friends affected by a sudden, violent death, grief is especially traumatic. Deaths caused by accidents, homicide and suicide typically seem premature, unjust, and very, very wrong. Obsessive thoughts and feelings about what the death must have been like for the deceased and what might have been done to prevent it often color the grief process. Strong feelings of anger and regret are also common.

Victim Services can help you understand and express these feelings and, over time and with the support of others, come to reconcile their loss. Victim Services can help you through all the things that need to be done after death such as making child care arrangements, notifying friends and family, talking about organ donation and locating a will. Victim Services will also discusses initial grief responses, i.e. confusion and denial, assist with funeral arrangements, and talk with you about what to expect out of children at certain ages and how to help them understand death.

Helping children understand death

Reactions to traumatic events vary depending on your child’s individual temperament, personality, and coping styles. Past stressful life events, loss, or exposure to trauma also play a significant role in his or her reaction to traumatic events.  Emotions differ across individuals and may include sadness, anger, anxiety, worry, shock, and grief.  Reactions may range from preoccupation on all details surrounding the event to avoidance of discussions and information gathering.  Adults and adolescents who have previously experienced violent or traumatic events are at increased risk for developing these symptoms and reactions.  Victim Services can provide you with information, advice and resources to help you.

Bereavement/grief

Losing someone or something you love or care deeply about is very painful. You may experience all kinds of difficult emotions and it may feel like the pain and sadness you’re experiencing will never let up. These are normal reactions to a significant loss. While there is no right or wrong way to grieve, there are healthy ways to cope with the pain that, in time, can renew you and permit you to move on

Homicide

When someone is murdered, the death is sudden, violent, final and incomprehensible. Your world is abruptly and forever changed.  A homicide creates unwanted and untimely demands on you and your family. Victim Services can assist you and your family during those first few days. You may be faced with the task of identifying the victim’s body, making funeral arrangements, handling medical bills, notifying other friends or family of the news, hosting friends or family in their home for the funeral, dealing with the media, and so on.

You may require help with funeral arrangements. Victim Services can provide support when you go to the morgue, provide information concerning their options for funeral homes, funeral services, burial services, and the like. If the victim was murdered in his or her own home, we can assist with clean-up services.

Suicide / threatened suicide

Victim Services are available to support you throughout the grief process by recognizing, acknowledging and allowing you to feel what you are feeling. We will be respectful of your needs, allowing you to be in control of the pace of the conversation and the decisions to be made. We are there to offer support and information about who else you could talk to such as resources in the community that help people who are bereaved by suicide

Links

Muskoka-Parry Sound Community Mental Health Service

We provide free mental health services to adults including crisis intervention, counseling, rehabilitation, recovery support, psychiatric treatment, partner assault housing support and a protective service program.

www.mpscmhs.on.ca

Hospice West Parry Sound

The goal of HWPS is to provide palliative care for people of the Parry Sound area.  Our community-based, non-profit organization currently provides training for volunteers in palliative care in order to provide for the Visiting Hospice Services. Bereavement support is also offered to family members as they face their loss of a loved one.

www.parrysoundhospice.ca

Near North Palliative Care Network (Nipissing/Parry Sound)

http://www.nnpcn.com/main.aspx?Page_ID=E_m1

Canadian Parents of Murdered Children

http://www.cpomc.ca/index.shtml