Clinical and psychological consequences for the families of suicide victim



A lot of attention is paid to people in suicidal crisis, while the problems of helping the relatives of the suicide victim are studied less extensively. To offer expert support to the family it is necessary to understand the aims of psychological work. The article presents analysis of protective factors and risk factors that may affect the intensity of the emotional state after the loss. Characteristics of children’s experience of relative’s suicide are described. In contrast to the experience of natural death, relatives of a suicide experience more feelings of guilt and social stigmatization that prevents them from getting informal support. Relatives of a suicide are at risk of developing depression, symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder, physical illness, drug addiction and suicidal behavior. Literature data shows the need to develop a program of prevention that should be based on the relationship between the survivor and the person who committed suicide, to consider the stage of grief and coping skills he/she possesses.

General Information

Keywords: suicide, family of suicide victims, grief, prevention

Journal rubric: Research Reviews

Article type: scientific article


For citation: Borisonik E.V., Lyubov E.B. Clinical and psychological consequences for the families of suicide victim. Konsul'tativnaya psikhologiya i psikhoterapiya = Counseling Psychology and Psychotherapy, 2016. Vol. 24, no. 3, pp. 25–41. DOI: 10.17759/cpp.2016240303. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Evgeniya V. Borisonik, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Counseling and Clinical Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education (MSUPE), Medical Psychologist, Sklifosovsky Research Institute of Emergency Care, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Evgenii B. Lyubov, Doctor of Medicine, Professor, Head of Suicidology Department, Moscow Research Institute of Psychiatry — Branch of The Serbsky Federal Medical Research Center for Psychiatry and Narcology, Moscow, Russia, e-mail:



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