Everyone that attends SOS support group meetings have lost someone to
suicide, be it a spouse, a child - young or older, a parent, a
co-worker, a cousin, or a friend. Everyone reacts differently when they
learn of a loss to suicide. The following is how our support groups generally flow...
The meetings start promptly at 6:30 pm. The facilitator starts the meeting by welcoming everyone and reads the Ground Rules (click to read these).
The facilitator explains that he or she is not an expert, merely someone who has walked in your shoes and understands the depth of your grief and confusion.
We then have a 'go round' where participants share a brief introduction which can include your name, the person you lost (relationship and name), when you lost them, and if you like, the method. The go round is totally optional so if you're uncomfortable sharing your information, which is sometimes the case if the loss is very recent, you can simply say 'pass.'
You may want to share your information at a later point during another SOS meeting or maybe in several months. It helps to learn what everyone's loss is so you can identify with someone with the same loss (such as losing a child).
The meeting is then open for discussion. Usually the meetings take on a life of their own but the facilitator can offer topics to talk about, such as how do you handle the holidays. Or what do you do on the anniversary date of your losing your loved one - that's a hard one.
The meeting wraps up at 7:50 pm. The facilitator will make sure has had a chance to comment or talk before closing. Then everyone holds hands while the poem "We Remember Them" is read.
We hope you can join us for a meeting. We all help each other during our hour and a half together. A strong bond forms often forms among members as we travel down the road to recovery - and a new creation of ourselves without our loved ones.