What is Our Suicide Bereavement Liaison Service?

The SBL Officer can meet with anyone who is impacted by, and responds to the community within 8 weeks of a death by suicide.

You may want guidance or assistance in accessing other therapeutic services, or even just to talk with someone locally about what has happened. You may have specific questions about some of the difficult practical issues following a death by suicide. In some cases, there may be a specific concern about the reactions and emotions family members, friends, colleagues or people in the wider community are experiencing.

No matter what your relationship is to the person you have lost, the service is available for you. A suicide bereavement information support pack will be available to you through your SBL Officer.

The SBL Service is available in:

AreaLiaison OfficerContact Number
Cavan / MonaghanKathryn McAree085 870 6591
Cork / KerryGeraldine Burke085 870 6714
DonegalMarie Burke085 877 2028
Galway City and CountyPauline Cahillane085 856 8082
Kildare / West Wicklow, Dublin West, Dublin South City, Dublin South WestKaroline Szafarz085 870 6606
Limerick / Clare / North TippJerard Enright085 856 8081
Meath / LouthMarian King085 738 0444
MidlandsBernie Carroll086 418 0088
North DublinKate O’Mahony085 870 6574
Sligo / LeitrimAnne Lynch085 253 8638
Wexford / Waterford / Kilkenny / Carlow / South TippKelly Higgins085 807 3040
Dublin South East /Dun Laoghaire / East WicklowDenis Sherlock085 870 6712

You can access the service by contacting your local SBLO by telephone, email, contacting our centres, or your local Resource Officer for Suicide Prevention (HSE). In addition, first responders such as members of the Gardai, Clergy, GPs or funeral directors are also actively encouraged to refer people to this service with your permission.

Some Help & Advice

What is an SBLO?

An SBLO is a Suicide Bereavement Liaison Officer. They are professionally trained Pieta House therapists that are mobile. They support families and communities in the immediate aftermath of a death by suicide. Their role is to support, sign-post and connect families with service providers when needed.

Is there a difference when someone dies by suicide?

Yes, a death by suicide is a different type of grief and can often be complicated.

The loss of a loved one by suicide can cause fear to those grieving; fear of community judgement and fear of further suicides. There are unanswered questions which lead to feelings of isolation and feeling overwhelmed.

Understand that we’re here to help you through this grief, please contact us to help.

How should I feel?

You are going through an extremely difficult time right now following a death by suicide. Be kind to yourself and those around you that are navigating life following this loss. There is no right or wrong way to grieve, grief is unique and individual.

Common reactions and emotions include:

  • Shock, denial, disbelief

  • Numbness, isolation

  • Questioning

  • Anger, blame

  • Exhaustion, sleep disturbances, lack of appetite, physical ailments

  • Fear, anxiety, depression

Who should I contact to deal with the financial matters on behalf of the deceased?

You and your family, or friends, will need to eventually look after financial obligations on behalf of the deceased. This can include:

  • Notifying banks, credit unions, post office, or companies where shares were held

  • Cancel direct debits, standing orders, subscriptions or memberships

  • Cancel insurance policies

  • Contact the Department of Social protection if the deceased was in receipt of welfare payments

  • Notify any hire or loan companies

  • Contact the tax office

  • Change the names on utility bills or mortgage accounts

How do I explain to children what happened?

Children's way of grieving can be different from adults. Approach the young person in a safe space so they feel comfortable discussing what has happened.

Ask and understand what they know has taken place. Encourage and answer questions. Explain as honestly and as clearly in an age appropriate manner.

Allow them to express their emotions as they surface.

Ensure they comprehend that regardless of previous experiences, anything they have done or said did not cause this death.

For further help and advice see Our FAQ Section. If you are in immediate danger or a medical emergency please call Emergency Services on 112 or 999 now.

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