According to the Centers for Disease Control, the leading cause of injury death in 2012 was drug overdose. And the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence reports that there are 2.5 million alcohol-related deaths worldwide each year.
These deaths leave behind many grieving loved ones, who may not have the resources they need to deal with the death. Following is a resource guide with advice and information for those who’ve lost a loved one to drug or alcohol addiction.
Address feelings of guilt and shame. This two-part article on grieving after an overdose addresses how those who’ve lost a loved one to addiction often feel guilt and shame because they think they should have been able to prevent the death. Part Two of the article offers resources, linked below, to help grieving loved ones begin to deal with these feelings
Look for a support group in your area. As this article notes, GRASP (Grief Recovery After a Substance Passing), a group created by loved ones who’ve lost someone to addiction, has support groups throughout the country. Their meeting locations can be found here. This article offers a look at the benefits of grief support groups.