In this guest article, our partners at Sue Ryder outline the range of online help they have available for anyone who is facing or dealing with the loss of a loved one. 

If someone you love is dying or has died, the support you need can feel just out of reach. So, it’s comforting to know that help is never far away. 

Sue Ryder’s Online Bereavement Support makes it easy to connect with the right support for you, whether that’s reliable information and resources, access to qualified counsellors or a community of others with similar experiences. All our services are free and can be accessed on any smartphone, tablet or computer.

Details about our current services are below, but we have some new developments planned for 2022, so keep an eye on our website to see the latest about the support you can access.

Join our Online Bereavement Community

We know that no one really understands what losing a loved one is like unless they’ve been through it themselves. Our online community provides peer-to-peer support, allowing people to connect with others who are going through similar experiences with their grief and bereavement.

It’s open 24/7 and is moderated by Sue Ryder to make sure it’s a supportive and safe environment.

Visit our online community

Register for online counselling

Our Online Bereavement Counselling Service provides free, confidential and professional support over video chat. The service is free and open to UK residents over the age of 18.

After an assessment to check whether our service is right for you, we offer up to six weekly sessions with one of our counsellors.

Find out more about our counselling service

Read expert information

Our website contains a wealth of accurate and easy-to-understand information and resources to help you deal with practical and emotional issues around grief and bereavement. The most popular pages in this section are:

Grief Kind

Our Grief Kind campaign is focused on how you can support someone you care about who is grieving. A special section of our website pulls together expert information, advice, podcasts and alternative sympathy cards so that you can really be there for someone who is struggling with a bereavement. Find out more at sueryder.org/GriefKind

Case study – Heather’s story

Heather turned to Sue Ryder’s online community for bereavement support following the death of her husband Pete in April 2019. She found the site particularly helpful during the isolation of the coronavirus pandemic. Then, after almost three months of lockdown, Heather’s dad, Paul, also died suddenly on June 17, 2020.

“I knew when we got married that Pete had Cystic Fibrosis and we both knew it wasn’t going to be easy but as the years went on we thought he might be lucky. We had just celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary when Pete was suddenly taken ill. He was admitted to hospital on the Wednesday and he passed away in the early hours of the Saturday morning. I was in total shock.

Nobody sits you down after you lose someone and tells you how to cope but I think after a period of time you understand that you are more alone in your grief than you would like to be.

Sometimes it can be hard to talk to your family or friends. Part of me wanted to find a local support group but I just didn’t have the confidence. I found Sue Ryder late one night when I was really upset. It was so easy to use and the biggest help of all was seeing that I wasn’t alone. People on the Online Community understand. What you read on the site reassures you that grief takes many forms and everyone has their own way of coping.

“I was just starting to find the confidence to go out with friends when lockdown started. Then on June 17, the call came to say dad had gone into cardiac arrest. Losing your dad is very different to losing your husband but it brought all those feelings back to me. I have lost two of the most influential men in my life in such a small space of time. My old life is hardly recognisable.

“I think there will be a lot of people suffering unnecessarily on their own as a result of Covid and the lockdown and not knowing where to turn. Hopefully they will find Sue Ryder even quicker than I did and start to feel not so alone in their grief.”