“You should be glad he’s dead”: Stigma, grieving and drug deaths
Sep 1, 2023
The UK-based “Talking Drugs” website has recently published an article titled “‘You should be glad he’s dead’: Stigma, grieving and drug deaths”. The article describes the impacts of bereavement for those left behind after a drug related death. Research has found that people grieving drug related deaths commonly experienced negative comments – including from close family and friends – leading to the development of guilt and shame in those left behind. The article describes some of the macabre media reporting of drug related deaths, and the impact that this type of media reporting can have. The article includes suggestions for improving our responses which includes not only impoved training for health and human service workers, but also addressing the structural factors that contribute to the stigma in the first place.