John Whitebrook

John WhitebrookInstitution: University of West London, England.

Supervisory team: Principal Supervisor: Caroline Lafarge, Professor of Psychology; 2nd Supervisor, Jamie Churchyard, Senior Lecturer in Psychology; 3rd Supervisor: Sharon Cahill, Ph.D. Supervisor.

Position: PhD student.

Current research: I am interested in understanding how people deal with losing loved ones to suicide. My PhD research is looking at the factors influencing suicide postvention uptake and efficacy in UK adult male survivors, plus changes in policy and approach that could facilitate improved outcomes.

Research interests: Research is required that goes beyond traditional contributors and embraces hitherto under-represented constituencies. It also should look to address evolving factors such as social media, online support, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This body of research will aim to identify the issues most pertinent to men, as they remain the UK group with the highest prevalence of suicide and the lowest participation in bereavement support activities. Objectives will include:

  • Determining what factors influence the UK males bereaved by suicide population to seek/avoid support
  • Determining what factors influence the UK males bereaved population to receive/not receive support
  • Understanding the aspects of UK male suicide bereavement that are often more obscure, such as the sense of loss of a future that will never unfold, loss of career, and shifts in social dynamics
  • Understanding UK male characteristics i.e., cultural, socioeconomic, education, ethnic, gender, personality, any prior trauma drivers and resulting modifications to resilience levels, that are key factors to postvention being available, taken up, and/or effective.

Recent Publications:

  • Baker, A.J.M., Grant, C.J., Martin, M.H., Shaw, S.C., & Whitebrook, J. (1986). Induction and loss of cadmium tolerance in Holcus Lanatus L. and other grasses. The New Phytologist, 102(4), 575-587I am working on generating a publication for submission based on my M.Sc. dissertation: ‘An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis qualitative study to assess the impacts of bereavement by suicide’.

Can help with: I lost my youngest son to suicide on 01-May-2017. I’ve been attending SoBS (Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide) for 4 ½ years and the administrator, and a facilitator, of the London group since the start of 2021. I can provide a view on the impacts of suicide from a lived experience perspective.

What’s essential to your well-being? From a research perspective, feeling that I’m contributing to knowledge that can drive change and improved the lot of those bereaved by suicide. In my personal life, my wife and family plus two young Australian Labradoodles that keep me amused, happy and healthy. I’m also into football and follow my team home and away; although I care about performances and results, the main thing is the camaraderie and support of those I’m with on trips.

Find John elsewhere: