Suicide/Harmful Behavior Checklist
Before you move on to the next section of this chapter Creating Your Plan for SAFETY FIRST! we suggest that you take some time with the two self-assessment scales: the Safety Checklist and the Suicide/Harmful Behavior Checklist. These will help you determine your current level of safety. After each checklist and the scoring information, there are some recommendations which are designed to help you determine whether you are ready to progress with a recovery program.

Suicide/Harmful Behavior Checklist
Check "Yes" or "No" to answer each question:
1. Do you feel chronically depressed? Yes  No
2. Do you have recurring thoughts of killing? Yes  No
3. Do you have a specific plan to kill yourself? Yes  No
4. Have you acquired the means to kill yourself,
such as a supply of pills or a gun?
Yes  No
5. Do you intend to carry out this plan to kill yourself
within a specified time frame?
Yes  No
6. Do you have thoughts of actually killing or
harming others?
Yes  No
7. If yes, have you made specific plans or arrangements or this to occur? Yes  No
SCORING: If you answered "YES" to ANY of the above questions, your
suicide/harmful behavior risk level is HIGH.

Print this checklist if you need your answers for reference. Your entries will be cleared once you leave this page.

RECOMMENDATIONS: Get professional help IMMEDIATELY. If you do not have access to names of private therapists, you should call your county mental health services. ASCA Co-Secretaries may have a list of selected resources for their meeting's particular area, and you can ask for some names and telephone numbers. You need to first lower your suicide/harmful behavior risk before attempting to initiate or continue recovery from your child abuse. The two are probably connected, but it is very important that you concentrate first on stabilizing yourself before delving deeper into your abuse issues. Discuss your answers to these questions with your therapist, so that he or she can make your personal safety and the safety of others the primary focus in your therapy until you have stabilized yourself and feel you are ready to commence or continue recovery efforts.

You should know that your therapist has certain legal and ethical obligations to warn potential victims and, in some cases, to notify the police if s/he reasonably believes that you are suicidal or homicidal, or likely to harm another person. Although this may mean breaking the confidential relationship between the two of you, your therapist is mandated by law to do this and cannot be sanctioned for doing so. This is discussed in greater detail in Chapter Five, in connection with Step Fourteen.

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© 2007 THE MORRIS CENTER, Revised 11/06