Discussion in 'Suicidal Thoughts and Feelings' started by Richards, Oct 23, 2007.

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  1. Richards

    Richards Member

    I have a question and I am not sure if this is the right forum to post it in as I am new here. I apologise if I have chosen the wrong forum or if the question seems inapropriate.

    Regarding the issue of confidentiality when someone discloses suicidal feelings to you I have some misgivings. Standard protocol is to not keep the persons statement in confidence and to go report it. Is it always wrong to promise confidentiality?

    If someone just needs someone to confide in and that may be all it could take to save their lives, what if they are afraid to say anything because you will report them?

    What if someone is afraid to tell someone what they are going through because they are afraid the person will call 911 or something? Could it be appropriate to promise confidentiality so long as the person just states having suicidal feelings but there is no immediate death threat?

    I would really appreciate some constructive feedback on this matter.
  2. mango_goose

    mango_goose Active Member

    Im studying to be a social worker and in a client worker case we have to tell the person that everything they tell us is confidential unless they are going to harm themselves or someone else or they disclose information on a child that is being abused....

    in a personal situation if someone told me they were gonna do something like that n not to tell anyone, i would tell them straight that im worried bout them and i care bout them and that because i care bout them i will have to tell somebody
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 23, 2007
  3. Richards

    Richards Member

    I had a job once where I worked with younger people and I basically had to tell them the same thing and in one case a person mentioned it so I had to report it. I understand that in such a job you have to follow that procedure.

    Do you not think though that a person may hear that and be afraid to open up to you in the first place if that is the rule? I sometimes wonder if the ones who did die without warning might have spoken up if they felt that they could have spoken to someone for comfort without fear of being reported.
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