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On Out Own Terms: Moyers on Dying
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This self-assessment does not give you any cute nicknames or tell you how well adjusted you are. What it does is give you insight into your attitude about death. After answering the questions, click on "What does your answer to these questions say?" to assess your responses.

  1. To the best of your memory, at what age were you first aware of death?
    Under the age of 3
    Age 3 to 5
    Age 5 to 10
    Age 10 and up

  2. When you were a child, how was death talked about in your family?
    As though death were a forbidden subject
    With some discomfort
    Don't remember any talk about death
    Only when necessary, and not in front of children

  3. Which of the following most influences the way you think about death now?
    Death of someone close
    TV, movies, radio
    Things you have read
    Length of time family members have lived
    Own health

  4. Has religion played an important part in the way you think about death?
    Very important
    Not very important
    No part at all

  5. How often do you think about your own death?
    At least once a day
    Not more than once a year
    Never or almost never

  6. What does death mean to you?
    The end of life
    End of physical life; the spirit lives on
    Endless sleep and peace
    Don't know
    A new beginning, of life after death

  7. What thing about your own death bothers you the most?
    I could no longer have any experiences
    I am afraid of what might happen to my body after death
    I am not sure what will happen to me if there is life after death
    I could no longer provide for my family
    My relatives and friends would grieve
    The process of dying might be painful

  8. What do you believe causes most deaths?
    Most deaths happen because the person wants to die
    Most deaths happen because of the way the person uses or fails to use things such as tobacco, alcohol, medicines, or seat belts
    Most deaths just happen

  9. If your doctor knew that you would die from a disease and had a limited time left to live, would you want the doctor to tell you?
    Depends on circumstances

  10. If it were possible, would you want to know the exact date on which you were going to die?

Adapted from an assessment tool from Michael Seago, Medical Innovations, 1994. Reprinted by permission from

Copyright 2000, Educational Broadcasting Corporation/Public Affairs Television, Inc.

On Our Own Terms - Moyers on DyingThirteen/WNET New YorkPBS Online