A Tough Subject-Assisted Suicide

See note at bottom of post….

I’ve read a few times recently in the blogging sphere and in the news, of those wishing to die by assisted suicide. This is a really tough and controversial subject, but I decided to weigh in on it. This is MY opinion only!

I’m going to write about this outside of my Christian belief, because while I feel that is a valid consideration, that is not what our laws are based on, in this decision.

There are many people with diseases and conditions that are not curable, and are very debilitating. Some of those afflicted wish that assisted suicide was a choice, and would like the laws changed to reflect their wishes.

In our society as it is now, while assisted suicide is not the law. there are situations that occur in which a patient is in extreme duress relating to pain and suffering, that the doctors are within their protocol to not prolong the suffering of a person, in that there are no life saving resuscitation methods or machines used to keep that person alive. In most of these instances pain medication is used to alleviate the distress as much as possible. At least that is my understanding and experiences that I am aware of.

While I do understand that there are those that do not fall into that category, and are just not wanting to keep living with their debilitating condition, I’m going to express my feelings why this would be difficult to regulate.

To me, the most significant reason is that it would be such a ‘relative and arbitrary’ decision for a group of people; medical, psychological, legal and moral… to sit and ‘judge’ whether or not to apply this to an individual. What are they to use as their basis. The disease, the perceived progression of it, the symptoms and condition, or just the fact that the person has decided they don’t want to live anymore? What then if it’s not a medical condition but a mental or psychological issue that the person has? Where is the line drawn?

Photo Credit stockvault.net photos

Photo Credit
stockvault.net photos

If a law were to be made to allow a person to make this decision, what then if the family of that person objects? What then if a family decides FOR the person with a lengthy illness…. for example someone in a coma, or an elderly person who the family thinks that their loved one would want it, or THEY want it? What then if our society decides that someone who is in a vegetative state, or is very old and bed-ridden and is using up Medicare costs? It’s not such a stretch…..

Where and who and how will it progress from one law, to allow assisted suicide for those who feel they have that right?

It will be said of course that I don’t have an illness that is such that I want to end my life. Incidentally I do have M.S. but am not severely debilitated by it.  I will say though, that in my lifetime I did want to die, and in my depression if such a law had existed, even though my Christian belief is that only God should have that decision, I ‘might’ have still done it. The reason I maybe would have is that all I could see is darkness and sadness and I would not have been making a rational or conscious decision. Being free from depression many years now, I can see that so much would have been changed if I had done so; in my family and friends’ and my life. So there will be many, and maybe some who read this that say…. that is not their situation. Their situation is different and they want to be able to decide and that they are of sound mind.

All I can say is, that while I sympathize greatly for them, it would be such a ‘slippery slope’ if such a law was made, and how far does that slope extend?… ‘in MY opinion!

NOTE:  I’m sorry if this showed up twice in your notifications… I had thought I would take this down for a couple of reasons… so I put it back into ‘draft’ but I found out it still showed up only unable to comment…. So I thought I might as well put it back on… I’ve not done this before and so didn’t think about the fact you may get it twice.. Sorry for confusion… Diane

 

7 thoughts on “A Tough Subject-Assisted Suicide

  1. You are right it is a difficult decision. I can’t think out of my Christian faith. If there is no hope for a recovery then by all means make them comfortable and have family with them. My opinion is from the ones who want to do it on the onset of illness because the road will be to difficult. I am a cancer survivor and my mother in law had Alzheimer’s. The nursing home tried to get us to sign papers where they would withhold food from her to make her comfortable to die, at this point she was still feeding herself and chewing. Thus goes my fears if this becomes law then the government will be playing who gets to live and who gets to die. We held onto our belief that only God can call someone home and she died a few years later, still feeding herself until the end. My cancer was aggressive and my doctor treated it with all he had – surgeries, chemo, radiation more surgery. What if the law stepped in and said it is aggressive let us make her comfortable to die? 14 yrs later I am still here. My aunt suffered through her chemo treatments 45 yrs ago – she had pancreatic cancer given 6 months to live. She passed away a few years ago at the ripe ole age of 85. We have living wills and only my children and our family doctor who is also a Christian decides what happens to me if I am unable to make that decision. I value life with all the pain and heartache because there is so much joy and so little time to spend with our loved ones, that if it is me, I would prefer to be in pain if it means I can have a few more extra days with my family and to be prepared when God calls me home. I have been through it, Life is a gift and although I understand and would never judge someone else who needs to make a decision like that – my concern is once it becomes law then the decision is no longer God’s nor mine. Whoever may be reading this – I am not trying to be hurtful if you have a loved one in this situation, I personally feel it should not be a law BUT no one should be accused or tried either if they help their love one in good conscience. I guess freedom to choose instead of making it a law…does that make sense?

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    • It makes total sense Patty… I hope others read this… because that’s the point… There are many who just don’t want to live with their illness… they would prefer death over life..the way they know it..I find that so sad and while I don’t walk ‘in their shoes’ I just don’t believe that is the way to go. But having a ‘law’ that starts the process and the slippery slope… no! Diane

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  2. I believe the attorneys should stay out of the picture. An adult is capable of making decisions every day. An ill person can also make decisions as to their life. Why the law should be involved is sort of a mystery to me. Though, as you say, it can be a slippery slope. Yet, having known people given death sentences by the doctors, I side with the person who is ill. I do believe it should be seriously discussed by the individual and their family, but only them.

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    • I know many suffer… I sometimes wonder why the medical community… or whatever fail to help those in pain…. When my brother found out on a Saturday that he would likely live only a couple of days …filled with cancer… and in fact died on Sunday night, on his last day he was in so much distress with pain, that of course they gave him morphine to control it… and he was at peace for the last hours of his life… Diane

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      • I’m sorry for the loss of your brother. We had a friend that died just a week after his trip to the doctor. At least he was able to die at home surrounded by loved ones. Everyone should be able to die that way.

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  3. Such a tricky situation and I can only speak for myself but if Anthony were in unbearable physical pain (which he isn’t, thank goodness), I would assist him without hesitation.

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