by Mary 23 Replies latest jw friends

  • Mary

    How do you feel about euthanasia for people that are terminally ill and have no hope of recovery? Should it be made legal for them to be allowed to die a peaceful death by a simple injection as opposed to dying a painful and agonizing death? I ask, because a co-worker of mine is dying of cancer and he's in alot of pain. He has the morphine patches on, but it doesn't do a whole lot of good. He told me in private that he wished Dr. Korvorkian was around to help him end it, as he was just tired of the pain, the tests, the chemotherapy, etc.

    I for one, agree with him. If you have a sick pet who is slowly dying, you generally have them put to sleep to prevent them suffering anymore, so why can't we do this with humans?

  • Introspection

    I think a better question is how those people feel about it, or anyone considering the option. Clear thinking is something to consider, but if someone wants to end their life they're going to do it. Hell, if I wanted to do it nobody who can prevent me from doing so would probably even know about it.

  • Thunder Rider
    Thunder Rider

    I think quality of life should be considered when treating the terminally ill. A lot of the extreme measures taken to keep someone alive are more for the families benifit than the patients. When pain makes every waking moment unbearable, the kind thing to do is allow the sufferer to pass peacefuly to whatever awaits. Oblivion beats agony any day of the week.


  • beckyboop

    I agree with all of you--I think that WE have the right (it's my body) to determine if we want pain to end. I think it's sad that many people are forced to endure pain so that the "family" doesn't have to say goodbye. I guess this just goes along with my thinking that our government has way too much say over what we do with our own bodies.


  • mouthy

    I watched my Husband die with cancer- He begged me to help him die....I couldnt...I believe if the Dr say they can do no more to help the patients condition & THEY believe they will soon die- I think it is a good thing- I couldnt do it for someone-but there are people that could.Now I will also add I am a Christian-& every other Christian I know are shocked at me saying this....They feel I am overiding God. But that is my opinion...So sorry Mary for your friend. It is hard to watch this also I have done it to many times....

  • Rado Vleugel
    Rado Vleugel

    Hi Mary,

    As far as I know my country (the Netherlands) is the only country that allows euthanasia by law. I am happy that we have this law in our country

    On April 10, 2001, a Dutch law permitting both euthanasia and assisted suicide was approved. That law which went to effect on April 1, 2002, is summarized below:

    Due Care is required

    • Requires that the physician "has terminated a life or assisted suicide with due care." [Chapter II, Article 2, 1,f.] This requirement – that the procedure be carried out in a medically appropriate fashion – transforms the crimes of euthanasia and assisted suicide into medical treatments.
    • Specifically allows euthanasia for incompetent patients. Persons 16 years old and older can make an advance "written statement containing a request for termination of life" which the physician may carry out. [Chapter II, Article 2, 2.] The written statement need not be made in conjunction with any particular medical condition. It could be a written statement made years before, based upon views that may have changed. The physician could administer euthanasia based on the prior written statement.
    • Teenagers 16 to 18 years old may request and receive euthanasia or assisted suicide. A parent or guardian must "have been involved in decision process," but need not agree or approve. [Chapter II, Article 2, 3]
    • Children 12 to 16 years old may request and receive euthanasia or assisted suicide. A parent or guardian must "agree with the termination of life or the assisted suicide." [Chapter II, Article 2, 4]
    • A person may qualify for euthanasia or assisted suicide if the doctor "holds the conviction that the patient's suffering is lasting and unbearable." [Chapter II, Article 2, 1b] There is no requirement that the suffering be physical or that the the patient be terminally ill.

    I wish you and your co-worker strength in this difficult time,
    Rado vleugel

  • Shutterbug
    There is no requirement that the suffering be physical or that the the patient be terminally ill.

    No requirement tht the suffering be physical of that the patient be terminally ill ?? In other words this is just a ploy to help the mentally ill commit suicide. Really don't know how that can make anyone feel better. Bug

  • DazedAndConfused

    My personal feeling is that if anyone is terminally ill...they are going to die anyway. If you are going to die anyway, why not die with dignity and a choice on how and when?

    It is interesting to note that when I brought this same subject up with my parents (both JW's and my dad being a servant) my mom said she would feel it was wrong and my dad said he would be for euthanasia.

    I am all for it. If we have this much compassion for a pet and will put it out of its misery...why isn't it ok for us to have our own choice on the matter?

  • shera

    Not me,I couldn't do it.I couldn't live with myself knowing that I helped someone die ,even if it was thier choice.

    I also don't agree with prolonging someone suffering ither.If I were to ever have a terminal illness and I were to suffer.I would not take medication or any type of health care to keep me alive a few more months or a yr.I wouldn't expect my loved one to do that ither.

  • Scully

    Death is such a difficult subject for so many people, even seasoned professionals.

    In Canada, it is still illegal for a medical professional to perform a procedure that will cause or hasten the death of another person.

    However, someone who is terminally ill does have the option of having a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order. This is an Advance Medical Directive that outlines the patient's wishes in terms of devices that will be used or not used, the patient's wishes in terms of pain control, and other comfort measures associated with their care. A psychiatric assessment is usually needed to determine the patient's competence to make that decision, and to ascertain whether the patient truly is ready to die and not just frustrated with being sick/in hospital/incapacitated.

    I have been present at the deaths of several terminally ill patients during my nurses' training. There was a huge difference in the demeanour of patients who had taken control of their destiny and opted to "die with dignity" as opposed to those who had unfinished business on this earth that they felt they needed to use every medical and non-medical treatment available to them in order to have more time.

    As a nurse, I have felt a greater sense of spirituality in providing care for patients who have died than I ever did in all those years worth of hours I spent knocking on doors and going to meetings at the KH.

    Mary, if your friend is truly at the point where he wishes to cease treatment, he needs to communicate that to his family and friends and to the doctors and nurses who are caring for him. Once the decision is made, he can get on with the more important business of tying up the loose ends and spending time with the people he loves. He can have hospice care in his own home, have his friends and family with him, whatever he wants. Once the DNR order is written, the focus of his care will shift from one of trying to "fix" him to one of making sure that he is comfortable.

    It isn't the same as putting a pet to sleep - I don't think we'll be seeing human euthanasia legalized in Canada any time soon - but this is the most humane way we have right now.

    Love, Scully

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