The Right To Die  

rm_pchamp012004 55M
1324 posts
10/6/2005 4:26 pm

Last Read:
3/5/2006 9:27 pm

The Right To Die

So much for lightening up.

The Supreme Court is taking up the case of an Oregon law allowing doctors to prescribe a lethal dose of pain killers to allow assisted suicide. The Feds have countered that it is illegal to prescribe any medication approved by the FDA for this purpose.

Now this has given me some pause, as I am generally pro-life. Considering it further, if an adult (in his/her right mind) wants to commit suicide as an alternative to a painful death ... they should have every right to do so.

How does this fit in with my pro-life stance? I have justified it with the fact that this is an adult making a decision that affects only him/herself, while abortion is done on a fetus that doesn't have a choice.

Certain checks would have to be put into place to ensure the mental state of the patient, and to make sure the illness is incurable, terminal and painful.

Another consideration will be the insurance companies. Life insurance does not pay-off in the event of suicide and some new arrangements will have to be worked out for euthanasia (since the patient will die anyway, possibly a reduced benefit would be in order). If the insurance company is covering both health and life of the patient, it would actually be cheaper for the company to pay-off on the life policy than to cover medical expenses and then 6-12 months later still pay the life policy.

That brings us to a final rule. A doctor (or especially an insurance company) should never be the one to bring up euthanasia to a patient. This has got to be something a person comes to by him/herself.

These are my thoughts on this topic, what are yours?

This should be interesting.

rm_saintlianna 45F
15466 posts
10/6/2005 5:36 pm

If I thought it wouldnt affect my standing in Heaven( no suicides allowed, Catholic) I would do it in a heartbeat. I hope if I ever get that sick, some kind person will do it for me. There are worse things than death.

rm_sj365 55F
2414 posts
10/6/2005 6:04 pm

oy... I tried to walk away from this blog and not copmment, I just couldnt. I wont touch the euthanasia / right to life argument, mostly because I personally can't connect the dots on that one.

I will however share my feeling on the subject of euthanasia. I think that there are many different situations that might cause a person to wish an end less painful. I watched my father-in-law suffer a horrific death from a rare cancer. The doctors kept giving him more & more morphine & promising us that soon he would slip into a coma from the high doses and thereby reduce his suffering ( though I see holes in that theory as we dont really know what is & isnt experienced during coma)...anyhow, the doctors and nurses all commented that they were giving the largest doses allowable, and more than one seemed genuinely sorry that they could not risk mercifully overdosing him.

He suffered for 9 long days befor passing away in pain, in spite of the morphine & whatever else they were giving him.

Had you asked me in the month befor his illness & death I would have responded that there was no way I could take a persons life under any circumstances. Ask me the same question after having seen what I have seen? I will tell you I wish I had posessed the courage to put a pillow on his pain contorted face.

We have living wills which are legal documents detailing what measures will will allow to save our lives. Why cant we have something similar detailing how we will end them?

rm_pchamp012004 55M
2672 posts
10/6/2005 6:11 pm

Lianna, I'm Catholic too, and suicide is the only mortal sin you can't repent from, but I have to believe that G-d is understanding enough to overlook this kind of transgression.

PailsDiverHonks 55F

10/6/2005 6:23 pm

My thoughts...I can't even have my dogs euthanised

duststormdiva 51F
6854 posts
10/6/2005 6:30 pm

My father has always supported Dr. Kavorkian for assisting terminal patients with their deaths.

When Dad was put on hospice he mentioned to the nurse that if it got to the point that he was going to die, he didn't want to be gasping for air and he wanted me to give him a pill to end his life quickly and painlessly.

The nurse retorted, "We can't do anything to encourage your death, we are here just to keep you comfortable."

I was surprised that he wanted his life to end and he wanted me to end it for him painlessly. As much as I love my father and wanted him to be out of pain, I could never have given him anything that would have killed him.

The awesome thing about hospice is they truly do EVERYTHING they can to keep their patients comfortable. That is their soul purpose. Anything the patient wanted, they got. Near the end of my fathers life all he would do was eat ice cream, and drink water. The hospice nurses encouraged me to buy him all the ice cream he wanted. They also kept us supplied with all the morphine he asked for.

Morphine helped with his breathing. Dad was never in pain, but sure did suffer from air deprivation and morphine helped open up the pathways to his lungs.

I agree that if he was in terrible pain and he wanted his life to end and he was terminal it should be his choice. However, on the other hand I am glad that I am not the one who had to make that choice to end his life and administer the medication.


rm_1hotwahine 63F
21091 posts
10/7/2005 2:19 am

As frequently happens, I believe that MzHuny has summed it up perfectly. Four words. That simple.

I knew the jelly bean types posts wouldn't last! Yea!

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

rm_pchamp012004 55M
2672 posts
10/7/2005 6:52 am

I am not advocating assisting in suicide. I could never live with myself after I helped a loved one end his/her life. I am simply saying that a choice should be available to the patient. I watched both my parents die of cancer, and that is not something I want my kids to have to go through.

rm_1hotwahine 63F
21091 posts
10/7/2005 11:20 am

I like the idea of making it easy for the individual to perform the act for him/herself. That way it's between the person and their own beliefs and fate.

I watched my mom die of cancer as well. It's an experience that one cannot grasp unless they've been there - wishing the person you love most in the world would die. But no, as intensely as I wanted her to no longer suffer the pain, I would not have wanted to be part of the process of making it happen.

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

goddessofbitches 41M/33F

10/7/2005 11:35 am

I don't know my thoughts on this. I am not sure how I feel about abortion. I do know that if I ever got pregnant again, I would keep the baby. But...since I have an IUD...this discussion as brought about a change. See...with an IUD, there is a chance of's very small...but even with tubal litigation..(tying of tubes) it's possible. If I should get pregnant with an IUD...there is a small chance of brain damage and other things. If I ever discovered my child would be harmed...or be born with some kind of defect that would hinder life for them...cause them to never walk, run, talk, take part in the joys of life...I would abort. I just couldn't see letting them live a life unhappy...being nothing. Under normal circumstances...I could never do it. I would take responsibility and take care of it.

As for suicide...well...don't soldiers in a battle field give morphine to other soldiers when wounded beyond recovery to help ease the pain and let them die quicker? Don't other people shoot hurting animals or people in the head to get the death over sooner?
I don't know how to answer this seeing as I haven't taken a side. But to me, it's like pulling the plug on someone in a comma...or like that girl that was starved to death recently...
There are rules and different aspects when killing someone else is ok...and yet...killing ourselves...isn't. I don't think anyone should take their own life...and yet I don't like to see people suffer either.
I guess, if I had to choose right now...I would say let them. If they can't escape the pain...and everyone in their family has said their goodbyes...then let them free themselves.


Always The Bitch

barbiebunny 36F
5597 posts
10/7/2005 12:21 pm

You know.. Samurais fell upon their sword with dishonor. People were spared a suffering death with a quick one by the hand of a knight. The middle ages got this Issue why cant we? In our age of sophistocation to make it pain free and easy..we have to get into our own way instead of trusting people as adults with a moral code.

Sure there needs to be a safety net to ensure there isnt abuse, but in the right instances if that is ones wish, in that much pain let them do as they please. They have earned it their the pain of suffering.

Someone with Aids whose organs are liqufying inside of them cannot have the option of a graceful death? That is humane not to let them feel that kind of pain if they so desire to.

Just my 2 cents but I have seen a lot of suffering in mylife.

Its good to be...ME

papyrina 51F
21133 posts
10/7/2005 2:14 pm

i'm totally for it in the invent of a ong term illness,i have agreed with my mum and dad that if i could i would help them,hubby is unsure if he would help me but i'd find away for my self.

with todays medicine we can keep people going on for far too long,peace and dgnity is what people want.

We have a choice to live in peace and lead a dignified life but how many do get that chance to die one

I'm a

i'm here to stay

rm_pchamp012004 55M
2672 posts
10/7/2005 5:53 pm

Anemone, I think Alzheimers (though it is probably the disease I am most afraid of) would not qualify. A patient would have to be mentally competant to make this decision.

I have a living will, and would urge any of you out there that are concerned with "quality of life" to get one. This tells the doctors just how far you want them to go in keeping you alive. This takes the onus off of your children of making that terrible decision.

Goddessofbitches, stopping life support is one thing, but what they did to Terry Shiavo in Fla was un-human.

rm_pchamp012004 55M
2672 posts
10/7/2005 5:55 pm

Bunny, you can put your 2 cents in anytime

tillerbabe 55F

10/8/2005 12:33 am

I see so much unecessary suffering in my line of work. My co-workers and I often look at each other with some of the things we see, and we have an understanding: All is said is,
"Shoot me."

Too often I see the elderly, people with aids, cancer etc. forced "alive" by the people that do not expereince their pain. This is pure selfishness in my eyes. Keeping "others' alive for our well being...

My Dad never wanted to be kept alive by mechanical means - he made this clear long before he became ill - we took him off life support and the Dr. slowly euthanized him with morphine. It was peaceful, respectful, painless and we were all there. Thank God for the empathy.

I would suggest, (and I am by no means presuming anything), that if you haven't seen someone suffer under these circumstances and you are undecided on this: Do some volunteer work at a local hospice, nursing home or aids house.....your eyes may open wider.

Thanks Champ....kisses to you for bringing up this subject. {=}

rm_1hotwahine 63F
21091 posts
10/8/2005 4:35 pm

I really liked the way Bunny stated it.

However, the Terry Schiavo thing is not as black and white to me as it is to you. I never did figure out where I stood on that one, only prayed that I am never in the situation of the husband or the parents.

Yeah, I'm still [blog 1hotwahine]

rm_pchamp012004 55M
2672 posts
10/10/2005 7:41 am

tiller, kisses back

wahine, the Terry Schiavo thing is what got me to write a living will. If that got others to do the same, her tradgedy will not have been in vain.

darkdreamsofu 52F

10/12/2005 6:33 pm

I am totally for "death with dignity." most of us allow our pets the honor of a dignified death, without pain. But, this is not so easy with human life. I have seen many people hang on to their loved ones for the miracle that never occured. Instead, there were days, weeks or months of endless lingering in agony as death slowly approached. I am a true beiever in quality of life. The ability to enjoy lifes joys, happinesses, and pleasures. As far as Alzheimer's, how about we add that to advanced directives/livingwill with details as to the level of metal deterioration. Then when you hit that low, an injection of a wonderful dreamy narcotic, and off into a peaceful eternal rest shall you flow.
Great blog, btw. Interesting to locate on this site.

rm_pchamp012004 55M
2672 posts
10/14/2005 3:59 pm

darkdreams, thanks ... I could live with your solution for Alzheimers. My greatest fear is to degenerate into a drooling vegetable and I would much rather be dead.

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