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Euthanasia vs. Assisted living

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
this was brought up in the Terry Schiavo poll thread, and actually I want to know. Personally I believe in euthanasia if the person is in a position that they will suffer from living, or if they are living only in the vegetative sense of the word.

I do however have my worries that if brought to pass as a law, it may be abused by the elderly that "have no one" but aren't suffering from a terminal disease, or suffering a severe neurological disorder (read: coma, brain damage, severe alzheimers) I think I've read that in certain areas, like holland they're finding the system to be helpful on medical expenses and care, but easily abused.

I wish it had been an option for my grams.. I know she wouldn't have wanted to be the way she was in her last year.

Opinions?
post #2 of 21
I think euthanasia should be a choice for those terminally ill and suffering, or for end of life decisions for those in a coma or vegetative state. The biggest objections I heard in the Terri Schiavo thread was that starving her to death was cruel, and I agree there should be a better option. We wouldn't do that to our pets, and yet there is no option like that for our families.

Of course, it would have to be well thought out legislation to ensure minimal to no abuse.
post #3 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb
I think euthanasia should be a choice for those terminally ill and suffering, or for end of life decisions for those in a coma or vegetative state. The biggest objections I heard in the Terri Schiavo thread was that starving her to death was cruel, and I agree there should be a better option. We wouldn't do that to our pets, and yet there is no option like that for our families.

Of course, it would have to be well thought out legislation to ensure minimal to no abuse.
Well said.
post #4 of 21
I truthfully think that it should be an option. A closely regulated option, mind you, but nonetheless an option. I have an uncle who committed suicide long before the cancer that he had would have taken his life, just because he couldn't take it anymore. I also had a discussion with my mom the other day about the Terri Schiavo case, and made her promise me that if I were ever in that state, just please to let me go on, 'cause that's no way to live a life!
post #5 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by valanhb
I think euthanasia should be a choice for those terminally ill and suffering, or for end of life decisions for those in a coma or vegetative state.
That pretty much expresses my feelings. I would like the option to be available legally (I'm aware that there are cases where people have been "put to sleep" by family members or doctors).
post #6 of 21
I agree that there should be a choice. I also believe that in order to keep it from being abused, that written consent by the person whose life is involved should be required.
post #7 of 21
I think you need to define Euthanasia given some of the answers. Do you simply refer to:
1) Assisted: Where the doctor actively injects something into the person which kills the person.
2) Passive: Life support is turned off so it is nature taking its course and the person dies. Or a DNR is issued

Also there is the question of choice since you did not mention how wide your scenario extends. Are you perhaps confining the question to the case at hand where a person leaves no living will and is not conscious.
post #8 of 21
Thread Starter 
I think the issue with the written concsent is there is a point wher ebrain damage is so severe, or the point where in alzheimers the brain becomes equivalently functional to a severely brain damaged person (read vegetable) They stop talking. they stop ... existing.

How do you get consent there..?
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtlecat
I think the issue with the written concsent is there is a point wher ebrain damage is so severe, or the point where in alzheimers the brain becomes equivalently functional to a severely brain damaged person (read vegetable) They stop talking. they stop ... existing.

How do you get consent there..?

People who feel strongly enough on this issue should give their written consent "in the event of this happening, I want......" while they are young or before they become too ill. I know, that I am only 27 but know now that if I do not have a quality life, I do not wish to live. I am having a will drawn up which will go more in to detail.

People need to take the burden off of their loved ones.
post #10 of 21
turtlecat: Consent as in the form of living wills, which you can make anytime, even right now. Which is why I was asking you whether are you confining the situation to one where a person has no living will and has become brain damage and cannot give consent.
post #11 of 21
Since a member of my family committed suicide yesterday , you'd think I'd have problems with euthenasia. I can say that it is extremely extremely extremely difficult for family members to come to terms with a person's suicide, but if someone is in great physical pain due to defect or disease, and only if it is proven that they are in great suffering before so, I am not at all opposed to euthenasia.
post #12 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ugaimes
Since a member of my family committed suicide yesterday , you'd think I'd have problems with euthenasia. I can say that it is extremely extremely extremely difficult for family members to come to terms with a person's suicide, but if someone is in great physical pain due to defect or disease, and only if it is proven that they are in great suffering before so, I am not at all opposed to euthenasia.
O.O I'm sooooo sooory!!! thank you for responding, hon!
post #13 of 21
i think she should be put down with a needle like we do to our pets when they are very sick!
post #14 of 21
I answered Yes.
post #15 of 21
We do it for our pets when they are truly suffering, or when their quality of life has deteriorated to such that the bad way outweighs the good, so why not for the people we love (assuming they are terminal, agree to it, or are in such a state not to be able to make the decision, such as in persistant vegatative state with no chance for recovery).

I vote "yes"
post #16 of 21
Gosh it's such a personal decision I don't know if i can answer yes or no. We had a family friend who was 88 and her quality of life was declining so much and she wanted to die so the next time she ended up in a hospital SHE stopped eating and drinking. Some people didn't approve, but she made her decision. We all said goodbye and she passed within a couple of days. I saw her quality of life slip away, her husband died a while back but she had things to keep her going like she loved the symphony, and her cocktails with friends. But little by little she couldn't leave the house and the cocktails made her sick...so she just didn't care anymore.

I respected her decision but many didn't and were angry with her and her daughter for not force feeding her. I mean what is life? Is it just breathing and eating? Is it
an essence of spirit? I don't think I would want to live
if I didn't have a quality of life. I dont' fear death either (well that much), I think our culture freaks out about death so much this is scary to us. Other cultures seem to embrace it as a part of the journey.
post #17 of 21
My great-uncle died of ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) when I was 12, and I had a first-row seat then, because my grandmother, great-aunt and mother gave him round-the-clock care so that he could die at home, as he wished. It was horrible, and we kids, meaning my siblings and cousins, witnessed it. My cousin was diagnosed with ALS in early 2002, and committed suicide. I really think that if he'd had some assurance that he would be "put out of his misery" once his health had really deteriorated, he could have enjoyed more time with his wife and daughter. He was afraid that the disease would progress so quickly that he wouldn't be able to exercise his will, and thus was robbed of precious time with his family. My twin brother died of leukemia when we were 16, and I found myself in the very unpleasant situation of having to barricade his door when he coded, so that he wouldn't be resuscitated. He asked me to do so, and I'll be forever grateful that my older brother arrived in time to help disconnect the monitors and keep the ****** door shut. I couldn't do it then, but I now find myself capable of euthanizing animals that are so at death's door that keeping them alive for several minutes or hours seems cruel.
My father chose to refuse a feeding tube when he was incapable of eating. I'm happy that he was able to express his desire, but still remember his reproaches - "Why did you let me live?"- after he suffered a massive stroke. The answer is that we had no choice - no extraordinary measures were taken, in accordance with his living will, but he simply didn't die. His life afterwards, in his own words, was "hell".
I seriously think we have to discuss the meaning of "humane".
post #18 of 21
At least this issue raised some important issues. In a way it was "good" the Terri had her heart attack at 26, now younger people will get into their heads that you don't have to be old to think and do something about this issue. I'm holding all day workshops on health care proxies at my family homeless shelter this weekend. I have a feeling that a lot of my clients will show up because of Terri's story...at least I hope so.
post #19 of 21
My gramdma worked in a nursing home for 30 yrs ... Many of those beefore I was born but I saw enough to say YES to this ? ... We are animals and should be given the option.... Maybe I wouldnt have some of the horrible memories I have from growing up in a nursing home enviornment..
post #20 of 21
If the govt. gets involved in personal decisions, who will suffer? Those who don't have the money or family to help them. Where does the gov't involvement end? If it is going to start in our medical care, will it go to what we are teaching our children and what we are buying? I just think it is scary, that the gov't wants to involve themselves in this, and everyone who is a thinking person should be also.
post #21 of 21
Our 25 yr. old daughter made a good point. She said the parents told the media that their daughter would not want to starve to death. Our daughter said that was how she got in this state in the first place - from a heart attack brought on by her eating disorder. Ironic isn't it?
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