There may come a time when I want to die. Hopefully, that time won’t be too soon, although I am aware I am now on the final straight. I don’t particularly want to die at the moment, even though the thought has occasionally crossed my mind when the depression gets too bad, but generally speaking being alive is still better than the alternative. But what happens if and when I start to lose control? Why shouldn’t I have some choice in the matter?
There are numerous stories doing the rounds about people who have decided that when their incurable conditions and illnesses become too much to bear, they will want to end it all by assisted suicide. I am at a loss to understand why we, as a society, prevent them from so doing.
I have been to the vets with pets over the years who have reached the stage where they need to be put out of their suffering, where keeping them alive is an act of cruelty. No one seems to object when an animal is out to sleep so why do people complain when a human being wants to be put to sleep? Why are we compassionate about cats and dogs but not our close relatives?
I’ve got a suggestion here: if you don’t agree with assisted suicide, then don’t agree to it. If your religion, for example, decrees that ending your own life to avoid pain and suffering is against God’s will, then don’t end your own life. It’s that simple. But don’t, then, tell anyone else they can’t end theirs.
Why should someone have to travel to Dignitas in Switzerland in order to die and why should a next of kin fear being arrested by the police and potentially tried for murder? Surely we need our own system. How about the dying equivalent of a midwife?
I haven’t really thought this through, as you may have noticed, although it does seem obvious. People are employed to help you enter the world, so can’t we have people help you to leave it? On the face of it, I suppose it isn’t exactly a cheerful kind of occupation, or is it? If someone is living in a hell on earth – and, spoiler alert, that’s the only type of hell that actually exists – then perhaps it could actually be rewarding to take them out of hell?
I hated seeing my stepfather disappear into a confusing and frightening world caused by Parkinsons and dementia. There are no possible circumstances under which I would want to go through what he went through. I won’t go into detail on a public blog because some things are better kept in the family, but its won’t take much to work it out for yourself.
Whether you have faith or not, you know you will die. Faith may mean you expect to survive your own death, which strikes me as somewhat contradictory. I see death as The End, just as I never lived before I was born. But the end of real life can occur long before clinical death occurs. I’d like to choose what to do if I get the chance. if you disagree, well, it’s none of your business.