Thoughts on Euthanasia

Discussion in 'Religion and Ethics' started by Pogo, Jan 1, 2013.

  1. Pogo
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    Pogo Diamond Member

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    I have a friend (no really, a real person) - a very dear friend I've been in close contact with for almost 30 years. Due to a chronic illness that carries no hope of recovery she's been dealing with for the last dozen years, the endless stream of drugs she needs to get through day to day, the limitations of the medical system to get any kind of financial help for her, and being cleaned out of everything she received from the class action suit against the drug company that created this condition, she's in the process of giving up and making plans to "check out".

    She's told me in matter-of-fact terms what possessions she'd like me to pick up after she goes, and is in the process of getting such affairs in order so that she can proceed. We've established that it would be asking too much of her to at some point tell me goodbye, so as we talk by phone I never know if this is my last conversation with her.

    This is a heavy thing. Has anyone been in a similar position?
     
  2. JakeStarkey
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    JakeStarkey Diamond Member Supporting Member

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    Suicide is, I guess, a self euthanasia. I don't believe scriptures prohibit it. I do not believe that another man or woman can tell another person authoritatively that such is wrong. Your friend will know when her time is best, and I hope you will support her.

    The real issue down the road will come when Americans of all political beliefs, in the name of resource protection, will be promoting 3rd-party determination by government of those who should be put down, a la the Nazis. From the far left to libertarians to the far right, you will witness support for such a program. Perhaps their opponents will euthanize such supporters without being caught.
     
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  3. Pogo
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    Pogo Diamond Member

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    Perhaps I should have specified the idea here is self-euthanasia ... or euthanasia by mutual consent. Just so we don't get dragged off to some "death panel" tangent, which would completely disrespect the situation here. Let's avoid that breakdown.

    I absolutely support my friend; I've been her shoulder to lean on for many years and I know too well what she's been through. I guess there's nothing more I can do to support her beyond that, although I so wish there was some magic I could bring that would just make her well and it would all go away...
     
  4. JakeStarkey
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    JakeStarkey Diamond Member Supporting Member

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    No such magic exists. I hurt for you, and I sorrow for your friend. I hope she is not hurting much and the she can end it with dignity. I am sad for both of you. My sister is terminal, and the hole in my heart is as large as the one for my grown daughter who passed. Talking feelings out about these matters is good. I did not mean to disrespect your friend.
     
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  5. Pogo
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    Pogo Diamond Member

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    I know that. Just didn't want to leave the door open for the hijackers :D

    Thanks for your thoughts.
     
  6. Hollie
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    Hollie Gold Member

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    The husband of a friend of mine, (he was 28 years old), with 2 young daughters was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and given 5 months to live. He and his wife turned to religion, and began a relentless prayer vigil hoping that it would save him. Even with drugs for pain, he suffered terribly. The most difficult thing for him was to limit visits with their girls because his physical appearance was also deteriorating. My friend confided in me that near the end, her husband wanted to end his life because nothing was controlling his pain. My friend was taking valium and an anti-depressant and her husband wanted her to leave both, newly filled prescriptions which he was going to use to end his life. He died pretty much right on schedule and what's worse, he died just over a week before Christmas (his kids took that particularly hard). The most crushing disappointment for him was for his girls to see him only a month before his death. The once doting dad was almost unrecognizable as the result of the withering effects of cancer.

    Now his death was effectively a foregone conclusion (yes, even embracing a one-in-a-billion chance for remission), but in the end, his suffering and inability to choose his own end was transformed into a crushing blow to his dignity and a blow to her faith that has never recovered.
     
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  7. PretentiousGuy
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    PretentiousGuy Member

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    In America you must administer the drug yourself after the request goes through the approval process. Self euthanasia is something of a redundancy in this context.
     
  8. uscitizen
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    uscitizen Senior Member

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    Aside from her finiancial position I am in her position. I have already outlived my doctors estimate by a couple of years, but refuse to live a few more months as a vegetable once I get to that stage.
    I will check out when it becomes too bad.

    It is not easy on friends and family but they do not disagree.
    I will do it a non messy manner.
    No sense in adding to their grief or shock.

    Pogo continue to be a friend and support your friend.
    It is the best thing you can do for her.
     
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    Last edited: Jan 1, 2013
  9. TwistedSuze13
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    TwistedSuze13 a b normal

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    No, I haven't been in those shoes exactly but I've known a couple where the husband had pancreatic cancer and was given one month to live.
    He was still alive 4 months later but was deteriorating quickly.
    I know he had access to extra morphine, but I could never ask about something that private....I only speculated.
    I only knew I could not blame him for hastening the end.

    My heart goes out to all of you.

    All I can add is that when attending the memorial service for a friend's friend, who was terminally ill and had taken his own life, I thought it was outstanding that the pastor stated he did not believe anyone who takes their own life is damned (Catholic belief).
    This was a Methodist church.
    I wish more non-Catholic clergy would state that when they find themselves doing a memorial for a suicide.
    People need to hear that stated out loud.

    I've never believed a person's soul was in trouble because they took their own life.
    JMO, but I think God knows better than anyone just what that person has been thru....whether it's a terminal illness or maybe depression and despair by themselves that are off the scale.....a tortured soul.

    I think the Catholic belief in this area is beyond Cruel.


    I don't really know what else to say....I mostly just wanted to mention the Methodist pastor stating that out loud at a memorial service.
     
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  10. Bill Angel
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    Bill Angel Gold Member

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    Here is a section from a video, devoted to explaining the importance of the discovery of the Higgs boson, in which a physicist discusses why there is no life after death. TubeChop - Higgs Boson and the Fundamental Nature of Reality - Sean Carroll - Skepticon 5 (01:51)
     

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