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View Poll Results: Euthanasia, what do you think?
Euthansia should be legal option for everyone and I might opt for it 85 79.44%
Euthanasia should be legal option for everyone, but I would never want it 8 7.48%
Against euthanasia 13 12.15%
Other, explain in comments 1 0.93%
Voters: 107. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-08-2008, 06:32 PM   #41
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Yeah, I agree that in today's world you need to deal with this on your own. And, in any world, I don't like dumping the decision on others. I want the burden to be on me. And I believe what I am suggesting would be "on me." In my ideal ideal world (which enables me to direct my own suicide) I would (theoretically) select one of Khan's boilerplate directives that tells the powers that be to off me in my brother's situation. I would not be burdening someone else with my decision. The powers that be would simply be exercising my decision. I am not talking about pulling the plug which is legal today - I am talking about active measures when I might otherwise be viable for sometime but unable to communicate.
As things are now (in the USA), one has to choose to leave early lest one wait too long and have the decision taken away.

I had been looking towards 80, but reviewing the family history suggests 75 might be preferable.

I spent 20+ years as a COBOL programmer and tend to think/reason in terms of flow charts.
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Old 04-08-2008, 06:45 PM   #42
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Has anyone here read Final Exit?
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Old 04-08-2008, 06:46 PM   #43
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Has anyone here read Final Exit?
Yes, have a copy.
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Old 04-08-2008, 06:52 PM   #44
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The flowcharted, "if-then" approach that might result in someone killing you does miss one thing: The person doing the flowcharting, in good health and sitting in the comfort of his home, is not actually in the situation or frame of mind he/she will be in when the automatic decision is "executed." Things might be very different for you when you actually experience the situation, maybe different in ways that are unforeseeable.
Many young people say "I wouldn't want to live to be 80." Many middle aged people see a feeble old-timer inching behind the walker waiting for the Early Bird Special at Denny's and say "dang, I'd rather die than live that way." The funny thing is, when folks actually do get to that condition of frailty, they usually decide to keep going, that they want to live another day. One more day to call their grandkids, maybe go to the library--maybe just to see what the heck is gonna happen next.
No, the decision needs to be made at the time. Yep, you might miss the opportunity, but providing a defense against that possibility comes at too dear a price.
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Old 04-08-2008, 06:56 PM   #45
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Yeah, I agree that in today's world you need to deal with this on your own. And, in any world, I don't like dumping the decision on others. I want the burden to be on me. And I believe what I am suggesting would be "on me." In my ideal ideal world (which enables me to direct my own suicide) I would (theoretically) select one of Khan's boilerplate directives that tells the powers that be to off me in my brother's situation. I would not be burdening someone else with my decision. The powers that be would simply be exercising my decision. I am not talking about pulling the plug which is legal today - I am talking about active measures when I might otherwise be viable for sometime but unable to communicate.
i also feel that the ability to offer directives ought to be both available & legal, but i disagree that the proxy would "simply be exercising my decision" because after the deed is done, they have their own conscience that they have to live with. would i do that for my brother or my mother, of course i would. would i find a way to live with myself, i hope so.
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Old 04-08-2008, 07:00 PM   #46
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The flowcharted, "if-then" approach that might result in someone killing you does miss one thing: The person doing the flowcharting, in good health and sitting in the comfort of his home, is not actually in the situation or frame of mind he/she will be in when the automatic decision is "executed." Things might be very different for you when you actually experience the situation, maybe different in ways that are unforeseeable.
Many young people say "I wouldn't want to live to be 80." Many middle aged people see a feeble old-timer inching behind the walker waiting for the Early Bird Special at Denny's and say "dang, I'd rather die than live that way." The funny thing is, when folks actually do get to that condition of frailty, they usually decide to keep going, that they want to live another day. One more day to call their grandkids, maybe go to the library--maybe just to see what the heck is gonna happen next.
No, the decision needs to be made at the time. Yep, you might miss the opportunity, but providing a defense against that possibility comes at too dear a price.
If we aren't going to help them die, we need to set up a fully-funded way to take care of the old farts: providing housing, transportation, food, housekeeping, personal hygiene...
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Old 04-08-2008, 07:01 PM   #47
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i also feel that the ability to offer directives ought to be both available & legal, but i disagree that the proxy would "simply be exercising my decision" because after the deed is done, they have their own conscience that they have to live with. would i do that for my brother or my mother, of course i would. would i find a way to live with myself, i hope so.
If my mother had asked me to help her die, I would have.
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Old 04-08-2008, 07:13 PM   #48
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my mother asked me but not in so many words as by then alzheimer's had stolen her ability to construct more than one or two sentences at a time. had i asked her again five minutes later to repeat her request she would not have been able to comply. certainly, in her lucid state, before alzheimer's, she never would have considered asking me to risk jail. the best i could do was to assure her that we would keep her as comfortable as possible. i did not see any other moral or legal course of action. euthansia was not applicable.
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Old 04-08-2008, 07:28 PM   #49
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my mother asked me but not in so many words as by then alzheimer's had stolen her ability to construct more than one or two sentences at a time. had i asked her again five minutes later to repeat her request she would not have been able to comply. certainly, in her lucid state, before alzheimer's, she never would have considered asking me to risk jail. the best i could do was to assure her that we would keep her as comfortable as possible. i did not see any other moral or legal course of action. euthansia was not applicable.
My mother did not have Alzheimer's; she had diabetes, crippling arthritis et al, and (at the end) strokes. But I wasn't there, she had a caring husband (my father), and only spent 6 weeks in a nursing home.

I have inherited the crippling conditions and have no caretaker.
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Old 04-08-2008, 07:47 PM   #50
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Has anyone here read Final Exit?
Yeah, I have it. But somewhere up above I noted that Final Exit counsels an awful death involving pills and plastic bags over your head. All because appropriate medications are not legally available.
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Old 04-08-2008, 07:53 PM   #51
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Yeah, I have it. But somewhere up above I noted that Final Exit counsels an awful death involving pills and plastic bags over your head. All because appropriate medications are not legally available.
Apparently there are no tall buildings, bridges, or firearms where the author comes from.
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Old 04-09-2008, 08:20 AM   #52
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Apparently there are no tall buildings, bridges, or firearms where the author comes from.
You forgot the smilie Sam but that is just the point. A gun to the head is pretty efficient (although far from a sure thing) but it sure leaves a mess for your survivors and is a scary thing for the doer. Jumping off a building is even worse. A pill or an injection of insulin and a nod off to la la land in your own bed seems a much more humane (dare I say Christian?) exit. I didn't mean to offend by the Christian remark but, seriously, did any of the Gospels mention Jesus prohibiting suicide? I assume there is some reference in the Old Testament but that document is so full of horrors it seems fair to ignore what you choose - believers certainly do.
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Old 04-09-2008, 11:44 AM   #53
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AL, AL, please tell them again about the quitting eating, would you? Really!

Geez, who wants to find you after the gun goes off or plastic bag what-have-you? Gross!

Khan, having no caretaker (rudely assuming that I will outlive the 8 yr older DH), I've contracted with my younger cousin that if she thinks I'm losing my mind, to please take me way out in the woods and leave me there. If I can find my way back, great, if not, exposure is not so bad a way to go.
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Old 04-09-2008, 02:06 PM   #54
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Maybe we can combine this topic with "It's Wednesday Weigh-ins."

I would think that if you are already quite sick and frail, stopping eating wouldn't be too traumatic. That is, if you've already lost 30% of your body weight, and can't get out of bed, it shouldn't take too long.

Also, people do go on extended fasts, and say you get used to it.
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Old 04-09-2008, 02:33 PM   #55
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My mother did not have Alzheimer's; she had diabetes, crippling arthritis et al, and (at the end) strokes. But I wasn't there, she had a caring husband (my father), and only spent 6 weeks in a nursing home.

I have inherited the crippling conditions and have no caretaker.

sorry about all that. i inherited mom's arthritis especially in my hands & feet and it makes me wonder if i'll be able to enjoy a sailing life later on. though not crippling, i can relate at least a little.

but i totally relate to having no caretaker. i certainly won't have the very good care i gave mom. at least my brother will have his wife and kids if it comes to that.

my fantasy is similar to sarah's only instead of being left in the woods i'll just set myself adrift until i become either shark food or just a ghost ship. being placed in a nursing home, even a good one, with no one to check up on me is not the life i envision.
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Old 04-09-2008, 05:45 PM   #56
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sorry about all that. i inherited mom's arthritis especially in my hands & feet and it makes me wonder if i'll be able to enjoy a sailing life later on. though not crippling, i can relate at least a little.
Mother slowly had to give up things she enjoyed: crocheting, knitting, sewing, gardening, her job (20 hours a week in the local library), hanging out laundry, driving.

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but i totally relate to having no caretaker. i certainly won't have the very good care i gave mom. at least my brother will have his wife and kids if it comes to that.
I like living alone. I fully admit that I am nearly impossible to live with; and I can only imagine how miserable I would make a caretaker as I became more disabled

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my fantasy is similar to sarah's only instead of being left in the woods i'll just set myself adrift until i become either shark food or just a ghost ship. being placed in a nursing home, even a good one, with no one to check up on me is not the life i envision.
Agreed. What's the point?
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Old 04-10-2008, 11:05 AM   #57
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Sorry, I’m late in commenting on several posts. IMO, Having someone at your bedside isn’t always "a grand and a wonderful thing": If it wasn’t confidential, I could tell client stories that make my hair stand on end, and of obits to cringe at.

Another aspect of this is that people who have no handy next-of-kin or friends can sometimes stay in the hospital or nursing home longer. This happened several times to my mom and I think it was a better alternative to leaving earlier to a caregiver. They had to wait until one of us could arrange vacation time and fly there.

Also when she was in home hospice care, there was a nice supply of morphine in the fridge.

Regarding the poll, like so many other topics here, "It Depends."
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Old 05-02-2008, 11:25 PM   #58
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.................................................. ..........................................
As things stand, thousands of doctors and nurses are doing this today but are at risk if some wacko prosecutor wants to challenge their actions.
There are several key words and phrases to keep in mind when the time comes......
"I/we have the right to refuse treatment"
"I/we never wanted it to get to this point"
"mom/dad would never have wanted to continue on like this"
"I/we cannot stand seeing mom/dad suffer like this"
"there must be some medicine that can end the suffering?"
"we know you have done everything possible but maybe there is nothing left to try"
"maybe another doctor would be more comfortable talking about this?"
"Hospice care?"
"morphine?"
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Old 05-03-2008, 07:17 AM   #59
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My mother is 98, and has been in some type of care facility for 10 years, the last 5 of which is a full care nursing home. She is the oldest resident there, and also holds the longest residency title. Most in a nursing home last 2-3 years. she's outlived five roommates. She has senile dementia, is in a wheelchair, and is/was impossible for my sisters and me to care for at home. She has, of late, become almost unresponsive, but still eats well, and continues to live. she has a strong constitution, but on a 1-10 scale, her quality of life is in negative numbers.

Five years ago, she was pleading with us to let her die, but her condition has gotten us past that. She was a caregiver for a couple of older aunts before they had to go to homes, and this was the LAST thing she envisioned for herself. She would have gladly opted for some merciful exit, had it been her choice. We have all the legal documents in place so that there will never be a question when/if we get to the feeding tube/machines stage, but now, we're all just waiting and enduring....

Fortunately, my father made some wise stock decisions years ago that allow us to maintain her despite the expense. (Exxon) She will probably eventually run through it all, which is a shame, because one of my sisters could use the money.
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Old 05-03-2008, 07:19 PM   #60
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Also when she was in home hospice care, there was a nice supply of morphine in the fridge.
Ah, yes. Let's hope that this treatment becomes quite a bit more available for a wide variety of terminal ailments.
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