Warning: This is a difficult and potentially triggering op-ed
From Wiki: Euthanasia (from Greek: εὐθανασία ‘good death’: εὖ, eu ‘well, good’ + θάνατος, thanatos ‘death’) is the practice of intentionally ending life to eliminate pain and suffering. Different countries have different euthanasia laws.
A.K.A. MAiD: medically assisted in death
There has always been, and will always be, a ton of debate about the ethics of medically assisted suicide. And there should be. This is literally about life and death.
But more and more the ideas of autonomy are beginning to overrule the instinctive fear that rules the debates against making it available.
As mentioned above, the debates won’t end, and shouldn’t. But with those debates there will always be more than a touch of emotional response over intellectual.
And it often comes from inexperience. I have far more experience than any one person should, so let me clear this up for you…
I lost an Uncle to suicide at 3 years old. This was my first funeral. My cousin and best friend had CF, he passed away at 24. I literally spent my youth being told not to get too close to him because he would die. I didn’t listen. He was my best friend. My Father suffered a heart attack in his 30s (he survived thank fuck), I lost not one but two Aunts to bad health care systems, and then I lost a friend to suicide, and then I lost the love of my life to suicide. I could continue, I have lost A LOT of people and have come close to death repeatedly myself. If reapers are real, we are on a first name basis. But back to MAiD, it has been legal in Canada since 2016. And another cousin of mine opted for MAiD just 2 years ago. And we all supported his choice.
Let’s be perfectly clear, the government did not push or encourage his choice. My cousin was HIV positive since the 90s, he was one of the lucky ones who managed to live a long and relatively good life. There were periods before he found the right cocktails were he went through hell. Weight gain, weight loss, not being able to eat, becoming dependant on pot to keep the nausea away, YEARS of this. Years upon years. And he never gave up. And then he lost his beloved partner to cancer (fuck cancer and RIP Shaun). And he survived that. Then he got sick, he contracted a disease that was going to end his life very fast and very ugly.
After everything else, he finally broke. There was no hope, it was inevitable and incurable. He was dying. But he had a choice to exit with integrity and before it got really bad. And he took it. And we supported him. Because it was not about us. It was about him not going through anymore needless pain.
Everyone has the right to decide. It isn’t about YOU. Is it a selfish decision? Maybe, but it should be. No one should be choosing to end their lives because of others. You are absolutely right, in that case we need way better mental health. Karen, you seem to be confused about how this works, no one is allowing MAiD on mentally unstable people. They literally have to be mentally evaluated for their state of mind before being accepted.
Alan wasn’t unstable, he was one of the most rational intelligent people I have ever known. He found Buddha most of his life. He wouldn’t hurt a fly. But he knew it was over and did an incredibly brave and hard thing. And he took the chance to say goodbye and prepare everyone around him. And with the suicides I have known, that was more than any of them did.
The people who are against MAiD (in my experience) haven’t actually known anyone who chose it. They haven’t talked to us either, the family those people left behind.
Do you think we are callous? Unloving? My friend, it is quite the opposite. And I sincerely hope no one you love is ever in such bad medical shape that they opt for this. But if it ever happens, I hope they have the right to exit with peace, and I hope you open your mind and heart and support their choice.
You have a right to your opinions but do your research and make sure your research isn’t one-sided. And for the love of humanity, don’t trash people without walking a mile in their shoes.