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warren_stupidity t1_iyhwtgj wrote

This is why assisted suicide ought to be legal.


Maldonian t1_iyi0j4z wrote

That's a reasonable opinion to have and a reasonable thing to debate, but I don't think it would apply in cases like that. I'm not sure if you've ever been around with someone in the later stages of Alzheimer's or dementia, but their mind is so far gone that they're incapable of making basic decisions (such as whether or not to wear a warm coat today), let alone make a decision about their own life. Someone with cancer could be listened to regarding this; someone with dementia cannot.


nixstyx t1_iyi97p8 wrote

This is why it should be legal and only available to people of sound mind -- BUT enforceable if someone stipulates that, "should I ever be incapable of making such a decision ..." Sort of like a DNR, but like, don't keep my body alive if my mind is no longer there.


valleyman02 t1_iyi6ksp wrote

Right and I could argue that it's cruel and unusual punishment to make somebody with advanced alzheimer's spend their life savings to survive. After having literally lost their mind. I get this is a really personal choice and it's a matter of ethics. Which as Americans we don't seem to have much ethics nowadays. At least many of our leaders don't seem to have any ethics. It seems just like everything else that's hard. We just kicked the can down the road. Which I guess is probably human nature. To ignore negative behavior. It's a very personal choice. And I assume in this political environment will never be addressed. So people are going to do what they think is best. Whether it's legal or not.

It was only a hundred years ago where people thought not taking a bath was healthier than taking a bath. And with what we know today that's an easy decision. This one is much harder.


Maldonian t1_iyi9490 wrote

I think everything you said is reasonable and valid, and even if there's a thing or two I disagree with, I wasn't trying to invalidate your opinion. I was just trying to frame the discussion a bit.

1: Should the law allow terminally ill, but mentally sound, people to take their lives? (Doctor assisted suicide.)

2: Should the law allow us to end someone else's life, someone with an unsound mind, if the person doesn't express any wish to die, but is suffering from a terminal mental illness like dementia, with no cure, because the person's spouse or children think it would be for the best if they die today instead of letting the illness play out until the end?

#1 seems to have a fair amount of support from lots of people.

#2 is something most of us have agreed is a reasonable thing to do with our pets. I think it's going to be very, very difficult to get the average citizen and/or many lawmakers on board with allowing it for humans.

In any event, I do agree with you that dementia is a messy and difficult problem, and unless a cure is found, we're going to get more and more of it, as people start to live for more years than they used to in the past. It's both costly and torturous to go through.


valleyman02 t1_iyizifg wrote

Right it shouldn't be in politicians hands. It should be an ethical board of doctors. It's very individual Case by case. Reality is it takes a lot of funding for that care. I don't have an answer. But this is been an issue for 30 plus years and it would be nice to finally move past some of these issues. So we could address some newer issues. Before we're just buried by problems with no solution and everything just blows up. Which seems to be where we're headed.


AMC4x4 t1_iyicxp7 wrote

A relative had Alzheimer's for ten years. As her memory went, she became friendlier and nicer than she had ever been when in control of her faculties. She was just happy to go through her day to day guided activities, she just didn't know anyone or remember anything. Kind of tough to say this person should be assisted suicide, but yeah, she was pretty well off and by the time she died last year, the system had drained every penny she had and then some. She had close to a million dollar house that was sold for her care. It was tragic.


Patsfan618 t1_iyi02yr wrote

Would assisted suicide be an option for someone with severe mental decline? That seems like it'd be fraught with ethical problems. What if they're partner has POA, but the person doesn't consent, themselves? How do you determine that the person is making a legitimate decision and not just saying things? I don't know the answers but it's not a simple solution.


Redsoxy77 t1_iyi3om1 wrote

Ideally, they could have the discussion and even possibly include in legal documents before the person loses capacity.


TXblindman t1_iyi24yi wrote

Would have to be written in an advanced care directive. So you must be of sound mind when writing that. Even then don’t know that would hold up.


Patsfan618 t1_iyi3rqc wrote

Yeah, because if they have a legal written consent, but then withdraw that consent post-decline, is the consent still valid? I'm glad I'm not a medical ethicist because it's way too deep


nothinglefttouse t1_iyi194d wrote

No - in Death with Dignity states you have to be of sound mind


Redsoxy77 t1_iyi3xe3 wrote

Then things like this will continue to happen until something is changed. I am going to Maine at the end!


nothinglefttouse t1_iyi5k93 wrote

Agreed - if someone is dx'ed with Alzheimers or dementia, they should be able to make the decision while they're still of sound mind. It's no different than a terminal cancer diagnosis.


AMC4x4 t1_iyid7dq wrote

I posted above that a member of the family had Alzheimer's for ten years. By the time the disease set in fully, she became the happiest person you ever wanted to see. Just loved going through her day to day guided activities at the center she was in. Really tough to think about someone like that going through assisted suicide. Dementia takes lots of different forms, for sure.