The right to live.. and perhaps the right to pass.

Something controversial. why not

Recently the British Columbia’s Supreme Court (British Columbia is one of Canada’s Provinces), ruled that the Criminal Code that ban physician-assisted suicide are unconstitutional.  The lady that launched this case has been granted a constitutional exemption to seek a doctor assisted passing, when she is ready, with some conditions. 

There is so much to this topic, the more you ponder it the more you see how much depth it has.

We have the right to live, do we have the right to leave as well? 

I am unsure where to start. I am not going to give an opinion. 

The waning days are often filled with such misery for some. The quality of life is such that there is none, pain is high, unbearable. There is no hope… Should this be allowed?

But who decides?

The Doctor? I am not sure that would be a decision that I would like to make. Oh the Doctor may feel that relieving the torment is a blessing. 

but probably not each time it may be required. So who decides?

Watching a loved one in the final days, that may extend to so much more than just a few, each day filled with terrible pain and torment. It is so sad. 

Life is precious. We only get one. 

but is it life at this point?

where is the line drawn? pain, humiliation? costs to family? just giving up?

who decides?

will each one require a legal battle to further add to the misery and costs of the family and individual? 

Becoming yet another public viewing at a time where you just want to be alone?

Is this something that politicians should be allowed to play with? 

Why would they have the right to make these decisions?  What do they know about it?

No matter which way it goes, there will be some that are for and against. Judging each case on its own could be a solution, but who would do that? Who would be willing to be put in that position time after time. Saying yes, you are basically taking a life, saying no, you are possibly extending someones unbearable pain. 

It is a sad topic I think, as there are no easy answers. It becomes more complex the more you look at it.

My heart goes out to the lady that has just gone through this, and is now becoming so many headlines.  She said in a statement last week that the decision allows her to approach death the same way she’s tried to live her life – with dignity, independence and grace.


About sensuousamberville

I am a Practitioner, teacher and student. I think we should always be students, we should keep our minds open, to continue to learn. :-) Now a mother of two little ones.

3 responses »

  1. cgfarmerhayloft

    This is indeed a very touchy subject. I was following the story as well on the news. I not only work with “end of life” patients but I have also had to sit and watch my dad suffer from cancer and eventually die.

    Where I work it is a blessing to see some pass on as they have suffered, have Alzheimer’s, are tube fed, etc. I have also seen many patients with cancer -some will go fast, others suffer for long periods of time.

    Watching my dad was tough and he often would look at me and say “I wish I would just die” and at that moment if I had a magic pill to give to him, I probably would have. Day after day I would go visit and the day he died I was by his side holding his hand and am thankful I was able to watch how peaceful he went. I miss him like mad but at the same time am very relieved he is no longer in pain.

    I think one would have to really be in rough shape and in lots of pain to even consider asking for assisted suicide. I wish her the best of luck in whatever may happen from here on in. It really shouldn’t be up to the public to judge, but as you say there will always be opinions on the pros and cons.

    Thanks for bringing this sensitive subject to light!

    Have a great day amber!

    Country Gal

    • I think in many cases, having someone with you makes the difference. Suffering alone.. well it is easier to just give in. If there is someone you see, someone to visit, well there is a bit of hope each day, so you battle your pain for those moments.

      So many are alone though. So there is no one to pass along their wishes or hold their hand, offer comfort and show love.

      I know how hard it was for you with your Dad. To watch that is so saddening, frustrating, but you offered him so much CG, him knowing you would be there and show your love, offering those moments. *nods*

      You will know more than most, how many don’t have anyone to visit, hold their hand, share a memory. For those I think it is easier to give up.

      *Hugs you tight*

      You have a great day too CG


  2. Katie (transplanted)

    Where I live the states have an End-of-life law. It allows for physician assisted end of life care. The physicians are not the one that perform is left to the individual … though I believe assistance can be granted to allows someone else to help.

    The decision has to be made from the patient, and the patient must be judged to be competent and understand the choice they are making. If I understand correctly, the quality of life and the terminal nature of the situation is similar to what Amber has stated.

    Do politicians get to decide if a person is granted this route? Individually I think no. However, whether right or wrong, states can set laws into place restricting or easing this practice.

    Does a doctor decide? No … I think many doctors would have an opinion, but for legal issues. I believe doctors could give options available and the consequences (both in choosing to live or die) .. and can help to make the patient as comfortable as possible in whatever choice is made.

    Family members? Spouse? Appointed other? I suspect if the patient has their mental faculties still …it would fall to them. If they are not able to make the decision themselves due to the situation (coma, etc), then if there is a legal document allowing this…then I can see this being ok.

    Should a person be allowed to say … “No more?”

    I agree that there are many on both sides of the debate …. and on both sides are those that have watched their loved ones suffer…

    I know if I am ever in that situation I would like the choice to be mine.


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