It’s your choice

Rachel Johnson, writer

Knowing the date of your death but not having any control over the situation is a definition of terrifying. Most people live in ignorant bliss of their impending and inevitable death. This is not the case for terminally ill patients. Doctors dole out a certain number of months before a disease mercilessly kills the patient.

Choosing to end your life because you are in incredible amounts of pain is never going to be a comfortable topic; in fact, it is downright taboo in today’s society. Assisted suicide is for people with under six months to live and who know those months will be either be filled with medicine or pain. They will not be spending their last days with laughter and happiness with their family. Watching a family member spend their lives sitting in a bed in slowly dying while knowing their fate is no way to live.

There needs to be respect in knowing the limitations of the human body. The last moments of someone’s life should be decided by them. If that person personally can endure the pain to spend more time with loved ones, then that is his or her decision. Their life is in their own.

Quality of life should be valued over the longevity of a life. Six states in the U.S. authorize medical professionals to provide aid in dying. This adds to several countries that allow the option for all its citizens. These are valid for those individuals, but this does not mean assisted suicide should be inaccessible for others.

In 2013, only 122 Oregon patients were prescribed the lethal medication, but only 73 people choose to go through with euthanasia. Assisted suicide would only be an option. Switzerland had has had the

Yes, miracles exist. This does not discredit people who decide that dying peacefully is best for them. The course of life is not set in stone. The heartbreak of learning you have six months to live is unimaginable from a healthy person’s point of view. Living your last days doped up to ease the pain is not the way most people would want to be remembered.

I do see the inner conflict of doctors administering the drugs to kill a patient. They have taken the Hippocratic Oath to never do harm. What if in refusing the patient the right to die, they risk the harm is leaving a patient to suffer for months in pure agony? Medicine is the clear option to cease all pain. But there is a cost to spending your last few days dazed and unable to talk to your relatives. The people considering ending their life are not doing so lightly. It is a medical decision to end their life.