Pro-assisted suicide supporters and anti-assisted suicide supporters face off.
Supporters shun the term "suicide" because it carries a negative connotation. Should it still be considered suicide if you have a terminal illness?

In 1998, Oregon passed the Death With Dignity Act, becoming the first state to allow people with terminal illnesses to voluntarily end their lives. The process works like this: the patient consults a physician, who can then choose to write them a prescription for a lethal dose of medication. The patient takes the medication home, and can then choose to ingest the drug if their suffering becomes too much to bear. When it was first passed, there was great concern surrounding the application of the law. However, there has been no reported abuse, nor any major controversies. The most recent report from the Oregon Health Authority shows that in 2015, just 218 people received a prescription for lethal medication, and an even smaller number 132 actually chose to use it.

Since 1998, three more states have passed similar laws: Washington, California, and Vermont. Despite the increase, a fierce debate continues over the morality of the practice. In fact, it's so controversial that people can't even agree on what to call it supporters prefer the terms "death with dignity" and "physician-assisted dying", while opponents insist it be referred to as "assisted suicide". This disagreement is central to the debate itself, for it illustrates two different ways of looking at death.

Note: For the purposes of this article, we'll use the term "assisted suicide". Just to be clear, we're not taking a stance on the issue it's simply the most widely-recognized term.

Support for the LawA woman protesting in favor of assisted suicide.

Supporters argue that assisted suicide is not only an ethical practice, but that we have a moral obligation to present this option to terminally-ill patients. Many supporters have personal experience caring for a sick family member often someone who was in a lot of pain, and thus suffered greatly during a long, drawn-out period before finally passing away. It's not surprising that they advocate for assisted suicide these people have seen the traditional hospice method firsthand, and know that it can be traumatizing for everyone involved. Once death is imminent, they argue, a person should have the right to end their own suffering. That's why they call it "death with dignity" death comes on the patient's terms, before they become a shell of their former selves. Supporters shun the term "suicide" because it carries a negative connotation. Which also begs the question: should it still be considered suicide if you have a terminal illness?

A Growing Trend

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that the issue should be decided by the individual states, not by the federal government. While only four states have legalized assisted suicide, the legislation is under review in a handful of other states. This means we'll probably see some hard-fought political campaigns in the near future.

In June, Canada codified a law outlining physician-assisted suicide at the federal level. As with the laws in the United States, the Canadian law is very detailed about who can apply for the medication. Only adults who are fully informed about the law and the legalities of an assisted suicide are allowed to receive prescriptions. Unsurprisingly, it's been fairly controversial no everyone agrees that the policy is ethical.

Why It's Not So SimpleDisabled people protesting assisted suicide laws.

Opponents acknowledge the suffering people go through, but they offer a different argument: that assisted-suicide laws create a slippery slope. Although they currently only apply to terminally-ill patients, opponents envision a future where the laws are extended to include people with severe disabilities or other conditions that affect quality of life. In fact, many of the law's harshest critics are disabled people. They explain that the idea behind assisted suicide is incredibly demeaning to them, and all other people battling illnesses or disabilities. Essentially, they say, assisted suicide devalues human life. By passing laws that allow some people to commit suicide, it sends a message to others that perhaps their life is not worth living, either.

Church Beliefs and Assisted Suicide

A sign reading thou shalt not kill. Most faiths oppose assisted suicide based on the belief that life is a gift from God. Notable exceptions include two Christian groups: The United Church of Christ and the Unitarian Universalist Association both support the rights of terminally ill patients to make their own end-of-life choices. It's worth noting, too, that doctors have a choice whether or not to help patients with assisted suicide. In California, entire networks of doctors have decided not to participate. Faith-based healthcare providers were some of the first to opt-out.

No matter what a person's faith dictates, the reality of a terminal disease can be a powerful force. Suffering from a long-term illness can change the way a person views things. Sometimes those with strong religious beliefs decide to get the life-ending medication. This puts ministers and other family members in a tough position either disavow the decision, or accept that putting an end to the suffering may be the best outcome. What would you do? How can you offer support if you believe the decision is immoral?

**"On My Own Terms"


Betsy Davis, a California woman who chose assisted suicide.
Betsy Davis

Ultimately, supporters argue, the issue of assisted suicide comes down to personal freedom. When someone gets diagnosed with a terminal illness, they should have every option available to them. If they choose to fight the disease to the very end, they can only be admired for doing so. Often though, the last days can be quite ugly. They take a heavy toll on friends and family who will be burdened by the painful memories. If that person instead decides they want to end things on their own terms, peacefully, can anyone blame them?

Perhaps nobody better exemplifies this sentiment than Betsy Davis. The 41-year-old artist had been diagnosed with ALS in 2013, and her condition was rapidly deteriorating. So, this past July, she decided to end her life on her own terms with a social occasion. She invited all her friends and family over and spent the day with them. The only rule, she said, was "no crying". That evening, after watching one last California sunset, she took the life-ending medication. Betsy died shortly afterward.


This is obviously a difficult topic. Supporters of assisted suicide tell heart-wrenching stories, while opponents raise some valid moral objections. It's possible that assisted suicide is a slippery slope. However, it also seems unfair to make judgments if you haven't experienced such a situation personally. Times of grief and hardship strongly affect our opinions, and occasionally change them entirely.

There is an old Buddhist saying which goes: "without health life is not life; it is only a state of languor and suffering - an image of death".

Is there some truth to that statement? We'd like to hear your thoughts. Do terminally ill patients have the right to plan their own deaths? Is assisted suicide an ethical practice, or should it be outlawed?


  1. Ryan Palumbi's Avatar Ryan Palumbi

    It is my belief, that if a person is suffering then they should be allowed to choose how and when they die. Most people don't want their families to see them like that. Also, it would allow them to say their goodbyes to whomever they wish, prior to being assisted. In the end, we all find God, best to go in peace and not in pain.

    1. Richard Evans's Avatar Richard Evans

      The reality is that anyone at anytime can find a way to leave this Earth. This is a convenience offered to those to weak to do anything but ask for help. Unless you are in that situation. You have no opinion.

  1. Len DeSecottier's Avatar Len DeSecottier

    I don't want to be the phobic one, however, being a product of the 70's and not trusting government-my concern is what is next: forced termination of life for those who are terminally ill?

    1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

      I understand your concern. I would be worried about that too! One reason I won't put myself in anyone else's care...ill make my choice to go on my own terms unless a illness or accident takes me before.

      1. Bill's Avatar Bill

        no one shal take their own life.

        1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

          According to you...then don't but I am not ruled by you or anyone...

        2. Bob Anderson's Avatar Bob Anderson

          Says who? It's my life, not yours. I am the one who will bear the suffering, not you. You have no right to impede my decisions as regards my life. As a cancer patient, I celebrate the fact that when my time comes, the California Death with Dignity Act will be there, waiting for ME to decide what I want to do. If you disagree...don't opt to use it.

          1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

            I agree with Bob thank you

          2. Siji's Avatar Siji

            I agree w/Bob. We humanely put our ANIMALS to sleep kindly. We deserve the same SANE kindness for ourselves.

    2. Chris's Avatar Chris

      There has been a strictly controlled system of assisted euthanasia in the Netherlands (Holland) for some time. I shared the same fears as yourself until the past couple years. A friend - terminal and untreatable - chose assisted euthanasia. She was too ill to leave the hospice, but the medical physician set up the means where the patient can choose to administer the drug at their own time and choosing. It is similar to removing the cap on the self administration of morphine, the patient just clicks the button till they pass away in peace. I was staunchly against this process on the UK but now having lost two people who were in terrible suffering - provided the guidelines are clear, I appreciate the right of a dignified death and the general fears around it.

  1. I am Rev.Dr.Yanel J. Laroche Jr..And Priscilla the Chastity the female archangel in his soul.'s Avatar I am Rev.Dr.Yanel J. Laroche Jr..And Priscilla the Chastity the female archangel in his soul.

    Rev.Dr.Yanel J. Laroche Jr.: Do you have a terminal illness at all? What is assisted suicide that should fall from your heart if you are a Christian and stand tall? How can you be mentally ill or terminally ill if you apply the Holy Bible and do God's will? I believe that if you are terminally ill of mentally ill,you do not need medication including pills. I seriously believe you are possessed by wicked spirits if you are suicidal or mentally ill.

    Priscilla the Chastity:Why don't you pray to the true God called LORD and Jehovah in Psalm 83:16,18 I say, and tell Him you are possessed by wicked spirits night and day that are still giving you ideas of committing suicide in the U.S.A. I,Priscilla the Chastity,know that I read in the Holy Scriptures really that suicide is against the Holy Bible actually. You are not suppose to commit suicide if you love and praise God called LORD and Jehovah that is the Heavenly Father of Lord Jesus Christ in reality.

    1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

      lol....this kind of thinking is from the Stone Age! So you say cancer is a not bother to even try to educate you.

      1. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

        Actually Carol, you can call the Rev. Dr. directly if you'd like to hear a rhyme, or just to chat, actually. Priscilla the Chastity says he is "so drug free" actually so he may be a modern day prophet. If you're ever in Hollywood, Florida, you could meet them for a free meal at the Jubilee Center.

        1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

          Oh my goodness Brother John! Wow... after seeing that page I stand by my conclusion. I am sad really. I have meet folks like this man appears to be and its all very heart breaking. I will not attract him no his ideas. I simply can not join him in his reality.
          Thanks Brother John again for enlightening and sharing the page with me. Peace

    2. HeidiAnne Leon's Avatar HeidiAnne Leon

      Are you seriously saying that a person can't be mentally ill,if he or she applies the Holy Bible and do God's will. Do you really believe if the person is mentally ill, that they don't need medication and that the person is possessed by evil spirits? Please reply. Thanks and God bless.

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        I've worked as a Mental Health worker for 25 years and would never diagnose a person without having spent some time with them face-to-face however ... Every time I read a post that's been written by Rev.Dr.Yanel J. Laroche Jr. and Priscilla the Chastity, I get greatly concerned there's something not quite right about the way things are written here and the statement that somehow if a person is praying and reading the Bible that they would not have a mental illness or for that matter any type of illness seems to be delusional . That's only my opinion .

    3. Dr. David's Avatar Dr. David

      Rev. Daniel-

      You quote the Old Testament, but where is your example from the teachings of Christ, with citation? As a Christian the teachings of Christ come first and you should be quoting him, with citation please.

      Also, who are you to tell me what is right or wrong. Your beliefs are not everyone's beliefs and you should not be putting using your beliefs to condemn me.

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        No One has the right to tell you that David . And you're right read Daniel twists and turns everything to suit his agenda

    4. Bob Anderson's Avatar Bob Anderson

      I have never read such nonsense. Demons? Wicked spirits? What twisted perversion of religion delights in the suffering of others by refusing them release from their pain?

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        Bob obviously Reverend Daniel is the same kind of person that would tell a woman who is been raped that she did something to provoke it.

    5. William Orielly's Avatar William Orielly

      It's people like YOU who give religions a bad name... GET YOUR NOSE OUT OF MY OR ANYBODY ELSES BUSINESS!!.. you choose to believe in god... I find the whole idea ridiculously silly... so font go pushing your beliefs on me or anyone else.. I don't care what you do.. and you shouldn't care what I do... if I am terminally ill with a horrible disease I should be able to opt out of that suffering if I want to... I think you and your kind have got it ALL WRONG and that if a true loving god actually exists he would not want us to suffer and if he does want us to suffer then he is not worth believing in... religious zealots like YOURSELVES make me sick to my stomach!! Go preach to people who want to listen to your fables but don't go trying to force your outdated religitarded thinking onto the rest of us! BE KIND AND FREE THE MIND.

  1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

    I think this is an interesting subject on so many levels. I've made my mind up to end my life and not put the burden of caring for me on anyone. I'm caregiver for my father who has Parkinson's and dementia. He is 86 and still enjoys his life. I have made a commitment to him to do my best to insure his quality of life to the best of my ability. When my commitment to his is done I will have nothing and no one left. That's when I will be done as well. I've given all I have and really see no point going on after that.
    I'm not sad, or crazy I'm just not attached to this physical body. I don't need others to agree nor do I want anyone to take on my beliefs. It's y mind, body and soul! I'll do with it as I please.

    1. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

      Thank you for your honest comments, Carol. I've recently posted a blog that relates to this topic and have attached a link rather than pasting it here. I left this forum some time ago due to the rantings of several Christian fundamentalists (who seem to have disappeared).

      I can relate to your statement "I’m not sad, or crazy I’m just not attached to this physical body."

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        Thank you Brother John. I will read them. Peace

    2. Bob Anderson's Avatar Bob Anderson

      Dear sound neither sad nor crazy, but acutely aware of your innermost feelings. Should you make the decision to leave, go in peace.

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        Thank you Bob I appreciate that. And I pray peace be with you as well.

  1. George Worley's Avatar George Worley

    When our animals are terminally ill what do we do? We put them to "sleep." We give them the benefit of quality of life verses quantity of life. Why can't we have the same option? If I am suffering pain where I have no chance of a positive outcome please give me the option of death in peace and dignity.

    1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

      Compassionate answer George W.

    2. Nancy Caverly's Avatar Nancy Caverly

      Before you take your life try www.watercure2. I was bad off. Now am healthy I will pray for you

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        Shame on you for using this form to promote so called cures for profit

    3. kimmp's Avatar kimmp

      Exactly! We can give our animals death with dignity, why not people?

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        Agree I don't hold animals religious Standard

    4. Mr K's Avatar Mr K

      Amen brother !

  1. Minister Dave's Avatar Minister Dave

    That my dear friends should be up to that person. We can not nor should try to regulate death!

    1. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

      The for profit medical system would not agree with you, Dave, but I do.

      1. Dr. David's Avatar Dr. David

        Brother John it is up to the person with discussions from family and others like their spiritual counselor. It is not up to the insurers.

        1. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

          Dave…. my point was that the medical business does help individuals "regulate death" by postponing it with their intervention. The insurers play a significant role when the necessary treatments are expensive and on-going with their exemptions, co-pays and deductibles, not to mention outright uninsurability. Inter-family discussions about their ability to pay exorbitant medical expenses to prolong the life of loved member would be very uncomfortable at best, with or without a spiritual counsellor.

  1. Kurt Fondriest's Avatar Kurt Fondriest

    As a person who lives with severe fibromyalgia, chronic pain. I understand why people want to make an agreement "ON MY TERMS"quality of life is the main focus. I feel this approach is human and an Individual's right. It is by far not a easy , or should it be answer or solution. I think the humanistic rights need to be made more aware of to anyone involved with the quality of life questions. One needs people who demonstrate empathy. A primary physician who can help build the support setting. A quality of life therapist, a psychologist, clergy friends of most of all family. This quality of life approach I feel is becoming more known in the main stream consciousness. I know it will evolve as more people come forward who can assist others with these moral and ethical barriers.

  1. Gerald (Jerry) Gay's Avatar Gerald (Jerry) Gay


    As our world becomes more understanding of the universal nature of consciousness

    in reality, we begin to respect life and death as being equal in honoring our inner soul.

    Before we can accept our own opinion to end our life due to diverse medical / mental

    conditions or circumstances, we must stop for divine communication with Our Source /

    Force of Life that many refer to as God. NOW, together we will determine if we have

    completed our heart, mind and soul journey to fulfill our higher self and accomplish all

    our personal gestures to honor others. NOW we will explore how, when and where to

    conclude our life with respect, reverence and responsibility to God, family and friends.

    Everyone is unique with our beginning and ending being a declaration of who we are.

    1. Auntie M's Avatar Auntie M

      Lovely, Jerry, thank you.

  1. Tom's Avatar Tom

    An excellent topic! Even more than the subject of sex, the subjects of dying and death are conversational taboos in most societies. This is understandable, since so little is known about it. We know a great deal about dying, but we know absolutely nothing about death. We have no memories of an existence, if we had one, prior to our birth and only can hold some sort of hope for an existence after our dying. I suppose that is where a belief in a "creator" or supreme being has come into play. As such, these beliefs have directed most of our behaviors. Rewards or punishments reign supreme. We are taught that this life cannot be all there is. There must be something after, even if we cannot remember anything before. We are terrified of the unknown at either end of the spectrum of life. In most churches, the song is sung or said, "As it was in the beginning, it is now and ever shall be; world without end. Amen (which means so be it)". The hopes and fears of men live on. Just for a moment, let us take a God or a divine creator out of the equation. With that in mind, remember that none of us asked to be born. This happened because our parents performed an act that either intentionally or unintentionally resulted in our birth. Apparently we are then obligated to delegate the decision to end our lives to someone else. That could be physicians, medical providers, or even family members who feel it is time to "pull the plug". Somehow, from this viewpoint, life does not seem all that valuable, let alone sacred. I prefer to embrace something taught to me years ago. The only person I will have with me for my entire life is me. Everyone else, no matter how close or how distant, is merely along for a part of my ride. I may have them for a handshake, a day, a week, a month, a year or even decades. But the reality is that all relationships come to an end, even the relationship I have with myself. It is the way I live my life that is important, not how it began or how it ended. Until more is actually known about death and not conjectured through various belief systems, I will conduct my life on my terms. Thank you for allowing me to share these thoughts.

    1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

      Very well said! Thank you

    2. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

      I encourage you to read/research Ernest Becker's "The Denial of Death", Tom. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

    3. Paul Read's Avatar Paul Read

      Maybe a bit late in saying - but well said, you brought up some interesting thoughts. I'm sorry Tom, but I'd still catch you if you ever decided to jump..... Have a great day - Paul.

  1. Ryan Palumbi's Avatar Ryan Palumbi

    Very well said Sir!

  1. Paul Read's Avatar Paul Read

    Good morning Carol,

    I say good morning as everyday after my dark period is good. I am not terminally ill or anything like that, but if I was I could agree with terminating my life, so that there wouldn't be a reason to go down a bad road. But for those who choose to take their lives as they are going through a dark time, I say, think how it will affect not you, but others around you. Please think of others before yourself and in doing so, you may, like me, have a better life (presently unknown to you), around the corner. Life can be good. I certainly send out my love and wishes for a better future to all those considering suicide. As they say, make this day the first day to the rest of your life! Please be happy - Paul x

    1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

      Hello and thank you Paul Read. How very kind hearted of you to take time to be an encouragement. I know it's really hard for people to get their head around it but I don't see any difference between mental or emotional suffering and the kind of suffering that's brought about by some kind of physical illness .
      I also understand that when someone has been depressed and comes through that depression to find some inspiration because of medication feels better it's difficult for them to except that some others might not have that experience .

      I'm not advocating of this for everyone and I have been a mental health professional for over 25 years and witnessed many people go through as you say periods of darkness and come out the other side. What I am saying is that for me I'm choosing not to go down a road of suffering because I believe that I have suffered enough. Whether it be that my body begins to break down and betrayed me or that at some point my mind cannot find any good reason to continue this physical existence I will choose the when the where in the how to let go.

      As for my loved ones I don't make it a secret. it's a conversation that I've been having little by little for a long time. My friends children and adult grandchildren know how I feel on the subject. My 23-year-old grandson said to me, I don't necessarily like it but I haven't lived your life and I don't know exactly how you feel so I'm not going to judge and I'll just say that I will miss you Nana.

      It's not something I'm planning to do tomorrow I have a job to do right now my father is 86 years old has Parkinson's and dementia is recovering from a fall and learning how to walk again. I gave up everything I had left in my life to come and care for him and make sure that he doesn't end up in one of those dreadful old nursing homes and assure that he can live out the rest of his life as long as he is continuing to be joyful about having a life, in his home. It's probably the hardest thing I've ever had to deal with. As I have been visiting him in the rehabilitation home I'm looking at the people who are basically just a shell waiting for that last breath to come. This has convinced me even more but that is not the way I want to go out. I feel that life is for living with joy, and being able to give and take and have purpose. My ability to enjoy life is extremely small. I pretty much take the days by minute hour by hour doing what I need to do to ensure that my dad is comfortable and safe. But when this job is done and he is left this earth I will good be faced with the decision do I see anything worth staying for or do I let go. I resent the fact that anyone thinks that they have the right to tell me what I canning can't do in regards to my own body . Again I thank you for taking the time to share and I'm really happy that you found your way through your dark places and that you see like right now.
      Peace and blessings

      1. HeidiAnne Leon's Avatar HeidiAnne Leon

        Hi Carol.Wow, your Dad became a great grandfather early. I'm do sorry that he is suffering with Parkinson's . I think you are a wonderful daughter and a great human being.Blessings and hugs.

        1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

          Thank you HeidiAnne I'm doing the best I can with what I have but believe me between jobs challenges I do lay my head down at night and asked for my last breath to come as a sleep

          1. Paul Read's Avatar Paul Read

            I can see by the way you write Carol that you are well educated and therefore appear to understand exactly what is going on around you. I to will be looking after my father, as he's 84 and he will come and live in my house in a year from now. He says that he's in 'Gods waiting room', which is an interesting thought. I certainly hope that you find a good reason to live after your father passes away, as although I agree with suicide (in certain cases), I hope you find peace in whatever decision you come to. Do what makes you happy, don't just come to a suicide conclusion without deciding what you would like to achieve before you leave this life. Make a bucket list of all the things you always wished to do and try them - you have nothing to lose. Make a decision to help (as you do with your father), others around you and spoil them, you will find happiness in seeing their faces light up. You are not alone or an island, carry on talking to those around you and don't be a stranger. I do wish you a long and happy wonderful life Carol. Please take care, as I'm thinking of you - Paul x

            P.S. Do try to watch the old film 'It's a wonderful life'.

          2. HeidiAnne Leon's Avatar HeidiAnne Leon

            I just want you to know, that if you decided to end your life, even though we never met in person i would miss you. I know it's your life, but your Grandson would miss you very much. I know that I miss my wife who committed suicide in 2000.

    2. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

      A friend of mine was put under the care of a psychiatrist at 14 years old because of concerns voiced by his parents and school that he was "anti-social" and "depressed". The psychiatrist that was referred concluded he was suffering from "body chemistry imbalances" and prescribed an ever changing mix of medications to correct the imbalance. Uppers in the morning, downers at night, including Elavil to "alter his dream patterns". Usually between 6-8 different medications on a daily basis. I knew him both when he was taking "his meds" and after he quit them. It was a dramatic transformation. From virtual zombie to human being that didn't fit the clinical definition of normal. His advice to me was to never, under any circumstances, allow a psychiatrist to treat anyone you care about.

      I'm not assuming medication was the answer for you Paul, but it is for tens of millions of people who aren't happy enough for those around them. I've attached two articles regarding the widespread use of psychotropic drugs.

      The information in this study linked below is shocking….. scroll down and notice how many children are being drugged with parental consent on the advice of their "medical professional". If you or anyone you know is currently using or has been prescribed "antidepressants", do some serious research, including the thorough reading of the possible side effects (available on the sidebar).

      1. Paul Read's Avatar Paul Read

        Thanks for the post John, It was very interesting to find out that prescription drugs are the cause of more deaths every year in the US than those resulting from crack cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin combined. When it said that medication is like a cast, it doesn’t heal a broken bone, it holds it in place, I feel that's right. But if like me someone was overworked and suicidal isn't better to hold them in place, until they are able to truly understand the problem and their way out - before ending it. I was put on antidepressants and they worked for me and I was able to cope with my work load. I appreciate that they may not work for everyone, but why not try them if you're going to kill yourself anyway? I do feel sorry for your friend however and I hope he's doing well. Paul.

  1. Paul R Walsh's Avatar Paul R Walsh

    I truly feel that if a person is terminally ill they should be allowed to end their suffering through assisted suicide, what "Quality of Life" is there when a person is hooked up to machines that are keeping them alive.

  1. Denise's Avatar Denise

    Thinking of death and dying - we all commit suicide - we end our life. The time, method and involvement of others has all been planned before we arrived on this planet. It might not have been what we who remain wished for but nonetheless the one who chose to leave did so far in advance. Those who are dying from a disease - same thing - they have a reason for going through their pain and discomfort and it may even be something they do for you! Helping them in whatever way may just be a part of their plan.

  1. Deb's Avatar Deb

    Let me start by saying I very much believe in God and in my personal savior Jesus Christ. Having said that, at the end of my days, I have to answer for my own actIons. I alone. I believe, you alone as well. If there is a reward to be had for living a good life, I alone will benefit. I have made all those choices from between my birth to whatever the circumstances are of my death. I alone am responsible. I alone will benefit.

    It is the nature of our life that we are alone. The choice belongs to us as individuals. It is not a choice of others. It is not A choice of governments or countries. It is personal. It is purely personal. It should remain so.

    We should be clear. We're not talking about IF. people can commit suicide. We're talking about how. There will never be a shortage of bridges or guns or other means. They will always be available.

    We're talking about compassion. We're talking about not forcing someone to look down at the rocks and know that They have to smash themselves against them to stop the pain. We're talking about allowing them to control their ow ebb and flow. We're talking about not forcing them to our own religious places. We're talking about allowing them their own religious convictions.

    In the end,I believe, I answer for my choices. I choose not to die for now. For me. In answer to my beliefs.

    I want that choice for everyone.


  1. judy diedrich's Avatar judy diedrich

    When my mom could not breath without coughing, but had her full mind and could walk. My sister agreed to send her to hospice and let her lay in a bed for 10 days without food and water. Only copious amount of drugs "to keep her comfortable" Those were the worst 10 days of my life!! If people choose to pass with a little dignity, let them make that choice. We are NOT their judge to say it was wrong or right. Nor have we endured the pain and suffering. My Mom was not asked if that is what she was ready to do. It just happened. I say 'GO IN PEACE

    1. kimmp's Avatar kimmp

      If your mom had her full mental facilities but was not given the choice, that was wrong and hospice should have known better than to carry through. But if it was her choice, then that is that. If your mom was alert, did she not say anything to anyone when she first went in to hospice that this was NOT her choice?

  1. Paul R Walsh's Avatar Paul R Walsh

    I think that the laws allowing PAS { Physician Assisted Suicide} should be passed in all 50 states, we are given the freedom to live our lives the way we see fit, we should have the same option when the time comes for us to pass on.

  1. Bob Anderson's Avatar Bob Anderson

    It was Dr. Kevorkian who first brought assisted suicide to the forefront and he paid dearly for his acts of compassion. I sincerely hope that one day a statue will be raised in his honor.

  1. Mr K's Avatar Mr K

    It took my mom 5weeks to die in a Catholic hospital after food was withheld and the morpheine drip slowly increased, this is known as passive assisted suicide vs. active assisted suicide which would have ended it in just a few minutes had one lethal dose been given. It was quite agonizing for family and friends to watch her slow death. The end result is the same either way, I would have preferred one lethal dose to bring it to a quick end and I think she would have also, but she was comatose after a bad brain hemmorage and had no say in the matter. What do you think"Jesus would have done" in this situation ?

  1. lifewalkblog's Avatar lifewalkblog

    I totally support the right to die with dignity. I do believe, once the desire is expressed, there need to be a waiting period. People often feel like "ending it" with the initial revelation of a possibly fatal or debilitating illness. But, like my wife who had breast cancer, some overcome and live happy healthy lives. But if it is rationally and reasonably determined that death is the best option, then that choice should be allowed. Obviously, ending one's life IS one's own decision. It's the "assisted" part that's at issue here.

    1. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

      Agreed that it's the "assisted" part that's the issue, lifewalkblog. It would be both awkward, and potentially incriminating, to ask for assistance to end one's life.

  1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

    Paul Read and HeidiAnne Leon, You have touched my heart and soul. The sweet kindness and tender mercy the two of you show is something so rare. People like you make breathing worth it.

    1. HeidiAnne Leon's Avatar HeidiAnne Leon

      What you wrote to me Carol, touched my heart and soul so much, that words don't seem adequate to tell you how you made me feel. I'm so sorry about your Dad. You are a special person. Blessings and hugs.

      1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

        Your welcome and Thank You HeidiAnne Leon. Peace

        1. Paul Read's Avatar Paul Read

          Good morning Carol, Wasn't it so sad to hear how HeidiAnne lost her wife through suicide. How she is coping everyday is a wonder of which no one should have to experience. I only hope that you will see how broken other people can become with the loss of a loved one. You're a hero looking after father as you do, but you'll break your grandsons heart if he was to lose you, in the long run, as well. I hope you're feeling loved as this is an important item in anyone's life. If this is the case do try and spend more time with friends and family. Don't shut yourself away from others around you, take a big breath and get out there. Everyday has something new to offer you, some days are good and at the moment, a lot of days are bad. But you're still here and you're living your life no matter what. As Elton John sang 'I'm still standing........' If you can look after yourself, as you look after your father - you will survive these future days. Look in the mirror - exclaim 'Bring it on!' - Laugh at yourself - Spoil yourself - Enjoy yourself. I do wish you so much happiness in the future. Life is a gift - unwrap it and use it. Love and a big smile & hug to you - Paul x

          1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

            Paul, It's very sweet if you to take the time to encourage me. I agree that I have a few sweet souls in my life that would be sad and miss me. I do care very much how others feel. I am trying to figure out a way to continue for a while after dad is gone. If I am able to be independent, healthy enough to to care for myself, clear minded enough to find some joy in life and have the finances to sustain myself and not need to depend on others then I will go on until or unless disease takes me.
            I'm just not willing to put any burden on others.
            Peace and blessings...hugs back to ya

          2. HeidiAnne Leon's Avatar HeidiAnne Leon

            Thank you so much for your compassion Paul. I am now married to a wonderful man. I do miss my wife so much, especially when I want to share with her how wonderful my son is. When i first told my son that I was bisexual and explained what it meant,he was 11. he was so happy for me stating that because of this, I won't ever be lonely, because I have more of an opportunity to find someone if my present person whom I was involved with passes away. my son now is almost 15 1/2 and is in a group called the Gay, Straight,Transgender,Alliance. He is in it for the second year in a row. He called me on the anniversary of gay marriage being legal in all 50 states and was so happy and said if I wanted to marry a woman after my husband passes now it would be legal where live. He and the group attended a Pride Parade a few towns away from he lives; a day before the horrible mass killings at the Pulse night club. He called me the night of the killings and we cried together on the phone. MY son is also an ally for the transgender community and will gladly stand by and keep the individual safe if the person needs to use the rest room. Any way, God bless you Paul. Hug hug

  1. Maiane santo santos's Avatar Maiane santo santos

    It's suicide, I don't care how you phrase it, people want to give it a fancy name, suck it up, it still is killing yourself, another thing why hasn't Stephen Hawking followed through with this, if ever a person shows a reason to end it he does.

    1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

      It's call freedom of choice maiane santos Santos! Mr Stephen Hawking has chosen to live with his affliction . I would never ever wish someone who had a disability or a disease or disorder painful or not to somehow be put to death because It! On the other hand I don't want anyone telling me that I have to stay alive when I choose not to.
      I believe that every adult individual has a right to make that decision for themselves.

  1. Christopher Holloway's Avatar Christopher Holloway

    Firstly I believe that there would be two different but equally valued sides of this discussion here! The first side of this moral debate would be "What does God say about suicide?" Is it morally wrong and religiously wrong? And the second side would come from people, the more human side of the coin per se. Both are valued and justly important but when one comes to answer a question about morals and life and death I would be unable to answer it in a "human" perspective and would place it more on the moral side. As a Muslim, my belief is all life is important and is a gift from God. The thought of killing another human being is firstly a grave sin in Islam and secondly, I could not even fathom the idea of murdering myself to remove a pain. As a person who've been through high amounts of personal pain, both in the physical and mental side, I never once even thought of killing myself to relieve the distress of life. God loves me and I always knew that. So I have to ask the people who would actually debate about going through with this suicide, are you Christian or Muslim which denotes the value of life or an atheist or another faith where it's more of a pick and choose attitude of wrong and right?

    1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

      I chose not to clam any denomination or lable my beliefs. I don't answer to doctrine.

  1. Sandy Jabo Prajna Gougis's Avatar Sandy Jabo Prajna Gougis

    Can we get a little fact checking please?

    Your so-called Buddhist quote is a fake. It's by François Rabelais from the “Author’s Prologue” to the fourth book of Gargantua and Pantagruel.

    One wonders if you would have made such a casual mistake with the Bible.

  1. Brother John's Avatar Brother John

    I did a search and the overwhelming consensus is that this is a quote from Buddha (I couldn't find a citation). Either it was plagiarized by Rabelais or the vast majority of sources are all wrong.

  1. Rev. Don's Avatar Rev. Don

    This a lively topic, no pun intended, and one filled with much uncertainly. However, the God of love could not have intended for us to suffer beyond our ability to bear, nor would he hold us to Eternal damnation for easing our extreme suffering by ending it by our own hand. If He truly directs our actions, it is by His will that we act. I feel certain that our God intends for us to leave this world with dignity, as a way of celebrating the life which He gave to us. There is no shame in ending terminal suffering by ones own hand. We are acting as an agent for Our Lord.

    IMHO. Reverend Don the Revalator

  1. eliud colbath's Avatar eliud colbath

    The ten commandments are the foundation of moral code and legal system of justice in western civilization.Deuteronomy 5:17 You shall not kill.Deutoronomy 4:13 states that God wrote the ten commandments. THEREFORE IT APPLIES TO ALL christians.Depending on what you believe is, the decision you will make.If you believe in the word of God,you will die suffering.Ofcourse ,YOU CAN BE KEPT COMFORTABLE WITH MEDICATION.To assist someone on a quick death is wrong in the eyes of God.This act is killing. To kill yourself is also wrong,if you believe in Gods command,not to kill.The Bible states that there is a time for every thing,and one of them is suffering.Our lord Jesus Christ suffers.His act was to save us.There were no quick fixes then.Suffering is a part of life. No matter what type of suffering.It will always exist.Its important to know that God wrote these in two tablets.He wrote the Comandments.Having said that, I am not in your shoes.This decision will be up to you and your God.May God bless you and may your pain be lessened in following his word.

  1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

    Bible thumper agree....however many of use are not Christian so are not inclined to worry over hell or a hateful non-murcyful God. I'm sorry for people who's fear of a vengeful god causes them to suffer more than they should.

  1. eliud colbath's Avatar eliud colbath

    Whenever your time comes I guess you won't fear.However since you agree with me I really hope you go out and teach Gods word so they can worry like the rest of us.Do you wonder if our Lord Jesus Christ feard or not ,or was he doing his will when he was suffering and dying for us.Gods will is what he was doing.He was faithful son.What I wrote was from my heart.If you read the last part of what I wrote.I wrote that whatever you decide is between you and your God.God bless you my sister.

  1. Carol Amina's Avatar Carol Amina

    Eliud colbath, You seem to be a gentle soul. I am as well. I don't believe in the "god" of the Christian bible, and see Jesus as a teacher the same as Buddha, and Mohammad. Along with many other spiritual guides. I think there teachings have been twisted and taken out of context by men who wish to control people. I thank you for your blessing and wish you peace and good health.

  1. eliud colbath's Avatar eliud colbath

    GOD BLESS YOU TO CAROL.Please dont let man get in the way of your faith.I'm not a religious man but I do believe in Christ.I believe in his word. HE IS THE WORD OF THE True God.What is happening today is what Christ professor.There will be false prophets. A great man once said,there's a sucker born every minute. MANY people follow this prophets.The are lead because they don't read the word.If people were not ignorant to the word,They would know if the word coming out of this man or woman werefrom the spirit of God.My dad did not believe in man.When he was dying his last words were,I don't believe in man.I believe in God.God bless you my sister.

  1. Paul R Walsh's Avatar Paul R Walsh

    I feel that in Democratic society we should have the right to end our suffering as we fit.

  1. Auntie M's Avatar Auntie M

    I am glad to see this discussion.

    There are so many endeavors humans participate in, but are hesitant to discuss.

    Some joyful--orgasms. Some disgustful--bowel eliminations. Some anethma--canabalism. Some simply uncomfortable, awkward or embarrassing.

    But I believe that silence regarding taboo topics empowers their darker elements.

    This is not to say, "Let's discuss skin rashes over dinner," but rather, as spiritual beings, let us not shy away from, nor shirk, any imaginabilty.

    Having said all that, to the specific point of assisted suicide, I will say this :

    I dread the day I may ask someone to help me die, or they may ask me. But should either moment present itself, I hope dignity, courage and love will fill that moment, however it transpires.

    We all will die. When and how maynot be our choice, but given choices, let us choose compassion and love.

    1. Auntie M's Avatar Auntie M

      Btw, people have been kiling themselves and others all along. Legality is moot.

      1. Auntie M's Avatar Auntie M

        Ethically is in my evaluation, subjective.

        Love to all.

  1. Richard Williams's Avatar Richard Williams

    As I retired from the U.S.Airforce a few years ago; My Parkinson's Disease had already started me on a downward spiral. Add that on to what I now have along side the Parkinson's is MSA ( Multiple Symptom Atrophy). Both together devastate me physically. There isn't a day that goes by in which I am not in an infinite amount of physical pain. To keep going and to be able to accomplish my daily life I take approximately 42 pills a day in various medicines. I see at least two doctors a week at times when I would rather be laying down resting. Through all that I go through daily, I can say there are a number of factors that keep me following the path of least resistance and letting myself pass on. One is my Faith in Spirit, family, friends, and those I council and assist with their own daily pains and in need of personal assistance. I do believe a person has the right to end things on their own terms with dignity, honor, and respect.

  1. Rashid's Avatar Rashid

    I celebrate the fact that our government is slowely coming around to allowing humanity and compassion in the life and death decisions of the indiviual affected.

    The suffering can be devistating not only for the individual but for the family and friends. Sometimes family are unwilling to let go and choose to continue life support which ultimately has no better of an outcome and only leads to more pain and suffering.

    I support the person's decission to end his or her own suffering. I also support those who must assist in administering those medications as some people may not be able to do it alone. Some issues may arise though, whether the medication was taken freely or forced. For those that cannot take it on their own... I recommend several witnesses present at the moment it is taken.

    I do, however, struggle with the biblical aspect of suicide in this matter. Personally, It would be a tough decission to make. To have to out weigh the pain vs biblical ramifications of suicide is a matter that an individual must face.

    While I don't think I could make the decission to end my life... I am happy that if the time arrises, the decission to end my suffering is available.

  1. Christian's Avatar Christian

    Assisted Suicide is a logical fallacy. It is like saying you are a little pregnant.

    You are pregnant or you are not pregnant.

    Suicide is murdering one's Self. No one helps you with that.

    Hospice services can offer restful pain medications, or delightful drugs to make the dying process less suffering.

    If the person wants to sleep their way to the afterlife that is their personal choice.

    But at no time should patients expect Life Giving Health Care wirkers to Execute them. That is a job for law enforcement or military combatants !

    If a person of sound mind fills out their DNR forms and requests pain management while they die - by all means help ease them.

    But no executions.

    Assisted becomes Expected then demanded then manditory.

    The lessions of the horrific crimes of the Eugenics criminals murdering their patients should already have demonstrated this obvious truth.

    Hospice & Pain management, zero executions.

  1. Liz Dix's Avatar Liz Dix

    This is a true story: I prayed every day and sometimes more than 3 times a day for my 98 yrs old mom to die. I did this for two month before it happened. My mom pretty much have up on loving about 2 years before her body did. She could only care for herself about enough to sit up. My brother and sister and I were talking about assisted living for her at the time. She was driving me into a prolonged stay in rehab. The point is, my mom was for most of her life a strong, dignified, intelligent, and caring person. The only thing she had left was bite and pieces of her dignity. My prayer was that she would die before she lost all of her dignity. She was not screaming in pain, not on narctics. Would she had opted out if she thought she could and still get to heaven. I think she would have, they was nothing left out of her many friends her bbf did the year before (@ 97), mom buried 2 good, and faithful husbands, 2 of 5 children, two brothers, they spouses and several nieces and nephews. So I say the Creator gives you the Nod about rejoining heaven (if that's your drink) or having your energy returned to the source., if you are indeed ready then I give you my blessing.. May the Angels and other Spirits guide you to your Final Path.

  1. James's Avatar James

    In the USA (and other worlds) the FDA states "ONLY A DRUG CAN PREVENT OR CURE" < --- This mentality of focusing on non-natural remedies as a way to mask symptoms is not the healthy path. Headaches are not form an aspirin deficiency. If there were more natural paths and spiritualism instructors in the world that WERE covered under government run medical plans there would be less suffering when / if the time come near. The current medical system is all about the $$$. It's a form of slow murder as all these companies get immunity from defective products.

  1. Liz Dix's Avatar Liz Dix

    I do agree; after all the ending of resistance in this world is a terminal affair. It is no matter who you are, what you are or where. As much as I loved my mom however I could never had helped her. I do definitely think The Divine calls you and you go. How you leave sometimes is up to you.

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