euthanasia

/ posted in: General

I am a strong believer in euthanasia. I’m sure I think about this more than most people because discussing it with people is an important part of my job. I know that we start out discussing animals but most of the time the discussion moves to the topic of human euthanasia.

In the seven years that I’ve been a vet I’ve only had one person who expressed an opinion say that he thought human euthanasia would be a bad idea. Most of the time people remark about how peaceful it is and how they would like to be able to die like that.

My grandmother- in-law had a series of strokes about a year ago. Since that time she’s been unable to talk or to eat. She’s fed through a stomach tube. On a ‘good day’ she opens her eyes. I never want to be made to live that way. With animals we have the option to not let them suffer. Why don’t we have that with people?

I don’t buy into any of the ‘sanctity of life’ arguments. Is life so precious that it must be extended at any cost? I use ‘quality of life’ when talking to owners of sick animals. When can they not do the things that they enjoy? I tell people at there will be a point when you know that it is time to let go.

When my grandfather went into a coma my grandmother was given the option to withhold food, which she did. How can that possibly be more humane than an injection?

My husband is horrified by his grandmother’s condition. He’s told me over and over to kill him if he is ever in that position. He keeps telling me that he knows I know how to do it so he doesn’t want to hear any excuses. I told him that I would go to jail but he told me that I’d be a little old lady at the time and they’d take pity on me. Hopefully, by the time we would be in this situation we would have more humane options.