Quote: Originally Posted by damngrumpy
It comes down to an individual thing, the person was alive and you were a family member
Imagine if you were the one who under our law pulled the feeding tube and watched a
family member starve to death? That would have implications too wouldn't it especially
for the living. It would also be a serious situation if you requested "shoot me" for example.
My mother fell seriously ill for nearly two decades, for that last eight years she had to live
in a home, my father was too old to care for her alone. Every day of those eight years he
spent at the home from 9am to 6pm caring for her every need. Not once did he think of
shortening that journey.
Dedication has its own reward and that comes from the inner spirit of the person who is
caring for a loved one. The people who cared for this woman must have had the ultimate
vision of compassion perhaps something we can all learn from
And at the same time, I saw my grandmother avoid telling anybody she was having a stroke for days because she knew she would never come back out of the hospital (after already having a series of them and a heart attack here and there) and was only taken to the hospital after my grandfather could see a number of signs that something was wrong, even when she told him she was fine.
She spent two weeks in the hospital on life support with a tube down her throat and loaded up on drugs.... something she didn't want. Of course my father's side of the family are Roman Catholic and don't believe in "Assisted Suicide" & that you need to stay alive no matter what (when in reality and in her case, it would have been natural causes that caused her death and God's Will) and human intervention took over.
I went back to my home town from Halifax after hearing what was going on and I walked in to see everybody just standing around quiet.... they woke her up for me to say hi (or goodbye I suppose) and she looked me right in the eyes & raised her head to try and say something and everybody around me just told her to relaxed, try not to use too much energy and go back to sleep.... she just gave up against the drugs and went back to sleep.
Of course if anybody wanted to know the damn truth, they would have given her a pen and paper to write something since her hand was free and able to function.... funny how nobody thought to do that for her to communicate.
My grandfather was devastated by the situation and me being younger than I am today, surrounded by my older generation of parent / uncles and aunts, I didn't think it was my place to say or do anything, but I could tell in her eyes that she wanted this to end.... she obviously didn't want to be in that position in the first place or else she wouldn't have kept her condition a secret for so long and hoped for it all to end while she was at home where she belonged.
After it was coming up to two weeks they had no choice but to take her off life support to see if she would survive on her own or not, because by that time the damage from the machines would have been irreversible anyways.
And she died.
To this very day I regret not saying anything to the rest of my family or to try and get some communication from my grandmother so they could hear her wishes. Though, chances are they wouldn't haven listened anyway.
Grumpy, while I know that situation you told was difficult for all who was involved and while I can completely agree that there are "Implications for the Living"..... It's not about them, it's not about making those around the sick person feel good about themselves, it's about what is best for the sick person and whether or not you can do good by them in the long run.
Making yourself feel bad and making a difficult decision, imo, is a great sacrifice of your own in that you're willing to make such a decision for their betterment, at the expense of hurting yourself.
But every situation is different.... the situation I experienced was not the one you described, nor was it the situation my Grandfather or his children experienced.... mine was my own, thus I can only speak for my own.
As you said..... it's an Individual Thing.