Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Grief and suffering associated with death by euthanasia.

Alex Schadenberg
Executive Director - Euthanasia Prevention Coalition

I received a call from a woman who was seeking help to deal with the grief associated with the euthanasia death of her grandfather. 

Her grandfather's death was approved by two doctors in-spite of the fact that he was not dying. He requested euthanasia because his health conditions led him to become disabled. 

She offered to care for her grandfather, but he refused.

I am not a medical professional, but grief after the death of a family member is normal. If her grandfather had died by suicide or homicide grief counselors would treat her pain and suffering in a serious manner. Since her grandfather died by euthanasia (a legal homicide) she was told that "it was his choice" and "if she loved him she would be supportive."

She sought help from counselors but they refused to speak about euthanasia.

She told me that no one was willing to help her deal with her grief and suffering because her grandfather died by euthanasia and that she is expected to "be happy for him."

I asked her to write about her experience. There are no easy answers to extreme grief, but to write it out and acknowledge her pain may bring some healing. I also told her that she can talk to me about it. I do not claim to be a counselor but I understand her pain.

Her grandfather died by a legal killing and whether he asked for it or not, her grandfather was abandoned. He felt that his life was not worth living and two doctors not only agreed they lethally injected him. They couldn't use the excuse that he was dying anyway, in his case they must have thought that they wouldn't want to live like him either.

This call was likely the first of many calls we will receive from people seeking help in dealing with grief associated with euthanasia. Our culture has decided that killing people by euthanasia, at the most vulnerable time of life, is not only an acceptable answer to difficult human experiences, but our culture has also decided that everyone should support these decisions and there is something wrong with you if you don't.

The grief that she is experiencing is normal. She truly loved her grandfather.


Ak Rhodes said...

This is called complicated grief. This happens when someone is having difficulty coping with the circumstances or issues around a death. An example is when an abusive parent has died; the family member was loved but they were also problematic. The ethos is, as was said in the article, that 'if we loved them then...' Except that the woman who is left to mourn her nondying grandfather has herself been abandoned, as he was abandoned. The conventional wisdom around euthanasia - that we should be happy 'cause they were happy to die - is too simplistic. That position, as stated by the grief counselors who refused to help the woman, is a professional abandonment of the client. We will see more of this. Assuming we are allowed to know about it.

unhappygrammy said...

My husband was ILLEGALLY, NON-CONSENUALLY Euthanized by Hospice/Palliative care who didn't even have any business going near him. We were told Nothing, not even who these death mongers were. WE refused Hospice/Palliative Care. My husband told them he wanted treatment. That he didn't want to die. All he got was death.
How am I and my family supposed to grieve, when my husband was murdered? This is a total nightmare that I will never get over. I can not fathom what they did to my husband and are getting away with it!

Rosie Belle said...

Sad and tragic. So many people are affected by euthanasia. :(

R, Rolph said...

Thank you for publicizing this. It is something people need to know. We will be hearing many more stories like this. The very first thing one learns in counseling is that we are allowed to feel what we feel. To deny someone their grief is NOT a step forward.

Harry & Nancy Bartz said...

In Canada?

CHSpurgeon said...

Unhappygranny, I understand completely your situation and I offer my sympathy for the loss of your husband. Grieving the loss of a loved one is difficult enough but dealing with how the person died is more challenging. My Dad was involuntarily euthanized 6 years ago. He did not want to die, he loved life. A long story but hospice murdered him with 4 different medications even though he was not in any pain. I was with him when he died. They lied to us which makes it worse. A website that helped out a lot was hospicepatients.org, by Ron Panzer, a nurse. He has articles from people whose stories are similar to ours. He also writes about the original ipurpose of hospice. Check out his article about stealth euthanasia.

unhappygrammy said...

Thank you and I offer my sympathy as well. I have checked out his website several times. He's a smart man. With his help, hopefully more people are becoming aware of whats really going on.

Johanna Mathieu said...

That is so sad; I really feel for her and others like her. It is so sad that our society has come to this. Will be praying for her and for our mixed up society that has all the values wrong.

bvs said...

My dear Lord, how absolutely terrifying for the patient in question. To know that the very people you are reliant on for care are actively plotting to murder you and that it isn't even personal. They have simply judged that your life is worthless so your pleas for treatment fall on deaf ears.

unhappygrammy said...

In the U.S

Anonymous said...

It doesn't matter whether a person commits suicide or is murdered. It still makes grief so much worse. Euthanasia isn't the only way doctors kill patients. My husband was killed by a hospitalist who gave him 14 drugs behind our backs and without our consent, violating a written stipulation that all treatments were to be discussed with me in advance. 7 of those drugs have been implicated as causes of bullous pemphigoid, a nasty auto-immune skin disease that causes blisters and intense itching all over arms and legs. The treatment for this is steroids, but they caused insomnia. After months of getting 4 hours of sleep per night, his heart gave out. He had an excellent heart before this. The two years that it took included intense suffering where he had all sorts of complications that never should have happened. His death will never be included in statistics of doctor-caused death. Doctors kill over 100,000 patients per year with pharmaceuticals "properly" prescribed and administered. Pat Goltz

Mike Balaski said...

The case(s)that are posted were referred to as "anecdotal" by the Justices of Canada's Supreme Court.