Darkling I listen; and for many a time I have been half in love with easeful death, Called him soft names in many a mused rhyme, To take into the air my quiet breath; Now more than ever seems it rich to die, To cease upon the midnight with no pain... —John Keats 1795-1921
Dedicated to the memories of Emily Gilbert, Janaet Adkins and Virginia Harper
Forward My mother had ovarian cancer and she was dying—in her view, not fast enough. On a day I'll never forget I visited her and she made her wishes clear: "I've had a wonderful life, but now it's over, or it should be. I'm not afraid to die, but I am afraid of this illness, what it's doing to me . . . . There's never any relief from it now. Nothing but nausea and this pain . . . . There won't be any more chemotherapy. There's no treatment anymore. So what happens to me now? I know what happens. I'll die slowly . . . . I don't want that . . . . Who does it benefit if I die slowly? If it benefits my children I'd be willing. But it's not going to do you any good. It's not going to do Ed (my husband) any good. There's no point in a slow death, none. I've never liked doing things with no point. I've got to end this."
Introduction When my first wife could no longer bear the pain and deterioration of her body and the distressed quality of her life from cancer, she asked me to help her end her life. It was both a logical and a poignant request.
Chapter One The Most Difficult Decision This is the scenario: you are terminally ill, all medical treatments acceptable to you have been exhausted, and the suffering in its different forms is unbearable. Because the illness is so serious, you recognize that your life is drawing to a close. Euthanasia comes to mind as a way of release.
The physician should be fully prepared, if necessary, to terminate with a parenteral muscle relaxant when death has failed to occur after 15 suppositories.
The phenomenal #1 New York Times bestseller that has the world talking--a practical guide for the terminally ill to dying with dignity through assisted suicide. Finally available in paperback, this considerate book is for mature adults who are considering the option of ending their lives because of unbearable pain or terminal illness.
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