Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthanasia

Seen something interesting in the news or on the intertubes? Discuss it here.

Moderators: Zamfir, Hawknc, Moderators General, Prelates

User avatar
haikyogirl
Posts: 7
Joined: Sat Feb 15, 2014 4:56 pm UTC

Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthanasia

Postby haikyogirl » Sat Feb 15, 2014 5:05 pm UTC

This article made me happy this morning. I look forward to the recognition of voluntary euthanasia as a valid and humane choice for those suffering with mental illnesses.

nrc.nl/nieuws/2014/01/02/in-the-netherlands-nine-psychiatric-patients-received-euthanasia/

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Mon Feb 17, 2014 8:13 am UTC

Your link did not work.
http://www.nrc.nl/nieuws/2014/01/02/in- ... uthanasia/
Here is another.
http://www.sin-nl.org/nieuws/netherland ... uthanasia/

That is very personal and controversial subject matter.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

Mutex
Posts: 1492
Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2008 10:32 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Mutex » Mon Feb 17, 2014 5:34 pm UTC

Yeah, I'd have thought being of sound mind would be somewhat required to agree to euthanasia. Wow.

User avatar
Brace
Posts: 1169
Joined: Wed Jul 15, 2009 5:40 am UTC
Location: Denver, Co
Contact:

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Brace » Mon Feb 17, 2014 7:27 pm UTC

What the hell. How are these conditions untreatable or anywhere near serious enough to warrant the conclusion that death is the only option? I was expecting conditions like constant neurological pain, or something, not "cleans too much".
"The future is the only kind of property that the masters willingly concede to the slaves" - Albert Camus

User avatar
PeteP
What the peck?
Posts: 1451
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2011 4:51 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby PeteP » Mon Feb 17, 2014 7:43 pm UTC

Mutex wrote:Yeah, I'd have thought being of sound mind would be somewhat required to agree to euthanasia. Wow.

Mental illnesses or being a Psychatric patient doesn't preclude being of a sound mind.

nitePhyyre
Posts: 1280
Joined: Mon Jul 27, 2009 10:31 am UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby nitePhyyre » Mon Feb 17, 2014 8:20 pm UTC

PeteP wrote:
Mutex wrote:Yeah, I'd have thought being of sound mind would be somewhat required to agree to euthanasia. Wow.
Mental illnesses or being a Psychatric patient doesn't preclude being of a sound mind.
Err... Yes it does. It is literally what those words mean.

Mutex wrote:Yeah, I'd have thought being of sound mind would be somewhat required to agree to euthanasia. Wow.
It is...
In The Netherlands, the same legal demands are made of euthanasia for psychiatric patients as those made for people suffering from a physical disease. The request must be voluntary and well considered, the patient must be subject to unbearable and hopeless suffering and there should be no other reasonable recourse.
sourmìlk wrote:Monopolies are not when a single company controls the market for a single product.

You don't become great by trying to be great. You become great by wanting to do something, and then doing it so hard you become great in the process.

User avatar
PeteP
What the peck?
Posts: 1451
Joined: Tue Aug 23, 2011 4:51 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby PeteP » Mon Feb 17, 2014 8:33 pm UTC

nitePhyyre wrote:
PeteP wrote:
Mutex wrote:Yeah, I'd have thought being of sound mind would be somewhat required to agree to euthanasia. Wow.
Mental illnesses or being a Psychatric patient doesn't preclude being of a sound mind.
Err... Yes it does. It is literally what those words mean.

Then please provide a citation that the legal definition of sound mind (all others are quite irrelevant) works like that. And that for instance nobody with any kind of mental illness can make a testament whihc requires a sound mind.

User avatar
LaserGuy
Posts: 4585
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:33 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby LaserGuy » Mon Feb 17, 2014 8:48 pm UTC

nitePhyyre wrote:
PeteP wrote:
Mutex wrote:Yeah, I'd have thought being of sound mind would be somewhat required to agree to euthanasia. Wow.
Mental illnesses or being a Psychatric patient doesn't preclude being of a sound mind.


Err... Yes it does. It is literally what those words mean.


Not necessarily. In the United States at least, sound mind has a rather specific legal definition:

SOUND MIND. That state of a man's mind which is adequate to reason and comes to a judgment upon ordinary subjects, like other rational men.
2. The law presumes that every person who has acquired his full age is of sound mind, and consequently competent to make contracts and perform all his civil duties; and he who asserts to the contrary must prove the affirmation of his position by explicit evidence, and not by conjectural proof. 2 Hagg Eccl. R. 434; 3 Addams' R. 86; 8 Watts, R. 66; Ray, Med. Jur. Sec. 92; 3 Curt. Eccl. R. 671. Vide Unsound mind.


The term basically translates to "not proven to be insane". People with mental illness may be insane, but the vast majority are not, and are legally entitled to make decisions regarding their health, among other things. Saying that all people who have mental illness are not of sound mind would lead to a whole bunch of adverse consequences, like them not being allowed to sign contracts or vote or whatever.

User avatar
Cleverbeans
Posts: 1378
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 1:16 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Cleverbeans » Mon Feb 17, 2014 10:24 pm UTC

nitePhyyre wrote:
PeteP wrote:
Mutex wrote:Yeah, I'd have thought being of sound mind would be somewhat required to agree to euthanasia. Wow.
Mental illnesses or being a Psychatric patient doesn't preclude being of a sound mind.
Err... Yes it does. It is literally what those words mean.


No it doesn't. I have a mental illness, and the vast majority of the time I'm of sound mind. Psychotic episodes don't last forever and mental illness is treatable. When I'm on my medications, eating and sleeping well I'm definitely capable of making rational decisions about my health care.

I can definitely see this being a reasonable option for some forms of mental illness. If they are going to euthanize someone with depression or bipolar I could imagine a lot of pushback but for someone with schizophrenia or one of the anxiety classes that resists treatment I can see why it would be considered. For someone with depression however I can't see any real way to tell if they are of sound mind when they request euthanasia since one of defining symptoms is suicidal ideation. Certainly I can tell the difference between when I'm unwell and suicidal and when I'm well and just want to die because of the illness I just don't see how a psychiatrist could make that evaluation. Perhaps if other symptoms are not present but a calm rational argument for suicide is made it's possible? For example when I'm unwell I isolate socially, can't make eye contact, won't leave my bedroom, and can't take care of myself including eating and hygiene. Assuming I was socially active, able to make eye contact and taking care of my personal needs if I was still advocating for euthanasia I think it should be considered. Frankly if it was legal in Canada I would be actively trying to make this happen.

If you can't understand why someone with mental illness would rationally want end of life care the stigma alone is enough for most. For some it's very much a daily struggle to stay well and even then it's not always possible and relapse can occur frequently. Treatment isn't free of side effects either as the medications can cause of host of other problems including significantly impaired functioning in every area of life. Some patients I saw when hospitalized would either be so over medicated that they would constantly drool and couldn't keep their pants up and couldn't carry their food tray five feet without dropping it, or would be under medicated and have paranoid delusions and become violent. They try really hard to tune the medications but often they can't find a balance and it's really not a life I would want to live.

Also, it really annoys me that the first article describes one of the patients as being "of sound body." Last I checked my brain is part of my body...
"Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration." - Abraham Lincoln

User avatar
DireKobold
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:28 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby DireKobold » Mon Feb 17, 2014 10:40 pm UTC

I can certainly understand why someone with a mental illness would want to end their life. But it does seem like this would open up some edge cases where the best course of action is far from clear.

User avatar
CorruptUser
Posts: 10550
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:12 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Feb 17, 2014 10:45 pm UTC

Terry Pratchett has sworn that he would take his Alzheimer's down with him. I wouldn't tell him no, he has to live the rest of his life as his mind slowly deteriorates. If a pet was suffering some sort of debilitating, we'd consider it cruelty to keep it alive. But when a person asks? When that person clearly wants to avoid the suffering? When that person has no hope of recovery? It's somehow wrong to give a coup de grace.

User avatar
Ormurinn
Posts: 1033
Joined: Tue Apr 03, 2012 3:42 pm UTC
Location: Suth Eoferwicscire

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Ormurinn » Mon Feb 17, 2014 10:47 pm UTC

Cleverbeans wrote:
Also, it really annoys me that the first article describes one of the patients as being "of sound body." Last I checked my brain is part of my body...


Some people explicitly, and most implicitly, subscribe to a dualistic model of the mind and body.

I'm frankly unsure where it comes from, since its effectively a Gnostic view - most mainstream christian churches subscribe to body soul dualism, but reject mind body dualism (bodily resurrection, natch)
"Progress" - Technological advances masking societal decay.

User avatar
EMTP
Posts: 1556
Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 7:39 pm UTC
Location: Elbow deep in (mostly) other people's blood.

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby EMTP » Mon Feb 17, 2014 11:23 pm UTC

Cleverbeans wrote:
No it doesn't. I have a mental illness, and the vast majority of the time I'm of sound mind. Psychotic episodes don't last forever and mental illness is treatable. When I'm on my medications, eating and sleeping well I'm definitely capable of making rational decisions about my health care.


Typically the standard used in American healthcare is called "decisional capacity." Unfortunately the standard is not well understood, even by healthcare professionals. It is often confused with sobriety or the absence of disorientation (being oriented to self, place, and time). In most cases mentally ill persons are considered to have the same decisional capacity as anyone else. Exceptions include being suicidal or homicidal (which, in a bit of cultural subjectivity, are considered prima facie evidence of unsound mind.)

Decisional capacity means the ability to understand the choice by understanding what the alternatives are and the risks and benefits of those alternatives. It does not require you to think or behave rationally, just to understand the choice. Thus you have a right to make stupid decisions about your healthcare, as long as you are making a decision about something resembling the world we actually live in and not a delusional fantasy world.

Of course there's lot of subjectivity and grey areas.

Let me give a simple example. A person with diabetic ketoacidosis wants to leave the hospital or the emergency room. You go talk to them about why:

1. "I can't be here. I have to feed my dog. I might get worse or I might die, but I have to feed my dog." Foolish but realistic. OK to go.

2. "I'm leaving. You Nazi scientists are not going to get my retinas!" This patient's delirium is preventing them from understanding the choice they are making. Can't leave.

3. "I'm leaving. I'm not very sick and I'm going to be fine."
"Sir, as I've explained to you, you might get worse and you might die."
"No, nothing is going to happen and I'm going to be fine."

Many medical professionals would let #3 go, but in actual fact, they aren't demonstrating decisional capacity either, and technically you ought to hold them, because they aren't demonstrating that they understand the possible consequences of their decision.

As this pertains to the mentally ill, obviously sometimes they have decisional capacity, and sometimes they don't. Deep depression can rob you of decisional capacity, and so can many other things.
"Reasonable – that is, human – men will always be capable of compromise, but men who have dehumanized themselves by becoming the blind worshipers of an idea or an ideal are fanatics whose devotion to abstractions makes them the enemies of life."
-- Alan Watts, "The Way of Zen"

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:00 am UTC

I have a question about the original link.
Is that a real story about a real thing that is happening in the Neatherlands?

The link, sort of, loops.
I don't know these things.

Is that a True Story?
It is less than a year old?

I doe no.
doe U no?

http://www.euthanasiecommissie.nl/overd ... arverslag/
I can't find the 2013 report.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Euthanasia ... etherlands
That is interesting reading.
I trust they are doing their best.

It is in English.
Some of the more complex thoughts may have dripped out during translation.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
Jave D
chavey-dee
Posts: 1042
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2010 4:41 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Jave D » Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:21 am UTC

Another patient who received euthanasia in 2013 was a healthy 63 year-old man. He worked for a governmental organisation and all he did was work. He had never been on holiday. He also used to do volunteer work in his free time. He had already tried and failed to commit suicide once and did not want to go through that again. He also did not want to affect other people. The patient had been treated for depression for many years. However, this had not helped. Now, due to his age, he was close to retirement and wanted to die. “He managed to convince me that it was impossible for him to go on. He was all alone in the world. He’d never had a partner. He did have family but he was not in touch with them. It was almost like he’d never developed as a person. He felt like he didn’t have the right to live. His self-hatred is all consuming”, says Casteelen during the patient’s life-time. “It sounds bizarre when I put it like that. He functions well at work. His colleagues love him.” The man organised a farewell drink for his colleagues, the evening before his passing, in a café they regularly go to for lunch. His colleagues had been informed of his decision a few days in advance. “Lots of people were very sad” says Casteelen, who was also present at the event. “He was such a nice, pleasant person. People told him it was a shame he had to go. Is this really necessary was also something I heard people saying. They thought he had a good job. But he was so close to retirement. Many people knew how lonely he was and that he spent all his time working. People gave speeches and the patient received little gifts. Angels with messages. Things he could take with him.” Casteelen went to his house the next morning. “He was relaxed. He felt he was doing the right thing. We sat and chatted for a while. He then went and lay down. He drank the mixture. It’s what he wanted.” Most people pass away within ten minutes. However, this man was still alive two hours later. “He was sleeping peacefully. A real die-hard. We had discussed this situation beforehand. I told him that I would give him medication via a drip if this happened. That’s what I did.”


This man sounds suspiciously like me. Except for the age factor, and the fact that for me, "retirement" is basically a euphemism at this point for "homelessness."

So my open question: if I said that I hated myself and I wanted to die, would you support my being put down?

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:40 am UTC

I would support you in going through the process.
Your concerns are valid.

A sane system would have choices other than Homelessness.
If you don't want to be Homeless, if that happens to you…

We have failed.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
DireKobold
Posts: 20
Joined: Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:28 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby DireKobold » Tue Feb 18, 2014 1:48 am UTC

Jave D wrote:This man sounds suspiciously like me. Except for the age factor, and the fact that for me, "retirement" is basically a euphemism at this point for "homelessness."

So my open question: if I said that I hated myself and I wanted to die, would you support my being put down?


No. I would try to talk you out of it, strenuously.

But it's really hard to stop someone who really wants to die. Which is why I don't feel like for all my efforts that I would be impinging upon your rights (as to what those are exactly that's a whole other rabbit hole). But the reason I would oppose it is that I feel that we should erect certain barriers to death primarily since it's irrevocable. Similar arguments have been brought to bear on the death penalty.

User avatar
WibblyWobbly
Can't Get No
Posts: 506
Joined: Fri Apr 05, 2013 1:03 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby WibblyWobbly » Tue Feb 18, 2014 2:28 am UTC

Jave D wrote:This man sounds suspiciously like me. Except for the age factor, and the fact that for me, "retirement" is basically a euphemism at this point for "homelessness."

So my open question: if I said that I hated myself and I wanted to die, would you support my being put down?

Apologies for answering a question with a question, but I would ask how much and for how long you sought treatment. How many medications did you seriously remain on long enough to see some effect? I'm not saying medication is a silver bullet - some actually have side effects that make the main condition appreciably worse. How many different types of therapy? How many different therapists? Any improvement, or did all fail? Basically, I would want to know that you had made all reasonable efforts to find a way to live, and that euthanasia was really, honestly and totally the last resort.

But if it was the last resort, and you still wanted to die, I would help you myself.

Edit: I would also direct people who haven't dealt personally with mental illness to go back and re-read Cleverbeans' post. As he said, for problems such as depression and bipolar, the line at where we decide someone is of sound mind will be significantly more difficult (I think in that case that it would be best if the patient has a therapist or counselor who has known them for a long time and might have more insight into their state of mind), but for things like severe mysophobia (which Brace so elegantly described as "cleaning too much") for whom the compulsion to sanitize/sterilize/disinfect becomes the all-consuming center of your life, to the point where you can't leave the house, can't hold a job and can't form relationships, you can be damn sure that those people know what is going on and know that their lives are being ruined slowly; those people, I might give a little more consideration to. And for things like Alzheimer's, as CorruptUser mentioned - when someone has the sentence of slowly feeling themselves deteriorate mentally, why are we committed to making them experience every last second of it with no hope in sight?

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Tue Feb 18, 2014 3:12 am UTC

Amen.
We can and should treat one another with the consideration we extend to our treasured pets.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
Jave D
chavey-dee
Posts: 1042
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2010 4:41 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Jave D » Tue Feb 18, 2014 3:20 am UTC

WibblyWobbly wrote:
Jave D wrote:This man sounds suspiciously like me. Except for the age factor, and the fact that for me, "retirement" is basically a euphemism at this point for "homelessness."

So my open question: if I said that I hated myself and I wanted to die, would you support my being put down?

Apologies for answering a question with a question, but I would ask how much and for how long you sought treatment. How many medications did you seriously remain on long enough to see some effect? I'm not saying medication is a silver bullet - some actually have side effects that make the main condition appreciably worse. How many different types of therapy? How many different therapists? Any improvement, or did all fail? Basically, I would want to know that you had made all reasonable efforts to find a way to live, and that euthanasia was really, honestly and totally the last resort.

But if it was the last resort, and you still wanted to die, I would help you myself.


But if it really is their choice, why should they need to convince you of anything? It's their choice. All they should have to do is say they want to die - end of story. The thing I'm taking away is for this Euthanasia Doctor Club, or whatever it is, is putting themselves in the godlike role of Judge and Jury and Executioner of other people. People who are, at least in this case, suffering from a disorder whose symptoms are being treated not as symptoms but as valid reasons to be killed.

Is that really a medical approach to depression in any way shape or form? "Okay depression, you win! Time to sacrifice another victim." It's strongly implying that suicide is just self-medication, and that the only thing really wrong with suicide is that it's not done within the system of penitents going to their Arbitrators to convince them to do it instead. That, ironically, the repugnant self-committed suicide is really "their choice", while being euthanized is actually the "choice" of the Roving Death Panel Hammer, which is unsurprisingly encountering a lot of Nails.

User avatar
LaserGuy
Posts: 4585
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:33 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby LaserGuy » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:00 am UTC

Jave D wrote:
WibblyWobbly wrote:
Jave D wrote:This man sounds suspiciously like me. Except for the age factor, and the fact that for me, "retirement" is basically a euphemism at this point for "homelessness."

So my open question: if I said that I hated myself and I wanted to die, would you support my being put down?

Apologies for answering a question with a question, but I would ask how much and for how long you sought treatment. How many medications did you seriously remain on long enough to see some effect? I'm not saying medication is a silver bullet - some actually have side effects that make the main condition appreciably worse. How many different types of therapy? How many different therapists? Any improvement, or did all fail? Basically, I would want to know that you had made all reasonable efforts to find a way to live, and that euthanasia was really, honestly and totally the last resort.

But if it was the last resort, and you still wanted to die, I would help you myself.


But if it really is their choice, why should they need to convince you of anything? It's their choice. All they should have to do is say they want to die - end of story. The thing I'm taking away is for this Euthanasia Doctor Club, or whatever it is, is putting themselves in the godlike role of Judge and Jury and Executioner of other people. People who are, at least in this case, suffering from a disorder whose symptoms are being treated not as symptoms but as valid reasons to be killed.

Is that really a medical approach to depression in any way shape or form? "Okay depression, you win! Time to sacrifice another victim." It's strongly implying that suicide is just self-medication, and that the only thing really wrong with suicide is that it's not done within the system of penitents going to their Arbitrators to convince them to do it instead. That, ironically, the repugnant self-committed suicide is really "their choice", while being euthanized is actually the "choice" of the Roving Death Panel Hammer, which is unsurprisingly encountering a lot of Nails.


In cases of legal assisted suicide, you would still need to demonstrate to a medical ethics board or something similar that your symptoms justify it. You are free to want to take your own life, but if you want someone to help you, then they have some say on what specifically they feel is required for them to do so, and those conditions are set out in law. Similarly, you can't go into a hospital and ask them to remove your hand, just because you don't like it anymore. There needs to be a valid medical reason for them to undertake treatment. In the case of assisted suicide, generally it cannot be undertaken unless your condition is untreatable and your quality of life is miserable.

User avatar
WibblyWobbly
Can't Get No
Posts: 506
Joined: Fri Apr 05, 2013 1:03 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby WibblyWobbly » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:08 am UTC

Jave D wrote:But if it really is their choice, why should they need to convince you of anything? It's their choice. All they should have to do is say they want to die - end of story.


Certainly. It's their choice whether they want to commit suicide or not. And if they ask me for help, whether or not I give that help is my choice. The state will react similarly; if you want state-assisted suicide, meet the state's conditions.
(Ninja'd much better by LaserGuy)

Jave D wrote:The thing I'm taking away is for this Euthanasia Doctor Club, or whatever it is, is putting themselves in the godlike role of Judge and Jury and Executioner of other people. People who are, at least in this case, suffering from a disorder whose symptoms are being treated not as symptoms but as valid reasons to be killed.

Is that really a medical approach to depression in any way shape or form? "Okay depression, you win! Time to sacrifice another victim." It's strongly implying that suicide is just self-medication, and that the only thing really wrong with suicide is that it's not done within the system of penitents going to their Arbitrators to convince them to do it instead. That, ironically, the repugnant self-committed suicide is really "their choice", while being euthanized is actually the "choice" of the Roving Death Panel Hammer, which is unsurprisingly encountering a lot of Nails.


I'm not sure I understand you. Are you assuming that roving bands of psychiatrists are crisscrossing the Netherlands, rounding up people with minor mental illnesses for their "suicide" squads? Roving Death Panel Hammer? Did some part of this process become involuntary, or are we back to the problem of deciding whether the applicant who chooses euthanasia voluntarily is really doing so voluntarily, and then assigning hyperbole to the doctors who, after what I can only assume is significant deliberation, come to the conclusion that an applicant is of at least the same soundness of mind as someone with terminal cancer? Please help me understand your point - carving away just a shred of the hyperbole would help.

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:38 am UTC

WibblyWobbly wrote: Are you assuming that roving bands of psychiatrists are crisscrossing the Netherlands, rounding up people with minor mental illnesses for their "suicide" squads? Roving Death Panel Hammer?


I know it is a serious subject.
But..But..Your Post had a funny sentence in it.

I live in a world where people play all sorts of weird games.
Many, many deaths occur inside the those games.

Here is the description of a really weird new game.
Dutch Psychiatrists roving in bands.

Like garage bands?
Some carry bag pipes?

Monty Pyton comes to mind.
I man has contacted the Dutch Crisis Help Line.

A band has been dispatched to the man's location.

The bag pipe player MUST have an important role.

Bagpipes are funny.
Anything that is done with a bag pipe is funnier
than the same activity done without a bag pipe.

Who knows what Dutch Psychiatrists would do?
In your imagination how are they?

Very business like?
"Your name is on the form."

As the bag pipe plays………..

Back to the seriousness of Death.
Death is serious.

It happens to everyone.
Some people get more than one shot at it.

It is serious.
Yet; We often laugh.

I am sorry.
Where were you?

With your Band of Dutch Psychiatrists.
It is still a funny idea.

There they go, across my imagination;
Playing a bag pipe.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
Djehutynakht
Posts: 1546
Joined: Thu Feb 10, 2011 1:37 am UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Djehutynakht » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:54 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Terry Pratchett has sworn that he would take his Alzheimer's down with him. I wouldn't tell him no, he has to live the rest of his life as his mind slowly deteriorates. If a pet was suffering some sort of debilitating, we'd consider it cruelty to keep it alive.


Half the time I feel that we put down animals simply because it's a lot of trouble to keep a pet alive that's not quite so justifiable as, say, ones elderly human relative.

Of course, there are those who love their pets as dearly as they would any human, but still, I don't think this is a case of "we're so sweet to pets and cruel to humans".
_______________________________________

Jave D wrote:So my open question: if I said that I hated myself and I wanted to die, would you support my being put down?


Probably not. People say that and wish that far too often.

I do think that the "absolutely no other option" criteria is a big factor, at least in regards to something along the idea of "I hate myself".

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:32 pm UTC

Hell-o;
This is about treatment for Mental Illnesses?
What do we know about treatment for Mental Illnesses?

Not looking at Wiki for this.
What did I hear in school; 'over and over'?
What did you hear?

Judy yelled at us, sometimes.
She thought it was important.

"Remember! Why do we treat Mental Illness?!"
"We treat Mental Illness for the same reason
we treat any other Illness!

"To! Ease! Suffering!"

She would go on, sometimes.
Usually she was discussing Dx.

Spoiler:
She told us something, one time, that still bothers me, sometimes.
I talked to her about it. I could not understand it.

She said, "Just remember it and be careful."
I was not careful enough.

We can Help, almost, everyone.
There are, a very few, exceptions.

SocioPaths. umm. Anti-Social Personality Disorders.
Fundamental Character Disorders.

Different times different names for that one.
She said, "There is nothing that can be done for this person.
"We protect others from this person, when possible."

You know how she was. She went on to discuss the Little Bits.
Some people have that shit, a little bit. (fuck)

Those kinds of tendencies….
Can be Normalized within a culture. (yuck)


Mental Illness.
Q.. Why do we treat it?
A. For the same reason we treat any other illness.
To ease suffering.


I'm pretty sure I got that one right.
What do you think?

It is a very personal thing.
Would you surrender?
Would you ask for help?

Oh. Mental Illness like loads of other Illnesses,
are, Sometimes!, Contagious!

Where were you?
Talking. Typing. Writing.
Doing nothing.

Like me.
Writing into an Internet Forum.

Why? Heavens…
Spoiler:
I Spend too much time alone.
I irritate the shit out of some people.
Make that Most People. (fuck)
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
Izawwlgood
WINNING
Posts: 18686
Joined: Mon Nov 19, 2007 3:55 pm UTC
Location: There may be lovelier lovelies...

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:49 pm UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Terry Pratchett has sworn that he would take his Alzheimer's down with him. I wouldn't tell him no, he has to live the rest of his life as his mind slowly deteriorates. If a pet was suffering some sort of debilitating, we'd consider it cruelty to keep it alive.


Half the time I feel that we put down animals simply because it's a lot of trouble to keep a pet alive that's not quite so justifiable as, say, ones elderly human relative.

Of course, there are those who love their pets as dearly as they would any human, but still, I don't think this is a case of "we're so sweet to pets and cruel to humans".
_______________________________________

Jave D wrote:So my open question: if I said that I hated myself and I wanted to die, would you support my being put down?


Probably not. People say that and wish that far too often.

I do think that the "absolutely no other option" criteria is a big factor, at least in regards to something along the idea of "I hate myself".


So curious; I find your position that humans should persist through the pain, but we have a responsibility to put down pets who are ailing to be... really contradictory. You'll surely posit that humans aren't pets, but probably didn't stop to notice that in both situations, the ailing individual is wholly reliant on others for care, and, perhaps most importantly, what you support is pretty irrelevant to what someone else needs.
... with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandalled feet.

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Tue Feb 18, 2014 5:05 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:What you support is pretty irrelevant to what someone else needs.

That is a nice clear message.
It, sort of, depends upon who you are writing to.
Sort of. Correct?

quick edit:
Medical Personal get all snooty with one another, sometimes.
I have seen it.

Spoiler:
Sometimes the Question is:
Who is Nuts?
All of 'em.

Who is the Most Nuts?
That Guy!

Him; I Like.
Take him! Leave the Rest?

Go! Go! Go!

It is so nice to agree with The Other Team Members.


It is a Horrible Situation for the Most Nuts guy to be The Guy no one wants to fuck with. (fuck)
Why can't we take all the Not Nuts People and Leave The Nuts Guy behind?

Because, Honey;
After the selection process,
You and I would have to stay.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
Jave D
chavey-dee
Posts: 1042
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2010 4:41 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Jave D » Tue Feb 18, 2014 8:29 pm UTC

WibblyWobbly wrote:
Jave D wrote:But if it really is their choice, why should they need to convince you of anything? It's their choice. All they should have to do is say they want to die - end of story.


Certainly. It's their choice whether they want to commit suicide or not. And if they ask me for help, whether or not I give that help is my choice. The state will react similarly; if you want state-assisted suicide, meet the state's conditions.
(Ninja'd much better by LaserGuy)


But it's clearly your choice that's the one that matters, since whether you say yes or no determines whether someone lives or dies and you get to judge who's worthy of life and who isn't.

So their choice doesn't matter. They are just like pets who need to be put down. (Hey, I wasn't the one who brought up that analogy.) All they have to do is sell themselves and their depression convincingly enough to win you over.

User avatar
Zamfir
I built a novelty castle, the irony was lost on some.
Posts: 7604
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2008 2:43 pm UTC
Location: Nederland

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Zamfir » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:18 pm UTC

Jave, the formal procedures are not steps someone has to go through in order to commit suicide. There are countries where attempted suicide is formally a crime for the person doing it, but that's not the case in the Netherlands.

The procedures lay down what a doctor has to do and has to verify, before they can assist someone who wants to commit suicide. The committee stuff is an after-the-fact review of the actions of the doctor. Outside of this specific framework for heavy illnesses, it is illegal (in the Netherlands) to assist or encourage someone who wants to commit suicide.

It's a compromise. Some people here wanted to keep (and want to return to) the consistent ban against assisting in suicide, other people want to abolish that rule completely. As a compromise doctors are since 1998 allowed to assist in suicide. But only under specific circumstances, they have to take sufficient measures to assure that these circumstances are met, and they will be reviewed by others on that.

The clinic mentioned in this article is run by people who want to remove most of the remaining restrictions, they would offer more and easier support for suicide if they were legally allowed. As long as they cannot get enough political support for that, they run a clinic within the existing legal framework. If you want a doctor to assist you with your suicide, you can go to them if you do not want to go to to your regular doctors. However, they scrupulously go through the formal motions, with double care because they know that they are under review. They reject many applications for assistance.

It's a very controversial situation. Also because the law was not really written with such an organization in mind. The law was intended primarily for doctors who would encounter requests for suicide assistance in the normal course of their work, from their regular patients.


I would like to know what aspect of the situation you object to most. Clearly, many people here object to the specifics of it as well, but the objections pull in different directions, and the current legal framework is the resultant middle. Though since 1998, I think the compromise itself has attracted more support than it had at the start.

User avatar
LaserGuy
Posts: 4585
Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 5:33 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby LaserGuy » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:25 pm UTC

Jave D wrote:But it's clearly your choice that's the one that matters, since whether you say yes or no determines whether someone lives or dies and you get to judge who's worthy of life and who isn't.

So their choice doesn't matter. They are just like pets who need to be put down. (Hey, I wasn't the one who brought up that analogy.) All they have to do is sell themselves and their depression convincingly enough to win you over.


Well, no, because if you don't want assisted suicide, they're certainly not going to give it to you. You have to want assisted suicide, and they have to agree that it is an appropriate course of action. If either of those two conditions aren't met, then it doesn't happen.

The difference with pets is that they actually don't have any say in the matter, and it is left to the judgment of the owner to act in the pet's best interest (or not). Under assisted suicide laws, the patient has complete say in the matter: If they don't want assisted suicide, it can't happen.

[edit]Added quote for better context

Heisenberg
Posts: 3789
Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 8:48 pm UTC
Location: Uncertain

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Heisenberg » Tue Feb 18, 2014 10:22 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:If a pet was suffering some sort of debilitating, we'd consider it cruelty to keep it alive. But when a person asks? When that person clearly wants to avoid the suffering? When that person has no hope of recovery? It's somehow wrong to give a coup de grace.

I know, right? Bag a deer and everyone wants venison, but hunt a human and everyone gets upset! :roll:

User avatar
CorruptUser
Posts: 10550
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:12 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Feb 18, 2014 10:55 pm UTC

Heisenberg wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:If a pet was suffering some sort of debilitating, we'd consider it cruelty to keep it alive. But when a person asks? When that person clearly wants to avoid the suffering? When that person has no hope of recovery? It's somehow wrong to give a coup de grace.

I know, right? Bag a deer and everyone wants venison, but hunt a human and everyone gets upset! :roll:


Except dogs are capable of far more emotions than deer. Besides, without wolves to keep deer populations under control, they would overpopulate and starve, but not before destroying the forests (seriously, fuck deer). Every pound of venison harvested from the woods is one less pound of pork that needs to be factory farmed.

We also have an implied contract with work animals; you remain useful to us, and we will view you differently than the rest. That's why it's 'wrong' to eat the work animals like horse or dog. Similarly, Indians used cows as work animals, and so cows became 'wrong' to eat.

User avatar
Cleverbeans
Posts: 1378
Joined: Wed Mar 26, 2008 1:16 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Cleverbeans » Wed Feb 19, 2014 12:05 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:We also have an implied contract with work animals; you remain useful to us, and we will view you differently than the rest. That's why it's 'wrong' to eat the work animals like horse or dog. Similarly, Indians used cows as work animals, and so cows became 'wrong' to eat.


Not to get too off topic but this is essentially a western idea. Many cultures use horses and dogs for work and still eat them. Also Indians don't eat cows for religious reasons not because they're work animals. I've never actually heard anyone draw the work animal distinction before when discussing meat as food, it's curious.
"Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration." - Abraham Lincoln

User avatar
addams
Posts: 10332
Joined: Sun Sep 12, 2010 4:44 am UTC
Location: Oregon Coast: 97444

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby addams » Wed Feb 19, 2014 12:18 am UTC

Jave D wrote:
WibblyWobbly wrote:
Jave D wrote:But if it really is their choice, why should they need to convince you of anything? It's their choice. All they should have to do is say they want to die - end of story.


Certainly. It's their choice whether they want to commit suicide or not. And if they ask me for help, whether or not I give that help is my choice. The state will react similarly; if you want state-assisted suicide, meet the state's conditions.
(Ninja'd much better by LaserGuy)


But it's clearly your choice that's the one that matters, since whether you say yes or no determines whether someone lives or dies and you get to judge who's worthy of life and who isn't.

So their choice doesn't matter. They are just like pets who need to be put down. (Hey, I wasn't the one who brought up that analogy.) All they have to do is sell themselves and their depression convincingly enough to win you over.

What?
Sell themselves and their depression?

ech. You lost me.
You do know, "Some people Love being miserable."
Right?

I know that. It was a hard sell.
I did not understand.

I don't have to understand.
Someone else does.

Take it to Committee!
Large Committees?

I was told, "Elephants are made by Committee."
What did the people you respect argue about?

I like Elephants.
Not on the Dinning Room Table!

Sometimes, in the interest of temporary Peace,
we eat around the Elephant.

Are we all Americans?
Are we criticizing the Dutch Mental Health System?

I refuse to criticize a system I do not understand.
It might meet the needs of its people.

How nice to know your people would not allow you to suffer.
I would like to rest in that knowledge.

Lucky Dutch Bag Pipe Players.
A Shoe!
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

User avatar
CorruptUser
Posts: 10550
Joined: Fri Nov 06, 2009 10:12 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby CorruptUser » Wed Feb 19, 2014 3:15 am UTC

Cleverbeans wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:We also have an implied contract with work animals; you remain useful to us, and we will view you differently than the rest. That's why it's 'wrong' to eat the work animals like horse or dog. Similarly, Indians used cows as work animals, and so cows became 'wrong' to eat.


Not to get too off topic but this is essentially a western idea. Many cultures use horses and dogs for work and still eat them. Also Indians don't eat cows for religious reasons not because they're work animals. I've never actually heard anyone draw the work animal distinction before when discussing meat as food, it's curious.


Why do you think it became a religious idea? In India, cattle were used to plow the fields, provided dairy during famines, as well as crapped fuel, becoming a motherly figure to the locals. People don't just pick an animal out at random and say "hey, that's a cool looking animal, it's a god!", it's "this animal is useful; Thou Shalt Not Eat Useful Animals".

What I'm not sure about is why cows didn't become taboo Europe, as oxen were used for work as well. Maybe it's because dogs and horses were trained to fight, but bulls were not? But donkeys didn't fight, yet we don't eat those.

User avatar
Jave D
chavey-dee
Posts: 1042
Joined: Mon Oct 18, 2010 4:41 pm UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Jave D » Wed Feb 19, 2014 3:38 am UTC

Zamfir wrote:I would like to know what aspect of the situation you object to most. Clearly, many people here object to the specifics of it as well, but the objections pull in different directions, and the current legal framework is the resultant middle. Though since 1998, I think the compromise itself has attracted more support than it had at the start.


The specifics of assisting the suicide of people who suffer from depression. Terminally ill cancer patients and the like I can understand. Situations where there's no cure, no treatment, medically nothing but prolonging a period of agony and suffering. Depression doesn't compare. So in this case it's basically just like admitting that yep, depression is hopeless, you depressed people might as well die because you basically have a terminal illness and so let's end the suffering. Maybe that's just the message I'm hearing because I'm in that spot right now. If my depression had its own voice, it would be loving the hell out of this whole idea. 'Yes. End it. There's no hope. Life is just suffering.' That's what it would say. And we have now medical professionals who are agreeing with that voice. Lending it an air of authority.

User avatar
Zamfir
I built a novelty castle, the irony was lost on some.
Posts: 7604
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2008 2:43 pm UTC
Location: Nederland

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Zamfir » Wed Feb 19, 2014 7:01 am UTC

Yeah, the authority aspect matters. It's probably telling that people request assistance even when they are presumably capable of acquiring some effective means to commit suicide on their own. The main reason, I presume, is that (some) people value the formal approval in itself, prefer an open and approved route rather than a lonely and secretive approach to suicide.

I am personally somewhat concerned about these developments. In particular, I am not convinced that the existing framework is well-suited to people with psychiatrical problems. But I have only the most superficial knowledge of how this works in practice, so I don't hold that view strongly.

I have understood that the requirements are, at the moment, quite high. Nearly every request for assisted suicide from people with psychiatric problems gets rejected. Being depressed and feeling that life is hopeless not anywhere near the required basis.

For me, it's abit like addams says above:
I refuse to criticize a system I do not understand.
It might meet the needs of its people

I think it's possible that the current system does a good job balancing the various aspects of assisted suicide, even for people with psychiatric problems. That it meets the needs of the people. But I am not sure, and I am uncomfortable that the standards are set by essentially a fairly small group of psychiatrists.

User avatar
Zamfir
I built a novelty castle, the irony was lost on some.
Posts: 7604
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2008 2:43 pm UTC
Location: Nederland

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Zamfir » Wed Feb 19, 2014 7:03 am UTC


As mod, I want to ask everyone to refrain from analogies with putting down pets or shooting deer. Those are a rather crude way to approach a sensitive subject.


BattleMoose
Posts: 1993
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2007 8:42 am UTC

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby BattleMoose » Wed Feb 19, 2014 7:27 am UTC

I am generally in favour of assisted suicide but there are issues.

Life may be unbearable in the present but there might be a good chance that it could get much better (for whatever reason). But in a society where we deeply value personal decision making, that should be the individuals choice regardless. But perhaps requiring the individual to go through the motions and examine all the aspects and really explore the decision may prove beneficial.

Perhaps a more likely issue is that family members might coerce elderly/disabled/mentally ill, family members to apply for assisted suicide. I really don't know how we could get around this one. When my grandfather was on his deathbed, he literally asked for poison and we really wanted to give it to him. He died a few days later. I see real value in it, but it certainly would be open to abuse.

There's actually a Star Trek episode (TNG) that explores this exact issue in detail.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Half_a_Lif ... eration%29

Heisenberg
Posts: 3789
Joined: Wed May 14, 2008 8:48 pm UTC
Location: Uncertain

Re: Nine psychiatric patients in the Netherlands have euthan

Postby Heisenberg » Wed Feb 19, 2014 3:39 pm UTC

Jave D wrote:And we have now medical professionals who are agreeing with that voice. Lending it an air of authority.

This is disturbing to me as well. Certainly there is a long and storied history of able-bodied individuals desiring to kill themselves. However, I find doctors and politicians who wish to encourage this behavior to be repulsive and criminal.


Return to “News & Articles”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 18 guests