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Thread: Brittany Maynard

  1. #1
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    Brittany Maynard

    You're probably asking yourselves, "who is Brittany Maynard and why should I give a shit?" She's alive but soon won't be. She's 29 years old and she has terminal brain cancer. She has moved to Oregon because they have a law that allows a terminally ill person to end their own life. The doctor prescribes you the medicine and you have to be able to take it yourself. In any case she's spending her last days advocating that California get a similar law. If the cancer doesn't kill her in October she plans to end her life with dignity no later than November 1st. Here's a link to the article.

    http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/wom...gon/ar-BB8cLxl

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    I wish that were an option everywhere. It just doesn't seem right that a person can be forced to linger for months, up to years, with no quality of life. Good for her.

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    I saw this just yesterday on Facebook. I'm saddened for her and her family but grateful that she will get to choose when and how she will pass. This should be an option in every state. We put animals down to stop their suffering, why not have the option to put ourselves down instead of suffering...... Prayers for her and her family......


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    This is one brave lady. I couldn't imagine having to make this decision. And I agree 100% that this option should be available everywhere. After a thorough mental health evaluation and a second opinion on the terminal diagnosis. It's terrible that a person has to suffer even when death is inevitable. I am a Christian but I believe people should have the right to choose their ending the same as I have the right to my faith. Well theoretically we already do but there should be legal protections in place.
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    Whew........brave lady

    We are more compassionate about our animals than we are about our people suffering

    Weird

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    She went through with it. http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/...storiesfromnpr

    Her suffering is past.
    I am the king of all things stupid!

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    I really have mixed emotions about this. I had a friend battle colon cancer for years and lost his battle in March this year. He was hurting in the end that's for sure, but he wanted to spend as much time with his kids and family as he could. What he wouldn't have done for one more day.

    Plus, she announced that she decided to change her date and then did it anyway, I don't get it.

    Also I would really like to know how these drugs work if anyone knows.... I mean do you just take them and go to sleep?
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    I believe that's how the drugs work. I read that she passed peacefully in her sleep. So I'm assuming it's a sedative to knock you completely out and something to arrest the breathing while unconscious. Totally guessing.

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    I can't imagine facing death at her young age. I think she did what she felt was right for herself and her family. I think the option should be available for anyone facing a debilitating, painful terminal illness. I really don't understand the opposition to it when putting a suffering animal to sleep is considered compassionate.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mammy View Post
    I can't imagine facing death at her young age. I think she did what she felt was right for herself and her family. I think the option should be available for anyone facing a debilitating, painful terminal illness. I really don't understand the opposition to it when putting a suffering animal to sleep is considered compassionate.
    One word: Religion. And to be more precise Christianity. I'm not bashing religion. Just stating a fact that that is why the opposition. They feel if you take your own life you're taking away God's judgment. Suffering may be part of "His" plan and we shouldn't mess with that. That's what many think. And it says in the bible that suicide is wrong. And that's that for some people. My answer to those concerns is to politely tell them they are free to suffer and go out au natural if that is how they choose to do it, but why should everyone else have to suffer for your beliefs?

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    Awwww... I saw earlier this week that she may give herself a little more time, but I guess she really had a bad seizure, extreme headache, and loss of speech to say, "This it is." What that poor girl went through, it really tugs at my heartstrings. She was probably just hanging on until her husband's birthday until she said she couldn't take it anymore.

    I tend to lean conservative on life issues, but when a fully grown adult has put full thought into all the options, I believe that this option should be it. Hospice would just be dragging an excrutiating death out, palliative care wouldn't come to the very end. She had all her faculties and her intelligence to say, "This is going to be done on my terms." I admire her for that.

    As a person who has lived through a myriad of potentially lethal diagnoses (ALWAYS seek a second opinion), I would agree with her decision. Her glioblastoma was so severe, and so painful, she would have no quality of life. To live like that, I'd take quality with my husband, daughter (those two are my life) along with my friends and Chicago family, and completing my bucket list before I'm no longer able to do so. If only she could have had children, but that was not to be.

    I'm ecstatic for her that she was able to complete her bucket list: Get married to an wonderful man, experience early married life before the tumor was diagnosed, go to Alaska and the Grand Canyon. She was surely blessed by those times.

    I admire Brittany for not hiding with her illness and bringing on criticism. She was one brave individual who fought to the end.

    My sympathies to her precious husband and mom.

    Brittany Maynard, may you finally rest in well deserved peace.

    ETA: These words are coming from a strong born-again Christian. If this comes up for a vote in Oklahoma, I'm not hesitating. I'd say let people walk a mile in her shoes, be it cancer or ALS. They probably wouldn't make it 50 feet.
    In Loving Memory of Timothy Houdek, October 22, 1969 - January 8, 2013

    My awesome dad: Harry Houdek, September 8, 1933 - November 20, 2013

    Words can't convey how much I miss you both. RIP with love.




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    Thanks Aviatrix. Some things should be above politics. This is definitely one of those. I just wish more people would forget the politics and the religion and just go with common sense and what they know is right in their heart.

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    Quote Originally Posted by StewartGilliganGriffin View Post
    I believe that's how the drugs work. I read that she passed peacefully in her sleep. So I'm assuming it's a sedative to knock you completely out and something to arrest the breathing while unconscious. Totally guessing.
    She took an overdose of a drug called Seconal, a barbituate. It's really not prescribed anymore and made only by a few pharmaceutical. It comes in a red capsule in which the person separates each capsule into a drink. It takes about 100 capsules to kill someone (Marylin Monroe had the equivalent of 97mg based on her autopsy. I'm trying to put my shoes into a person who has to separate 100 capsules into a drink. The person must do this themselves, and then be able to drink the mixture on their own with no assistance. They will supposedly pass off peacefully into a deep sleep followed by death.

    This is not like an overdose of powerful pain meds (dilaudid, demerol, morphine) because the side effects of the drug may hit before the person reaches unconsciousness, and then the lungs shut down while the person may be conscious. Terrible way to die. Fortunately she had doctors who could choose the drugs which made her die peacefully.

    One more story: I've been the "practitioner" side of things as a speech language pathologist. We evaluated some hearing and speech problems in a 9-year-old boy. The supervising audiologist looked into his ear and her face just dropped. A simple loss of hearing eval turned into a cholesteatoma. A tumor which originates in the brain and gradually grows down into the ear canal. Once it's reached that stage, surgery would be necessary but the overall prognosis was 10%. This was 20 years ago and I'm sure advances have been made in treatment. But knowing that we sent that boy off to a possible death sentence was excrutiating.
    In Loving Memory of Timothy Houdek, October 22, 1969 - January 8, 2013

    My awesome dad: Harry Houdek, September 8, 1933 - November 20, 2013

    Words can't convey how much I miss you both. RIP with love.




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    Rest in peace.
    "An Ye Harm None, Do What Ye Will" ~From the Wiccan Rede~


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    Thank you for the info about the meds... I was looking it up and kept finding different things.

    I am still so very torn about this. Yes I am Christian, but my Pastor says I am "New Age" (HaHa) so I do question a lot of the teachings... I am not even thinking of this as suicide, I am just thinking about (selfishly) how I would want to spend each and every moment I have left with my family. One More Day - One More Day....

    I lost my Daddy at 19 - what I wouldn't do to KNOW that was going to happen, I would cherish every moment and not want to leave his side. I know she didn't want to be a "burden", but when people love you they just want you in any way, shape or form. Like I said I know this sounds selfish, but I just couldn't do it.

    My friend Byron battled colon cancer, which turned into "all over cancer" (as he put it) for about 4 years. The doctors kept giving him a timeline and he said he didn't want to hear it. Yes he had good days and bad days, but he spent as much time with his kids and wife as he could. He was a shell of him self when he passed, but dammit it fought and stayed as long as he could - he was only 42 years old. What Byron or his family wouldn't give for One More Day...

    I'm sorry I really miss my friend... This woman just struck a nerve....
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    Quote Originally Posted by StewartGilliganGriffin View Post
    One word: Religion. And to be more precise Christianity. I'm not bashing religion. Just stating a fact that that is why the opposition. They feel if you take your own life you're taking away God's judgment. Suffering may be part of "His" plan and we shouldn't mess with that. That's what many think. And it says in the bible that suicide is wrong. And that's that for some people. My answer to those concerns is to politely tell them they are free to suffer and go out au natural if that is how they choose to do it, but why should everyone else have to suffer for your beliefs?
    Hi Stewie,

    Just a little friendly debate here, if you don't mind.

    When I attended church in another city, we would go door-to-door (I honestly hated that but it was part of a FAITH course, but I diverse). Some of them were first time attenders and did want more info on the church, and some homes we approached on a cold case basis. I remember one family whom a approached. They were friendly enough, but one man seemed a little put out.

    They politely listened to what we had to say, and then the man started off, "Let me ask you all a question. My son committed suicide a few years ago. We attended a church and the pastor said that he was going straight to hell because he committed the ultimate sin - rejecting God's will for his life" The man said that his son was active in church, went every time the door was open, and he considered himself a strong Christian. However, the son had bouts of depression and eventually committed suicide.

    About this time I spoke up and told him, depression is a medical issue. The chemicals of the brain are not functioning. I believe that a loving God would not send a person to hell with a brain disorder anymore than He'd send a person who had suffered from cancer, a stroke, a brain aneurysm.

    Then another 8 years later, my own brother committed suicide. Needless to say, I questioned my own beliefs, but I still firmly believe that my brother did not go to hell.

    Brittany stated that there was not one cell in her body that was suicidal. If someone came up to her with a magic wand with a cure, she'd take them up on it. I believe that Brittany ended her life with dignity, not suicide. Either way, she didn't deserve hell.

    OK, I know I tend to be long-winded, but here's the debate part: can you show me chapter and verse where it says that if someone commits suicide that they are going to hell? Not necessarily chapter and verse, but just stating how someone can go to hell by committing suicide. I do want to keep this very friendly, and if you wish to get back to me in PMs, that would be fine. If someone told you that a person would go to hell for suicide, I believe they told you wrong.

    I really hope this is not breaking the rules as I want this friendly, not confrontational.
    In Loving Memory of Timothy Houdek, October 22, 1969 - January 8, 2013

    My awesome dad: Harry Houdek, September 8, 1933 - November 20, 2013

    Words can't convey how much I miss you both. RIP with love.




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    Heya Aviatrix. I don't take your comments as offensive or confrontational at all. In fact I'd say we'd probably be on the same side of this debate. However it is taught that suicide is a sin. Here is an excerpt from this website: http://christianity.about.com/od/wha...le-Suicide.htm I would just post the link but it's longish and the relevant information is only a paragraph. I hope this isn't breaking rule 7. If it is let me know and I'll edit. And again I'm just playing Devil's advocate. Here is what she says about it...

    It would be difficult to argue that suicide is not a sin, for it is the taking of a human life, or to put it bluntly, murder. The Bible clearly expresses the sanctity of human life (Exodus 20:13). God is the author of life, thus, the giving and taking of life ought to remain in his hands (Job 1:21).
    In Deuteronomy 30:9-20, you can hear the heart of God crying out for his people to choose life:
    "Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live! You can make this choice by loving the Lord your God, obeying him, and committing yourself firmly to him. This is the key to your life..." (NLT)

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    That doesn't address hell. It simply states that suicide is a sin. And it's (the topic) an opinion not necessarily held by Christians across the board.
    Last edited by McMorbid; 11-04-2014 at 01:03 PM.
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    I think it should be an option everywhere and I am glad she is no long in pain or suffering. BUT at the same time I don't really agree with the whole phrase dying with dignity. I still feel in the end she committed suicide.

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    This breaks my heart. Hope she is happy and doing fun things now...without the confinement of mortality.

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    I would venture to opine that an impulsive suicide, like those done after a romantic breakup, or worse, killing someone ELSE (again, usually after a romantic breakup but sometimes those horrible family anihilations) would be more unforgiveable-- The latter kind, which involves robbing someone elses' life/ lives, being a straightaway ticket to Hell if you believe it exists, no matter what one's prior level of mental disturbance.

    As many of us have always said on this forum when something like that happens, take your own life if you feel you must and leave others out of it!!

    Other suicides, it's a case-by-case thing. The part that bothers me is the hurtful effect on the survivors, and that MUST be considered when determining the degree of "sin." For this example, consider this suicide as compared to Robin Williams's. Both were planned and mulled and agonized over for months, and eventually both mental and physical pain built up in both parties to what each considered the point of no return.

    The only real difference is that Mr. Williams apparently did not discuss his distress or intentions and so, surprised and shocked not just his family and friends, but millions of people. Ms. Maynard openly discussed her intentions for months beforehand, got her loved ones on board to the point they all relocated to Oregon, and save for some hesitation in the last week, did not really surprise anyone that she went through with it.

    Still, one has to hope that this doesn't spread beyond either-- I have stated that I worry for RW's children-- a bad reaction may be long in coming but it may yet come-- and though I hadn't heard that any of his fans have done this, it could just be that it was not publicized or linked to his death. In Ms. Maynard's case, it's too new and raw to know how HER family, friends, and blog followers may REALLY feel about her decision after they have some time to process it, or imitate it even if they are NOT as far gone in illness as she was.

    Also, remember that in the Netherlands, where assisted suicide has been legal and open for years, there have been allegations of abuse and brow-beating some people to "get it over with." And even if that is not a factor, will we discriminate between intractable, unrelievable PHYSICAL pain, and intractable, unrelievable MENTAL pain? SHOULD we discriminate, or balance out how much physical pain causes mental pain, and vice-versa?

    That is what's known as the "slippery slope". That is why, if this trend is to continue there MUST be stringent safeguards in place at all times., and even though the final decision is with the individual, he or she really does have to consider the long-term effects on those left behind-- unless, like the man who took cyanide in Connecticut, there really is NOBODY to leave behind. It isn't as simple as the decision to euthanize a sick and/or elderly animal, which is upsetting enough, and does cause great guilt in many pet owners, even if it seemed like the best choice at the time.
    Last edited by Linnie; 11-04-2014 at 07:38 PM.

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    Sad that she died but glad she took her way out
    on her terms and not some Doctor.

    PS. I think everybody shoud have free Health Care
    no matter what Country you live in.
    Carolyn(1958-2009) always in my heart.

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    I would like to have this choice if I was suffering from a terminal illness.

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    From a religious standpoint, I firmly believe that suicide does not mean automatic gateway to hell. People are constant sinners, from birth to death. If a murderer can repent of their sin and go to Heaven, then I think that someone who ended their life on their own terms to spare themselves an ending of indignity, pain, fear and hopelessness can also be forgiven.

    If people are saved by grace, and not by works, then they should not be condemned by works either.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DietCokeofEvil View Post
    From a religious standpoint, I firmly believe that suicide does not mean automatic gateway to hell. People are constant sinners, from birth to death. If a murderer can repent of their sin and go to Heaven, then I think that someone who ended their life on their own terms to spare themselves an ending of indignity, pain, fear and hopelessness can also be forgiven.

    If people are saved by grace, and not by works, then they should not be condemned by works either.
    You said this perfectly! I totally agree! While she took her own life, I see it differently. She made a decision on her own life based on not wanting to endure unbearable pain nor put her family through witnessing her heartbreaking decline. It may technically be a suicide, but not an impulsive decision. Some situations offer no good choices and she definitely was in that category. The September 11 victims who jumped out of the buildings had no good choices and I sure don't consider their deaths suicide either. IMO, people should be given the option to choose to end their lives if faced with what Brittany Maynard faced. She was going to die soon either way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mammy View Post
    You said this perfectly! I totally agree! While she took her own life, I see it differently. She made a decision on her own life based on not wanting to endure unbearable pain nor put her family through witnessing her heartbreaking decline. It may technically be a suicide, but not an impulsive decision. Some situations offer no good choices and she definitely was in that category. The September 11 victims who jumped out of the buildings had no good choices and I sure don't consider their deaths suicide either. IMO, people should be given the option to choose to end their lives if faced with what Brittany Maynard faced. She was going to die soon either way.
    You are absolutely right here. Besides is it really a Christian thing to prohibit someone to end his or her life and force them to suffer a lot of pain just because you believe it is a sin?
    Some compare Elvis to God.. I mean He is good, but He is no Elvis

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    Quote Originally Posted by McMorbid View Post
    She went through with it. http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/...storiesfromnpr

    Her suffering is past.
    Thank you for the update. I am so glad she is at peace and was able to do it on her terms instead of suffering. I will be happy to see this in all states. Prayers and good wishes to her family.

    I also agree with Mammy's assessment that what she did is not a sin. If God is the graceful God He is supposed to be, then certainly He understands her plight.

    ""It's a mop with a tongue! Can you imagine the dingleberries?" - Mammy


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    This is so sad!

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    She's gone now, isn't she? I think this whole thing is sad. I just think it's so fucked up that we get these awful sicknesses and feel like we would even have to make these "lesser of two evils" decisions in the first place. Ad what's more that we sometimes have to make them quick, but still keep the ones we love I mind. But, I guess that's life (and death) for you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seaghan_ View Post
    She's gone now, isn't she? I think this whole thing is sad. I just think it's so fucked up that we get these awful sicknesses and feel like we would even have to make these "lesser of two evils" decisions in the first place. Ad what's more that we sometimes have to make them quick, but still keep the ones we love I mind. But, I guess that's life (and death) for you.
    That's a very good description, "lesser of two evils." The poor woman was going to die soon regardless of which decision she made. I can't blame her for wanting to go on her own terms. I think it was very selfless and loving on the part of her family members to be supportive of her decision because it had to be hard to come to terms with on their part. Her choice also spared them a great deal of turmoil by not having to watch her deteriorate rapidly and suffer unbearable pain. Most of us have had loved ones, friends, coworkers, or classmates who have suffered and died from cancer and it's agonizing to watch someone go through it and feel helpless. When you think about them after they pass away, it's impossible to remember them without thinking about all they went through before they died. Brittany's loved ones won't have that image in their minds. Her decision might not sit well with some people, but she had a right to choose what she felt like was the best decision for herself and family. I think she was very brave.

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