Euthanasia for physical diseases is NOT the same as suicide for mental illnesses.


My friend, valuable human being, intelligent blogger, hilarious wit, Ulla recently committed suicide. I know she was in an unremitting depression, I know she was in an enormous amount of pain, but every fiber of my being revolted against the idea of her suicide, against the idea of the loss of her.

When someone has terminal cancer, and has been reduced to 30 pounds in weight, have had their whole small intestine and colon resected and are living with a colostomy bag. Also the chemotherapy has caused them to become blind, and the cancer, despite repeated surgeries, has spread everywhere, causing them unbearable pain. This I whole heartedly agree is a case for euthanasia. This poor person is not going to recover after having reached this state and keeping them around to suffer is quite unconscionable. Euthanasia here, is very appropriate.

A person has a mental illness, they are in a severe depression, they are in terrible emotional pain, and physical pain. They are constantly thinking of ending it all. they are constantly thinking of committing suicide. Is this the same as euthanasia due to the above cancer case? NO! It is not. Here the body has not given out. Here even though the depressed person thinks there is no hope, there is hope! This person may commit suicide today and tomorrow, a miraculous new drug that cures depression may be put on the market. So that if this person would have waited one more day, their problems would have been solved. People with mental illness who are suicidal do not have to die. Their kidneys are in good working order, their livers are in good working order, their weight is normal, nothing is literally killing them, except their thoughts and feelings. Yes these are valid, yes these count. But they are not absolute. It doesn’t have to be this way.

Suicide really, truly is a permanent solution to a temporary problem! Even if the temporary duration might be very long.

I know some of my friends have said that Ulla deserved peace and to be reunited with her mother. Well, as an atheist, all I think she got was nothing, simply not existing anymore.

Please, suicide is not a valid treatment for a mental illness. Our feelings, our thoughts get hijacked by depression, making us feel hopeless, worthless, loveless, full of pain, and wanting to end it all. But it does not have to be this way. I would rather be put into a coma for a few months, like they do with physical illnesses and then be brought out if and when a better medication has been discovered. Who knows, just the act of putting me in a coma may rewire my brain and take me out of the depression.

Please, don’t give up! Hang on, no matter how much pain you are feeling, things can get better, if you are here. They can’t if you have taken your own life.

I so wish Ulla had not done what she did. She deserved to be happy and to live, I wish someone would have helped talk her out of it. A young, vibrant, intelligent, funny, lovely woman. Suicide robbed us of her.