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View Diary: Why End of Life Counseling is Imperative (256 comments)

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  •  I don't know what your age is, but (6+ / 0-)

    at my age, 63, it is an issue that so many friends of mine have had to deal with recently, or will have to deal with in the near future. We are at the age when we are losing our parents. Our parents are mostly of that generation that did not talk about these things. It is not until they see a friend or a loved one suffereing on life support that they even give it some consideration at all, and sometimes that is too late to put it in writing. Those who have the forethought to put this down in writing before this situation arises, makes the transition from life to death so much easier on their loved ones. That is the simple fact behind this.
    To have some fucking asshole like Sarah Palin turn this whole thing on it's head and include her downs syndrome baby in this section of the bill, is stupid at the least. However, I don't think it was just her stupidity that motivated her. I think she saw a political opportunity to jump on with her pro-life agenda and wanted to be the face of it. The sad facts are, there are those who actually value the input of Palin and hang on her every word as the absolute truth. I think like the "screamers" are doing to Democratic Congresspeople, someone should ask Ms. Palin, "Did you fucking read the bill, did you fucking understand what you read?"
    If these jerks would just use the brain God gave them, they would understand there are no "Death Panels", and paying for end of life consulatations is a far cry from "pulling the plug on granny". What this bill does is actually enable granny to pull the plug on herself, if that is her desire. What it also does, is allows granny to live as long as she wants with all the medical help there is to offer, if that is what she wants to do. What this section of this bill does is protect Granny from her children and grandchildren. It allows Granny to remain in control of Granny. As a Granny, I don't think that is such a bad thing. Perhaps we can turn this idiocy around, and appeal to the independence in these seniors. They don't want to be a burdon on their children, they don't want to be treated like children, they still and until the moment of death want to have control over their own lives. So much is taken out of their hands when their bodies age, so much control is lost. I saw it happen with my Mom the older she got and the more and more her body broke down the more and more she became dependant upon me, the more and more dependant on me she became the more and more demanding she became, because she was terrified of losing control. When you reach a certian age, what you fear most is loss of control. In some cases you are too old, sick and weak to fight back so you go along with the program, and do what you are told. Little by little you lose some of your much treasured independence and with that your dignity. This allows you to still have that control, independence and dignity until the very end of your life. We allowed the opposition to control this part of the debate and misuse it as they please, as a political issue to be used against us and against health care reform, we need to reframe this and do it on our terms and appeal to the very real fears shared by Seniors across the country. I think a good move would be to tell the seniors that Medicare will not only pay for these consultations with your doctor, but will also include payment for the clergy person of your choice when making these decisions. Some of these older folks seem to find comfort in their religious beliefs as they age. To allow them to discuss this issue with the clergy person of choice would go a long way to shut up the pro-lifers and force them to realize this is a good thing for them, not something to be feared. Sometimes even those of us who are so opposed to religious organizations, must admit that sometimes we need to align with them and consider the religious beleifs of some. If we frame it in a way that proves we are not seeking to put people to death, but only seeking to allow them to face death on their own terms, I think might put to rest all of this ridicouls opposition.

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