One healthy British woman has chosen to end her life at Lifecircle in Basel, Switzerland, with the former nurse deciding that she was no longer enthusiastic when it came to gardening or dinner parties, and because she was suffering from tinnitus.
She decided to take her own life at the age of 75, after feeling that she was beginning to go downhill and no longer wanted to live, with the fear of becoming old too much for her.
Gil Pharaoh claimed that she knew the reasons were ‘comparatively trivial’ but that they mattered to her, and that while her husband of 25 years and kids supported her decision, it wasn’t one they necessarily agreed with, claiming that her daughter Caron, who is also a nurse, ‘struggled’ with the decision.
She has written two books on old age and caring for the elderly, with the publications entitled: How to Manage Family Illness at Home” and “Careers in Caring.”
In one of her books, she wrote:
I watched my own mother become demented. Had there been a pill available at the time, I would gladly have put her out of her misery. I do not intend to follow that path myself.
Before her death, she also told the Sunday Times that she had ‘so many friends with partners who, plainly, are a liability. I know you shouldn’t say that but I have this mental picture in my head of all you need to do, at my age, is break a hip and you are likely to go very much downhill from that.’
The debate over assisted suicide and if it should be legalised in the UK rages on, but you can see how those who oppose the idea would have an issue with a healthy woman choosing to end her life purely on the basis that she did not want to get old, with the majority of people probably finding that hard to swallow.