A Gentle Death
"I have known Marilynne Sequin since 1980 ... Her dedication to the right of a terminal patient to choose to die has been unswerving over these years, whilst her compassion and nursing skills make her one of the outstanding persons in the field."
Derek Humphry, author of "Final Exit"
For many years, Marilynne Seguin, a registered nurse, listened with growing frustration to the requests of terminally-ill patients who pleaded to be allowed to die. Like most healthcare professionals, she has been trained to believe that it was her duty to prolong life at all costs. But repeated experience over thirty years, and her own encounters with rheumatic fever and cancer, gave her a different perspective. She now provides advice and emotional support to people for whom life has become an intolerable burden.
In A Gentle Death, Marilynne Seguin draws on her experience with hundreds of seriously ill and dying people in exploring the moral and legal implications of euthanasia. She offers useful advice on working with doctors and other health-care professionals, dealing with unresolved personal conflicts and involving family members and friends in the decision-making process. To ensure understanding of the legal implications of assisted suicide Cheryl Smith discusses many aspects of U.S. law, including living wills, power of attorney, the Patient Self-Determination Act and Do Not Resuscitate orders.
The many cases used to illustrate aspects of the argument for the right to die are variously heartbreaking, inspiring and provocative. It is these stories, some painful to read, all highly personal, that place A Gentle Death at the heart of the current, controversial debate.