Death is an inevitable fact of life, but it is often hard to talk about. In over 63 countries across the globe, people gather at Death Cafes to discuss the subject of dying over coffee and cake. Welcome to the first virtual Death Cafe, where our guests reflect on the controversial end of life practices of euthanasia and assisted suicide.
I traveled to the Netherlands, a country known for being open-minded about life, even when it comes to death. Euthanasia and assisted suicide have been practiced legally since 2002 and illegally for decades prior. I spoke to individuals who are impacted by this practice both personally and professionally. These are their stories.
Suicide Handbook Gets Doctor Deregistered
The Peaceful Pill Handbook contains detailed information about various suicide methods. It also covers other end-of-life topics such as how to write a will and what to do after a loved one's suicide.
The first version of The Peaceful Pill Handbook was published in the U.S. in 2006. It is updated each year by Nitschke and Stewart and is available in six languages: English, German, Dutch, Italian, French and Spanish.
Nitschke's view is that death is a human right for any adult with sound mental capacity, whether they are terminally ill, suffering mentally or even to avoid a prison sentence. He believes that if a person truly wants to end their own life, they will do it with or without this book.
“I don’t want to have people jumping off high buildings or hanging themselves," Nitschke said. "That’s a grim and horrible death. A lot of what drives that is most people don’t have access to information.”