When Is Assisted Suicide Okay? Twins Choose Death Over Blindness

by Moin Uddin Ahmed Tipu

Two deaf twins living in Belgium choose to die after learning they would also lose their eyesight. Unlike many who have chosen to end their lives, these men were not going to be killed by their illness. By already being deaf, and now blind, they said they would suffer too much emotional pain to make living worth it. This argument adds a whole new wrinkle in the right-to-die debate. Trace takes a look.

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39 comments

The One True King May 12, 2017 - 1:29 AM

Living with a mind that wants to die is torture, so forcing someone to live basically means torturing them

Period Comma May 20, 2017 - 11:46 PM

I'm literally sick of religion ruining our lives.

Paixdanslemonde Alg June 19, 2017 - 11:09 PM

they should stop suicide tourist

Robert Rush June 30, 2017 - 1:43 PM

No. suicide is never okay even if you are terminally ill , its not ok because only God decides when you die. God decides when we are born and when we die. we decide how we live in between birth and death. so let God decide the day you die and how. life is a precious gift from God and we have no right to end it

Robert Rush July 11, 2017 - 11:43 AM

God gave you life and he has a plan for you life. he decides when you are born and when you die. that dash in between birth and death you decide that. chose life because after death you will stand before a holy God and have to answer to him all the choices that you made in life and I sure would not want to have to answer to him about a suicide that was committed. please keep your life. God has provided help in life whenever you need it

Robert Rush July 11, 2017 - 11:55 AM

Suicide takes a life , God gives it. suicide is not good at all , but God is nothing but good. suicide is a lie straight from the pit of hell ,God is the truth straight from the glorious place call heaven. suicide says that there is no hope , God says you have hope in my son Jesus. I say that God loves you very much and he cares deeply about you and that's the truth. chose life because yours matters very much. God bless you.

Charlotte Hoffmann July 29, 2017 - 11:05 AM

I worked as a hospice nurse for many years. I have watched death in so many ways. Terrible terrible deaths of people in sever pain. The families want this and why should you suffer? As a part of the health care field I say why not as a Christian is it moral? I'm choosing to say I'm a Christian who wants to save my family from pain and I will ask for forgiveness to GOD. I will be the one who faces the consequences.

Abiy BattleSpell August 21, 2017 - 5:56 AM

i couldnt imagine being both blind and deaf…. tht be like some endless void shit wouldnt it? stuk with ur own thoughts?

Jennifer Carrico September 12, 2017 - 6:23 AM

Suicide is a choice!

Cady Wilson November 8, 2017 - 9:29 PM

You either believe in a right to one's own body or in autonomy or you don't, there isn't much of a middle ground. If you're in the much pain or are terminally ill, that decision to end your life is yours, not mine.

9 Ball November 11, 2017 - 10:20 AM

I personally think that assisted suicide is only okay if the person pleading death is physically unable to end their own life. Suicide is already bad enough for their loved ones, nobody wants their friends or family to die. But if you're asking someone to kill you, that puts a large burden and a lot of guilt on them, while adding on to the grief. They could possibly suicide themselves if their will to live is not strong enough.

dystoniaify February 14, 2018 - 11:00 AM

I'm only 37, with untreatable Parkinsonism and dystonia due to an anoxic brain injury, chronic pain, loss of walking, and am now going blind. Paul Ryan and the repugs just passed a trillion dollar cut to medicare, ssdi, ssdi, and medicaid over the next ten years. This will ensure that I will be blind (preventable with $$$$), in a wheelchair, in extreme pain and depression, and in a nursing home at a young age. Our society has to make a choice between bettering the quality of life for people like myself or to legalize assisted suicide to people who have untreatable, degenerative, lifelong conditions even if they aren't terminal. Instead, the 'pro embryo' movement is choosing hell on earth for people like myself.

Gerardo Salas April 8, 2018 - 1:46 PM

Yes. It’s not only an act of cowardice but an un natural act.
I can’t believe they want to justify homosexuality on the grounds that “it is natural” and promote more so-called natural diets, yet they oppose natural death.
Oh the ironies of Zionism

W April 10, 2018 - 10:00 AM

Its illegal to kill myself? Oh sorry I thought this was America!

Kame Hameha May 11, 2018 - 5:39 AM

What I never understood with this topic, is who is keeping anyone from dying? We all have the choice to die. It's not that difficult to commit suicide… I could name hundreds of quick, easy ways to go. I don't really have a stance on assisted suicide, but I do find it silly that people say we are holding people back from dying. I just don't see how that's the case. If you really want to die, you have options and no one can stop you.

Victor Ruben Navarro Cortes July 10, 2018 - 1:59 AM

why doesnt exist euthanasia for people with chronical depression and emotional suffering?
I want to end my life, i dont want treatments, i dont want to be in an institution, i want to end this.

Donna Ryhter August 3, 2018 - 9:49 AM

Don’t stop us!!! You Evil government

E!Izabeth Evans August 15, 2018 - 7:08 AM

I think like a lot of people that the right to die should not be viewed as murder, if people helping avery sick person to die they are treated as murders!! The young man doing this video was speaking as if he was afraid hat he be forced to one day being told he was going to die because someone thought he looked very ill , reading that back it doesn't make much sense somebody might understand what I am trying to say. If ever I reach a time in my life where I am so I'll , or infirm that I have to rely on other people to look after me like a baby , without dignity , I will choose to die , I know many people will be o.k. with others have the task of caring for them,we are all different. I have worked with elderly people whose quality of life is very dismal, some of the people have indicated to me that they no longer wish to live. Doctors should be allowed to assist them in having a peaceful death without being prosecuted.

Spyderz0310 October 24, 2018 - 2:48 PM

When you bring "God" into the mix Dr.Kevorkian said it best.
He was told he was playing god …its ok to transplant an organ but not let someone assist someone else take their life.
I mean opiods do the trick in high doses.People should be able to chose how to live and die.

Miracle122485 January 19, 2019 - 10:56 AM

I wouldn't want to live either if I was blind and deaf!

Flaintheblaine February 19, 2019 - 11:28 PM

Like abortion, if it isn't allowed legally, people will still do it. They still might commit suicide if they are determined to.

The Bengal Dragon February 23, 2019 - 12:53 AM

There is no confusion about this. Those people (with all due respect, COWARDS) TOOK THE VERY EASY WAY OUT. One should've asked them to take a look around them and see how so many others lived with deafness and eventual blindness. In fact, there are those who live with WORSEE CONDITIONS! They still live, they still fight. They still make themselves useful.There is a story of an electrician from Bangladesh, who is fully blind, yet he can do electrical work, as long as someone just tells him which wire is what. I CANNOT ADVOCATE FOR WEAKNESS AND COWARDNESS.

Howard Stern February 25, 2019 - 6:37 AM

People that voted for the Trumpeter should all be Euthanized

NJSMKMMS March 9, 2019 - 4:05 PM

Yes absolutely we should all have that right.

The reason people who are allowed the medication then don't use it has a very simple explanation. What many people fear most about the death process is having to suffer extremely painful or frightening symptoms, being a burden to others, other people having to do the most intimate parts of what is usually self care, not being able to communicate or have having no self autonomy, before the end finally comes. How it is in states and countries that do not allow the option, peoples hands are effectively forced. They are forced into doing it while they can physically do it themselves, which could be a very long time before a more natural death comes. They must do it while they can get the medication or other ways of ending their own life, themselves. Also before their family and friends have any knowledge of what they are about to do, in the case someone might try to stop them or if they don't do something to stop them they could be legally implicated in the death.

If it remains illegal it forces people to act earlier than they might otherwise feel comfortable in doing, or at all. They may also use different ways and means that may end up being unsuccessful. That may in fact prolong or worsen the suffering.They cannot peacefully pass away surrounded by loved ones.

Given the guarantee of being able to go if and when the person themselves decides to, may very well stop so many people feeling the need to end their own lives at all. It's not about the death its self, we are all going to die at some stage, it's about the choice of when it happens that is the issue.

ILive2Rescue April 16, 2019 - 5:35 AM

I’ll leave you with this, if humans are allowed to end the life of an animal to stop their suffering, why the hell can’t we do the same thing for someone from our own species, including ourselves? 🤔
Imho, it really is that simple. 🤯

Human Being April 22, 2019 - 4:54 AM

Im an advocate of the "right to die" movement. And the Oregon paradox is real. Im from Uruguay.

peterlhs18 hansen August 11, 2019 - 10:26 PM

You cant stop people who want to end their life. You intervene it's much more painful for these people . Many of us just want to end our lives in some dignity. SUCIDES IS OUR ONLY WAY OUT

Dean Rao September 15, 2019 - 6:02 AM

Of course they should have the right. And as humanity and medicine have supposedly progressed so far now it's only humane that they be offered assistance to do so as painlessly as our advanced state of medicine allows. In this case it's a particularly rational decision.

Even knowing the option is available should they get to the point would be some comfort to anyone who is facing a future that they dread.

Paul Anthony Donahue December 29, 2019 - 10:41 PM

We stop people from committing suicide / euthanasia because we don't want them to be at peace, we'd rather they stick around with the rest of us in this miserable fuked up world. We actually treat dogs and cats better in the end… It comes down to selfishness and money.

ibrahim mindl June 6, 2020 - 6:43 PM

Women: it's my body my choice I want abortion = us ya that's okay
People want to die: it's my body my choice I want to commit suicide = us no wtf that's not exabtibal

Beata Anna Nowak June 18, 2020 - 7:38 AM

People that wanted to live were murdered, pigs, cows, dogs, fish and poultry have no choice

2quick June 28, 2020 - 11:36 AM

It’s always okay, this shouldn’t have to be a question in the first place.

Future Eyes Only August 5, 2020 - 1:55 PM

Nothing can break the love of twin brothers or sisters.

P R little B November 4, 2020 - 11:53 PM

If you support abortion but not for suicide, you're a hypocrite.

Bryan Walker November 15, 2020 - 3:54 PM

I have not been diagnosed with a terminal illness. But I am 81 years old and have done all I want to achieve. My lovely dog, my best friend in my youth, was taken to the vet and given Nembutal for a gentle end. Why is the same end not available for humans? The planet has a major problem of a human population explosion with an insufficient number of young people to care for them. We did not ask to come here but why do we not have the freedom to go? We should have euthanasia clinics for normal people who just want to die, instead of waiting for painful terminal sickness before having to locate a legal place to go.

Stephen Kaake November 20, 2020 - 6:04 AM

if everyone had the right to a peaceful end it would be better for everyone, just being able to talk about your problems makes them better

D Belle December 16, 2020 - 1:47 AM

Religion should only have a say in the life of their adult followers 🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄🙄

Mark David Mallorca March 29, 2021 - 9:43 PM

We are forced to live in suffering on pain, abuse, traumas, why couldn’t we just end it?

Anonymous November 13, 2021 - 9:24 AM

The bottom line is the "Individual freedom"

In other words, the debate ultimately is about: Individual freedom vs social health