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HiroProtagonist
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(06-12-2011, 05:00 PM)
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http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2011...o-end-his-life



Originally Posted by Ben Dowell

Sir Terry Pratchett, the fantasy writer who was diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2008, said yesterday he had started the formal process that could lead to his own assisted suicide at the Dignitas clinic in Switzerland.

Pratchett, whose BBC2 film about the subject of assisted suicide is to be shown on BBC2 tomorrow, revealed he had been sent the consent forms requesting a suicide by the clinic and planned to sign them imminently.

"The only thing stopping me [signing them] is that I have made this film and I have a bloody book to finish," he said during a question-and-answer session following a screening at the Sheffield documentary festival Doc/Fest.

He said that he decided to start the process after making the film Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die, which shows the moment of death of a motor neurone sufferer, millionaire hotel owner Peter Smedley.

Pratchett, the creator of the Discworld novels who was 60 when he was diagnosed, said his decision to start the formal process did not necessarily mean he was going to take his own life.

According to Dignitas, 70% of people who sign the forms do not go through with taking their own lives.

Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die

Edit: added link to the documentary
Last edited by HiroProtagonist; 06-16-2011 at 09:24 AM.
FStop7
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:04 PM)
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That takes a lot of guts... so much time to contemplate your death, I can see why so many people back out. But for those whose suffering is unbearable, it's cruel not to let them make that choice.
The Technomancer
card-carrying scientician
(06-12-2011, 05:04 PM)
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I'm sad, but I can't say I'd blame him.
Boozeroony
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:12 PM)
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That is such a courageous thing to do.
Agnostic
but believes in Chael
(06-12-2011, 05:14 PM)
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I would do the same thing after watching my grandfather suffer with Alzheimer's disease.
Foliorum Viridum
Banned
(06-12-2011, 05:14 PM)
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Really sad :( I love Discworld so much.
crowphoenix
rising from soot, not ashes
(06-12-2011, 05:15 PM)
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Well, it's time for me to reread my Discworld novels. I'll miss this crazy bastard.
Dali
(06-12-2011, 05:16 PM)
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I thought they just voted to ban assisted suicide for non residents. Or by "starting the process" does he mean getting resident/citizen status?

Edit: nvrmind. The swiss people were apparently overwhelmingly in favor of it and voted against the ban.
Last edited by Dali; 06-12-2011 at 05:20 PM.
madara
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:17 PM)
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Sorry to hear this. It will be his choice and he should be supported either way. Its amazing though how night and day this subject is here on neogaf when its celebrity wanting to do it over a normal person.
PumpkinPie
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:17 PM)
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How do you know when the right time to die is with Alzheimer's...?
Chao
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:21 PM)
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This makes me really sad
The Technomancer
card-carrying scientician
(06-12-2011, 05:22 PM)
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Originally Posted by madara

Sorry to hear this. It will be his choice and he should be supported either way. Its amazing though how night and day this subject is here on neogaf when its celebrity wanting to do it over a normal person.

Not a matter of celebrity versus normal person to me.
A.)He has alzheimers. There's no two ways about it, his life is going to deteriorate
B.)He's old. He's lived his life, done great things, had experiences, and now he's making the decision to step out of it. He's not some hormonal teenager or a bummed out thirty-something who thinks that they have nothing to live for.
Kurtofan
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:25 PM)
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I'm sad :(
I hope he finds peace.
DKehoe
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(06-12-2011, 05:27 PM)
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Fuck, that's tragic. What a horrible thing to have to contemplate. I met him once and he was really nice. Going to be a terrible loss for the world.
Not that I'm against people having the right to choose.
Callo Merlose
Banned
(06-12-2011, 05:31 PM)
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Originally Posted by Johnny and the Dead

Johnny hesitated. I could turn around now, he thought, and go home. And if I turn around, Iíll never find out what happens next. Iíll go away and Iíll never know why it happened now and what would have happened next. Iíll go away and grow up and get a job and get married and have children and become a granddad and retire and take up bowling and go into Sunshine Acres and watch daytime television until I die, and Iíll never know. And he thought: Perhaps I did. Perhaps that all happened and then, just when I was dying, some kind of angel turned up and said would you like a wish? And I said, yes, Iíd like to know what would have happened if I hadnít run away, and the angel said, Okay, you can go back. And here I am, back again. I canít let myself down. The world waited.

This is what made me love this man's work. I hope to see him after he dies. :)
SorchaR
Junior Member
(06-12-2011, 05:32 PM)
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It is sad, but I can understand why he's doing this. I hope he still has a few years in him though becausehe's a great writer and a great man. He will be sorely missed once he's gone :(
DICKS AHOY
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:33 PM)
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Met him years ago when he visited my school. Really nice and incredibly funny; it's going to be sad to see him go. His books were one of the defining parts of my high school days.
sixteen-bit
Member
(06-12-2011, 05:39 PM)
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That's pretty depressing
CleverGirl
Junior Member
(06-12-2011, 09:29 PM)
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I'm sure Death will come for Pratchett himself.
Lord British
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(06-12-2011, 09:37 PM)
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Bugger it.
Gaborn
Gaborn News:
Penetrating Your Worldô
(06-12-2011, 09:38 PM)
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I'm a huge Discworld fan boy so I'm sad, but I completely respect his decision.
Messypandas
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(06-12-2011, 09:42 PM)
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This is devastating. Fuck Alzheimers, seriously.
Sotha Sil
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(06-12-2011, 09:43 PM)
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I would do the same. I think.

So sad right now.
Uncle
Dave's other lieutenant
(06-12-2011, 09:46 PM)
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Damn. :(
John Dunbar
Banned
(06-12-2011, 09:48 PM)

Originally Posted by CleverGirl

I'm sure Death will come for Pratchett himself.

Or maybe it'll be Scrofula.
Pau
Member
(06-12-2011, 09:49 PM)
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I understand why he's doing this and agree 100% with it but damn it if it doesn't make me terribly sad. The world is losing such a talented, brilliant person.
crowphoenix
rising from soot, not ashes
(06-12-2011, 09:49 PM)
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This man is my idol. I would give my feet to be able to write like him. His death is going to hurt more than any famous death, but damn it, if the man doesn't have guts to face death head on and meet old blue eyes before he slips into the unknown.
marrec
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(06-12-2011, 09:52 PM)
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Originally Posted by Messypandas

This is devastating. Fuck Alzheimers, seriously.

Whenever it was first announced I was so pissed off, If Sir Pratchett wants to go through with this then I will be indeed devastated, but it is his decision to make. I selfishly hope he finds some way to lessen his suffering so we get a few more books from him....
anaron
Member
(06-12-2011, 09:53 PM)
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Bless him. :(
Uncle
Dave's other lieutenant
(06-12-2011, 09:53 PM)
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Originally Posted by crowphoenix

This man is my idol. I would give my feet to be able to write like him. His death is going to hurt more than any famous death, but damn it, if the man doesn't have guts to face death head on and meet old blue eyes before he slips into the unknown.

Apparently he got a coat of arms and the motto is Noli Timere Messorum (Don't fear the reaper).

Edit: here it is.

Last edited by Uncle; 06-12-2011 at 10:06 PM.
Warrior_Keoni
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(06-12-2011, 09:54 PM)
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This man deserves a medal, not for the suicide in reality to accept his own mortality.
TurboLibre
Fifty feet tall, balls of steel, fires fricking laser beams from his nipples...
(06-12-2011, 10:20 PM)
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This is a strange issue, but if he has Alzheimers can he be considered in the right mindset to make such a decision? Or do they do tests to make sure he's somehow mentally fit at the moment he decides to go through with it?
Qwomo
Junior Member
(06-12-2011, 10:21 PM)
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:(
SapientWolf
Member
(06-12-2011, 10:27 PM)
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I'm sure many people have already seen it, but a picture says a thousand words:

http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/200...IDESHOW_1.html

That kind of mental decline has to be an especially horrifying process for an intellectual.
Charmicarmicat
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(06-12-2011, 10:32 PM)
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Originally Posted by Tkawsome

This is a strange issue, but if he has Alzheimers can he be considered in the right mindset to make such a decision? Or do they do tests to make sure he's somehow mentally fit at the moment he decides to go through with it?

He's in full control of all his faculties right now I believe, so this is probably why he is choosing to get everything in order before his condition deteriorates. There was an interview in the Radio Times where he discussed choosing the right time, and the impossible question of when to actually do it.
Particle Physicist
between a quark and a baryon
(06-12-2011, 10:34 PM)
:(
dofry
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(06-12-2011, 10:42 PM)
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Originally Posted by Tkawsome

This is a strange issue, but if he has Alzheimers can he be considered in the right mindset to make such a decision? Or do they do tests to make sure he's somehow mentally fit at the moment he decides to go through with it?

There are three basic steps for Alzheimer's: mild, moderate and severe. With milder syptoms you can function pretty well like before, you just sometimes forget e.g. a step in a process, or repeat things. It doesn't mean that you can't function as a normal person in day to day things. He clearly seems capable of taking care of his own business until he deteriorates into worse status later on. That's what the decision now is for.
It's heartaching to watch people with severe Alzheimer's and it's a huge burden to the family members too, so I can see the logic in his decision.
Carl
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(06-12-2011, 10:44 PM)
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Muchos respect to anyone who would be able to do this.
swordfishtrombones
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(06-12-2011, 10:44 PM)
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I was very sad to hear about his diagnosis. I've met him only once, which lasted maybe 10 seconds, so I officially I should have no emotional bond with him at all. Nevertheless, the Discworld books have been a part of my life and I will miss the yearly dose of sharp-witted satire (these books transcend the genre of fantasy).

Much respect to him to be so open about his potential assisted suicide. Whatever your moral/religious stance is in life, I hope you agree that this is a more humane way to go than to suffer from the disease until the very end. Or, ever worse, to have it end in some hotel room or in front of a train. I wish him strength in the time to come.
e_i
Member
(06-13-2011, 07:18 PM)
This is so horrible. He's so smart...and to be brought down by a disease and forced to kill himself.
Combichristoffersen
Combovers don't work when there is no hair
(06-13-2011, 07:25 PM)
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Very sad, but I definitely see why he'd rather choose to end his life than let Alzheimers take him
crowphoenix
rising from soot, not ashes
(06-13-2011, 07:26 PM)
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Originally Posted by Uncle

Apparently he got a coat of arms and the motto is Noli Timere Messorum (Don't fear the reaper).

Edit: here it is.

[IMG]http://i.imgur.com/Cjenh.jp

Thanks for finding that. It'll be the background on my phone.
JaseC
gave away the keys to the kingdom.
(06-13-2011, 07:28 PM)
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Sad, but dare I say inspirational (I mean, I don't believe I could accept my death so readily).

I feel weird. :(
Last edited by JaseC; 06-13-2011 at 07:37 PM.
ruuk
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(06-13-2011, 07:46 PM)
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I hope this is a hoax.
chris121580
Member
(06-13-2011, 07:55 PM)
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Did anyone else watch the documentary on assisted suicide on HBO? One of the saddest things I've ever watched and extremely informative
Kai Dracon
Writing a dinosaur space opera symphony
(06-13-2011, 08:12 PM)
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As weird as this sounds, I hope everything works out for him - and by that I mean that it achieves the intent of salvaging a measure of dignity out of the situation.

Typical attitudes over death often seem to have grown out of the ancient human fear of death and confusion at what death is. Some cultures have taken control of death to some degree at least. I can't help but see being able to take charge of what death means to one's self as an ultimate sign of maturity.

You can't deal with life until you can deal with death.
Clydefrog
Member
(06-13-2011, 08:13 PM)
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Originally Posted by chris121580

Did anyone else watch the documentary on assisted suicide on HBO? One of the saddest things I've ever watched and extremely informative

Fuck, I watched that one day after work. I was weeping so much during it.
JoeBoy101
Member
(06-13-2011, 08:16 PM)
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Currently dealing with a loved one with Alzheimer's. That fucking disease is worse than cancer to me. Safe Travels, Mr. Pratchett. Here and where ever you shall go after.
Yaboosh
Member
(06-13-2011, 08:22 PM)
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Does alzheimers cause any physical suffering or is it mostly mental/emotional suffering?
nelsonroyale
Member
(06-13-2011, 08:22 PM)
Damn! I have lot of respect for Pratchet?

Gemmel, Jordan and Now Pratchet? Is their a curse on successful fantasy writers or something?

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