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Do you have an 'Exit' Stratagy?

Posted by on Jul. 10, 2012 at 12:03 AM
  • 37 Replies

 I read an interesting article about a man who is watching his mother die from dementia. He is in his 50's and has decided NOT to sign up for the type of coverage his mother has.  She was starting to show symptoms of dementia when he heart was failing. In her 80's they performed surgery on her that saved her life, but then she slippd away into dementia. To the point that she cannot speak and makes gutteral sounds that border the sound of agony.  He quipped on how this generation of baby boomers is taking care of and watching their parents slip and be saved when really, ethically they should be allowed to Exit.  Touching on the quality of life topics etc. He made some very good points about the fact that we need to stop saving our elderly from natural cause death and let them go.

Do you have an Exit Stratagy in your will? Or one in your head? Are you for "Quality of Life" over longevity?

I myself, do not want to be a prisioner in a body that is being made to function when it should not be. I view my body like an old car. If I get to the point where something else keeps breaking after you just fixed the last thing, it's time for me to go to that junk yard in the sky. Gone but not Forgotten.


The Article is called "Dementia: the ending no one wants."

by on Jul. 10, 2012 at 12:03 AM
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by Bronze Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 9:48 AM

When I was younger and single I rented a room adjacent to a cemetary and conversations like this were frequent... unusual considering our age but instgated by the surroundings.  I am also on a rescue squad and have seen people with DNR orders (do not resuscitate) and those patitients I thought needed them but didn't have them, so I planned for a DNR when I ever got around to writing my will.

However, fast forward ot today and I am 33 with a young daughter and two other children who need me around and a DNR or living will is just not an option for me at this stage in my life.

by Platinum Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 10:11 AM

DH and i a calling it quits when we reach about 85.  No firm plan yet but we decided that we don't want to sit around getting sicker and sicker waiting to die.

by Ruby Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 10:34 AM

 Yes, I have a plan. My mom does too and we will do whatever we can to respect her wishes when that time comes.


by Ruby Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 10:36 AM

 Altho...sometimes I do wonder about the value to the children of the dementia patient. What about the value and worth the family of the patient garners by, pardon my words here, the body still being here?

I am not sure how to articulate this, lol. Let me think and maybe come back with better wording.


by Milami on Jul. 10, 2012 at 10:44 AM

 An exit strategy? No. I'll die when I die.

 My mother is 58 and has liver cancer. She is on the transplant list. She's not ready to Exit. She wants to see her grandchildren grow up and hopefully she will be able to do that.

by Silver Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 10:48 AM

I don't have a strategy yet...I'm almost 24, I have a life to live and I don't really have a lot of time to think about that right now. I trust my husband enough that he would make the right decision if something were to happen to me. He watched his mom slip away and die from cancer, he's unfortunately skilled when it comes to loss.

by Silver Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 10:49 AM

I like the car analogy. When I am totalled, I want to go. I agree that we have tended to make irrational and even unethical decisions regarding medical intervention because we've been groomed to expect healthcare providers to 'do everything they can'. Further, the healthcare and insurance industry maximizes profits by urging patients and loved ones to consume as much healthcare as possible. Bucking this system takes a level of independence and assertiveness that few can muster particularly when a loved one is ill.

by Dixie on Jul. 10, 2012 at 10:50 AM

I told my husband son and mom that is the doctors say that I have no chance in coming out of a coma then just let me go. I don't want them to use all of their money to keep me alive. I used to be the opposite when I was younger I wanted them to keep me alive no matter what. I used to be really scared of dying. I still am but not as much as I used to be

by Ruby Member on Jul. 10, 2012 at 11:17 AM

 Excellent and refreshingly different post, thank you.

I never want to be a vegetable.  If I can't scratch and wipe my own gluteous maximous, I want to exit.  I have always thought that if I'm ever put into a rest home, I will save my medications until I have enough to put me in a coma with a DNR on file. 

My daughter once told me as a teenager that if she ever got cancer as two of her friends had done, to do everything that could be done to keep her alive.  I was surprised because I am of the opposite mind bent; don't do anything extraordinary that puts me in the position of being dependent on anyone to feed, bathe and clothe me.

I don't want to be propped up in front of a tv.  I hate commercials and if I can't channel surf during them, I will gulp down my stash of pills first chance I get to do so unnoticed! 

I can't understand surgery on an 81 year old.  In most instances, that's a death sentence but if the octogenarian survives the surgery, her last days could be fraught with infection and pain and the inability to insist on more pain killers.

I'm definitely for quality of life over longevity.

by on Jul. 10, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Last week, I had a cataract surgery on my right eye (will be doing the same for my left eye in a few weeks) and was asked at pre admitting at the hospital if I had Power of Attorney paperwork.

No, I don't. Yes, it's a minor procedure-cataract surgery-but still they must ask, and it blew my mind that as meticulaous as I am about details, I have not done THIS one important thing.

This will be changing.

As for DNR, both Dh and I will also have something signed for that.

My Mom turned 73 and her "Exit Strategy" has not been revealed and depending on when she is pissed off at one of us (two of my sister's and myself), she only hints at what she wants. *sigh Lovely. She claims to have everything in order on *what* she wants at the end, but again, she needs to be upfront with us girls about this and refuses.

Very, very frustrating and concerning for us. :(

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