By Life Culture Manitoba [www.lifeculture.ca]
Last week, a supportive group received a heart rendering email from a 38 year-old woman in Winnipeg considering MAiD. She gave permission to share part of her email with you.
“I am seriously considering the right to MAID. I am writing as a last resort before doing so. I live with a vision impairment and mental health concerns. Even before the pandemic, I had no or little access to the system.
I tried to go through employment programs, who refused to put in the extra effort to get someone with my disabilities hired. For years, I was bounced back between physical disability employment agencies and mental health programs and on mental health meds that had hard side effects. The worst was nausea and exhaustion which made it extremely difficult to work.
Often I found myself on EI [Employment Insurance] or EIA, only to be told I’m lazy and try harder with no or little or irrelevant help. The advice I was given from many therapists was to not ask friends and family for help but go to the system for resources. If I was in dire straits, maybe get my act together. I found very little compassion.
The only way was to leave the system altogether and find my way on my own. I did find work and connections. However, times are getting tough and people are offended by me asking them for help, considering me as a “burden.”
As for friends, I understand people have work and families. It crushes me that there are many others, alone, contemplating suicide, with no supports, abandoned by family and friends and brushed off, told to “Be independent,” “Figure it out,” etc.
How can seniors and people with disabilities and vulnerable people connect? How can all the lonely people get together and support each other? Why is helping others so offensive?”
I am so ashamed of this situation. I don’t want to want attention, I just need prayers and really really desire safe, affordable, accessible housing. I want to have healthy relationships where there is mutuality.”
This woman was reaching out for help and personal support. She doesn’t want to die by euthanasia but she feels like a burden. Her plea for help is not uncommon. It is our goal to help people, like this woman, to live.