Belgian doctors are considering allowing a healthy 24-year-old woman to die by euthanasia because she has been suffering from suicidal thoughts.
The woman, identified by her pseudonym Laura, has been told that she qualifies for euthanasia, even though she does not have any chronic or terminal diseases.
While speaking to Belgian newspaper De Morgen, Laura said that she has wanted to die since she was a child. She claimed that she had a troubled childhood, in which her father drank excessively and her parents said that they didn’t plan on having her. She eventually moved in with her grandparents who gave her “security, peace, and structure,” but she said it still wasn’t enough.
According to Laura, suicidal thoughts were among the earliest thoughts she remembers having.
“Life, that’s not for me,” she told the newspaper.
She has been a patient in a psychiatric institution since she was 21 years old. In the institution, she befriended another suicidal girl who chose to be killed by euthanasia 18 months ago.
Laura said that she has enjoyed the process of planning her own funeral. She added, however, that she knows her death will be difficult for her mother and grandmother to handle.
“Death feels to me not as a choice. If I had a choice, I would choose a bearable life, but I have done everything and that was unsuccessful,” Laura said.
“I played all my life with these thoughts of suicide, I have also done a few attempts," she added. "But then there is someone who needs me, and I don’t want to hurt anyone. That has always stopped me.”
Over the last 12 months, the number of Belgians choosing to end their own lives by euthanasia has surged by 27 percent.
Assisted dying was legalized in Belgium in 2003 and an average of five people per day die there with medical assistance, Metro reports.