28-year-old woman decides to be euthanized due to mental health issues

A physically healthy 28-year-old Dutch woman decided to legally end her life due to her struggles with debilitating depression, autism and borderline personality disorder, according to a report.

Zoraya ter Beek, who lives in a small village in the Netherlands near the German border, is due to be euthanized in May – despite being in love with her 40-year-old boyfriend and living with two cats.

Ter Beek, who once aspired to become a psychiatrist, faced mental health issues throughout her life. She said she decided to be euthanized after her doctors told her, “There’s nothing more we can do for you.” It will never get better,” according to The Free Press.

“I’ve always been very clear that if the situation doesn’t improve, I can’t do this anymore,” ter Beek said.

Zoraya ter Beek, 28, will die by assisted suicide in May. RTL News

She is one of a growing number of people in the West who have decided to die rather than continue to live in suffering that, unlike a terminal illness, could be treated.

More and more people are deciding to end their lives while suffering from a host of other mental health issues like depression or anxiety amplified by economic uncertainty, climate change, social media and other issues, The Free Press reported.

Ter Beek said she would receive the deadly drug on her couch with her boyfriend by her side. RTL News

“I see euthanasia as a kind of acceptable option offered by doctors and psychiatrists, whereas before it was the last resort,” Stef Groenewoud, health care ethicist at the Theological University, told the media from Kampen, the Netherlands. .

“I see this phenomenon especially among people with psychiatric illnesses, and especially among young people suffering from psychiatric disorders, where the health professional seems to give up more easily than before,” she added.

Ter Beek plans to be cremated after being euthanized on her living room couch. “No music,” she said.

A doctor will first give him a sedative, followed by medication that will stop his heart. Her boyfriend will be by her side until the end.

“The doctor really takes his time. It’s not that they come in and say, please lie down! Most of the time, it’s a cup of coffee first to calm the nerves and create a gentle atmosphere,” she said.

“Then she asks me if I’m ready. I’ll take my place on the couch. She will ask me again if I am sure, she will start the procedure and wish me a good trip. Or, in my case, a good nap, because I hate it when people say, “Have a good trip.” I’m not going anywhere.”

Euthanasia has been legal in the Netherlands since 2001. AFP via Getty Images

There will be no funeral. Ter Beek, who doesn’t have much family, said her boyfriend will scatter her ashes in “a beautiful place in the woods” that they choose.

“I’m a little afraid of dying, because it’s the ultimate unknown,” she says. “We don’t really know what’s next – or is there nothing?” That’s what’s scary.

The Netherlands became the first country in the world to legalize assisted suicide in 2001. Since then, this option has become increasingly popular among the population.

In 2022, there were 8,720 deaths by euthanasia in the Netherlands, representing around 5% of all deaths in the country and an increase from 14% the previous year, according to Dutch media. In February, former Dutch Prime Minister Dries van Agt, 93, and his wife died hand in hand by euthanasia.

Critics of legalizing suicide say people like Ter Beek have been encouraged to kill themselves by the law, and many compare the suicide wave to a contagion, according to The Free Press.

Ter Beek criticized the Free Press article on Twitter on Tuesday and announced that she would leave social media before her death.

“It was my honor to provide information to people willing to learn something,” she posted.

New York Post

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