Jan 20, 2020

Attending Your Loved One’s Final Moments

Reddit is a great platform for asking important questions, I use it regularly and often come across posts that are thought-provoking. I cross-posted one recent question from the platform to our community on Facebook,

“Should I be in the room when they take my loved one off of life support?”

It’s a difficult question with no easy answers. I was curious to hear about the experiences of our followers and ultimately received varied yet quite insightful responses. Below is a sampling of the comments,

The question isn’t should I, but can I. If you can, then be there, and if you cannot … don’t. No wrong or right answer here and no one gets to judge you one way or the other!

Someone said to me it is an honor to be there when someone enters the world, it is also an honor to be there as they exit the world. And suddenly I got it, and felt so much better.

The most important question is…What do they want? What’s important to them? If they wish to be there then WE as a team should support them. We have no right to decide if they can “handle it” or not. We should allow them to decide what’s best for both their family and themselves. 

Retired Hospice Chaplain here:
If you feel you can and have good support.
It can be a mystical, beautiful moment to be there at the time of passing, but if you aren’t sure, have someone (maybe a Hospice person) with you. I’ll hold you in prayer.

I recently experienced this with a dear friend who had suffered a massive heart attack and was taken off life support four days later. I knew that she was already gone, but I still did not want her to be alone. It wasn’t gruesome or disturbing; was difficult emotionally and profoundly sad. It helped me know that I was there for her until the very end.

It’s certainly a difficult question. What are your thoughts? You can comment under the original Facebook post if you’d like to leave a response.


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