"Imagine a psychiatrist telling a depressed patient to kill himself..."

by Dr. Mark Rollo, Board Member, MCFL


What makes a person want to commit suicide? I think of the great country song, I’m So Lonesome I
Could Cry. 

Some of us are even more extreme in our feelings of loss and abandonment. Some say to
themselves, “I’m so lonesome I could die.”

How are we to respond to such anguish? Do we respond by saying, “Well it’s your life, do what you
want. If you want to die, go ahead.” Or do we say, “I love you. I can’t let you do that!”

As a culture, we make extravagant efforts to prevent suicide. However, when it comes to physician
assisted suicide, we often hear, “Let me help you commit suicide.” Some go even further than that and
say, “I don’t want to help you kill yourself, I want to get someone in a healing profession to help you kill

Instantly, a healer's commitment to protecting and cherishing life is compromised and a suffering human being is abandoned.

But it gets even worse.

Imagine a psychiatrist helping a depressed patient kill himself.

Alan Nichols, a man from British Columbia, Canada, who struggled with depression and showed no signs of terminal
illness was given a medically-assisted death despite desperate pleas from his loved ones.  Mr. Nichols
was admitted to Chilliwack General Hospital in June, at age 61, after he was discovered dehydrated and
malnourished in his home.

One month later, he died by lethal injection at the hands of “healers.”

Our neighbors to the north now promote assisted suicide as do a handful of states in our own country.
Massachusetts has been in the crosshairs of this anti-life movement for years. Our legislators need to be
called and emphatically told that helping the depressed and dying does not include killing them. We
need to love them, provide them with the gold-standard of Massachusetts medical care, and by so doing deliver the message to those suffering from loneliness that our society will not abandon them.

How depraved have we become as a culture to allow assisted suicide -- especially psychiatric euthanasia?
When a depressed patient cries out, “I’m so lonesome I could die,” what do we actually mean when we say, “Won’t you let me help you . . .”

We should always help with healing. Assisted suicide is just another way to dehumanize the vulnerable members of our society.


To make your voice heard, and to tell the stories of those targeted by assisted suicide, you can contact the Joint Committee on Public Health.


Please email, call, and write stating your objections to physician assisted suicide (H.1926/ S.1208):

Committee Chair

Sen. Jo Comerford

(617) 722-1532

24 Beacon St.
Room 413-C
Boston, MA, 02133

[email protected]

Committee Vice Chair
Sen. Nick Collins 

(617) 722-1150

24 Beacon St.
Room 312-D
Boston, MA, 02133

[email protected]

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