My dad's wife is a couple years younger than me, they've been married over 30 years, my Mama died at 34 from aggressive cancer. Dad's wife and me are in our early 50s. Daddy is 81 and bedbound with psp, for months. Several months ago she and I discussed the possibility of a feeding tube if it was ever needed, and we agreed we couldn't watch him dehydrate/starve to death. Then today their family doctor made a house call. The man is retiring next year and if you ask me he's seen a few too many patients get old and die and he's callous. He asked Daddy, "So C, do you still enjoy living?" Daddy said yes. A few minutes later doc said, "I can hardly believe you said you still enjoy living. Must not take much to make you happy." Oooook. THEN doc asked him, "If it comes to it and you need a feeding tube to eat do you want that or do you want to just go on to Heaven?" HMMMM. Very bias way to word it in my opinion. Since this whole psp nightmare has started, Daddy has had at least one mini-stroke and the psp has affected his brain in more ways than bodily BUT he's still there and able to communicate with words, albeit not many words but enough that I know he's still "there," just not as much. So after the doc left, I said to his wife, "but we (her and I) talked about this and said we couldn't let him starve to death". I don't even remember what she said, I was/am in a state of horror and shock. Oh wait, that's when she mumbled something about, back when Daddy was talking more, he told her he wouldn't want resuscitation which I can agree with at this point, but she said he also said he wouldn't want the tube. Whoa. So! Why didn't she say this when she and I discussed it in vivid detail several months ago? It doesn't make sense! And, kind folks who are or who have walked the same hellish road of psp.. I truly don't want to offend anyone and I'm sure there are people here who've elected to forego the food tube. Your situation may be totally different and I don't look at YOUR decision in the same way I look at the decision about MY father. I mean, I don't judge anyone for these excruciating decisions. For MY Daddy though, no. I want the tube unless he's comatose or no brain activity!!!!! period! (or 5 exclamation marks haha couldn't resist)! I live in the home with them because I moved in to help take care of him 15 months ago, in the house where I grew up and haven't lived in for decades. I deserve to have some say in this but legally I doubt I have any right. I'm afraid she'll make me go talk to Daddy about it and, he's easily led, with the psp, ask a leading question and you'll get the answer you're looking for, very slowly. Anyway I don't like anyone putting thoughts of death in his mind not one minute sooner than necessary. Am I wrong????? Am I totally overstepping my bounds with all of this? I'm the only adult kid out of 3 who has not ever been out of contact with my father all my life. He loves me some kinda fierce. Oh my God I'm going to miss his love but let's not let me digress. (break to cry oh no) Here is a quote from Lord only knows where, somewhere online, and it describes exactly how I feel about this issue. I'd love to hear from any of you but don't even read it if you're sensitive about this subject and I'm sure some people rightfully, are. The quote: Removing their food or water isn't LETTING them die, it's MAKING them die. Nor is this type of death "putting them out of their misery," as some would say. Instead, it's putting them INTO misery, the misery of dying in an excruciating manner. How could dying of thirst or starvation be considered a peaceful death? THE END of quote. I'm freaking out because Daddy's swallowing has gotten more difficult and of course he eats very slowly. He's eating considerably less but hasn't lost noticeable weight and doesn't need to. He sometimes has to be reminded to chew, OR to swallow. We've yet to have to use a suction machine but he's almost choked or choked a little, several times. I'm afraid that this serious choking could begin at any day, tomorrow, a wk from now, so I need to speak up to his wife right??? I want to send her the quote, in a text or note so she can think about it before I see her tomorrow. OR.. what? I don't want to disrupt whatever peace my Dad has in these last days weeks months of his life so it's hard to discuss it vocally because he could overhear. Oh and doc said his heart sounds great and BP was 120/70. I don't want it to be ever but... when? when will it be. And tube or no tube, his wish or too leading of a question for his condition, shall I stand up to his wife who may be ready to get on with her life or not i hate to think that but, there it is. So many hard questions. Thanks for reading.
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