Home » Physically fit 29-year-old Dutch woman granted permission for euthanasia; what’s the case?

Physically fit 29-year-old Dutch woman granted permission for euthanasia; what’s the case?

The Netherlands, known for its progressive stance on end-of-life decisions, enacted a law in 2002 allowing euthanasia for those in “unbearable suffering with no prospect of improvement.”

Zoraya ter Beek (Picture credit: X)

Amsterdam: Zoraya ter Beek, a 29-year-old Dutch woman, has been granted approval for euthanasia by the Netherlands government. Zoraya, who has been battling chronic depression, anxiety, trauma, and unspecified personality disorders for several years, has opted for assisted death as a means of finding solace in the face of her ongoing suffering.

Zoraya’s case has stirred a debate, both domestically and internationally, as euthanasia for people with mental health conditions remains uncommon. The Netherlands, known for its progressive stance on end-of-life decisions, enacted a law in 2002 allowing euthanasia for those in “unbearable suffering with no prospect of improvement.”

Zoraya acknowledged the controversy surrounding her decision. She said, “People think that when you’re mentally ill, you can’t think straight, which is insulting.” Despite the scrutiny, she emphasised the stringent regulations in the Netherlands regarding assisted dying, asserting that the process is safe and governed by strict protocols.

Zoraya’s journey towards euthanasia was not an impulsive decision. Having explored various treatment options, including therapy, medication, and electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), she found herself facing a profound sense of hopelessness as her condition persisted. Reflecting on her struggles, she revealed, “I knew I couldn’t cope with the way I live now.”

The process of seeking assisted dying in the Netherlands is arduous, requiring careful consideration and multiple evaluations. Zoraya’s decision was met with questioning at each stage, both by medical professionals and by those closest to her. Despite the challenges and doubts expressed by others, she remained resolute in her choice.

As the date for her euthanasia approaches, Zoraya has expressed a mix of emotions, including guilt and fear. She acknowledges the impact her decision will have on her loved ones but remains steadfast in her determination to proceed. With the support of her partner and medical professionals, she prepares to face her final moments with a sense of peace.

On the scheduled day, a medical team will visit Zoraya’s home to administer the procedure. The process will involve sedation followed by the cessation of her heart function, ensuring a painless transition. Zoraya’s partner will be by her side, providing comfort during her final moments.