7 Replies Latest reply on Dec 14, 2015 9:51 AM by JerryD

    End-of-life five wishes

    BoBraxton

      We each filled ours out before start of May 2012. Now spouse is scheduled tomorrow (Wednesday) for total joint (hip) replacement surgery. Hospital said to bring with us spouse's Advance Directive (including Five Wishes). How many others have done such (legal work) for self / couple? how long ago?

        • Re: End-of-life five wishes
          Susanna144

          I had to do a Google search to figure out that Five Wishes is a kind of advance healthcare directive or living will.  This is a tough one for me, primarily because there isn't anybody I want to choose to make these decisions for myself, and most of the questions asked in these forms cannot be answered, except to say that it depends on the circumstance of the illness, and without knowing the illness in advance, it's impossible to know what care is appropriate.  I realize why its helpful to provide an advance directive, to caregivers, I just cannot fill out such a form for myself.  I hope the operation went well!

          • Re: End-of-life five wishes
            BoBraxton

            Age not quite 72, spouse first total joint replacement (hip) surgery - report "everything went well" (Recovery) then first physical therapy, overnight, 6:30am second (physical therapy). Virginia.

            • Re: End-of-life five wishes
              TroutBum

              Two months ago my wife and I visited our attorney. We had provided him with our old information; Will, POA, Living Will, etc along with our current information. He did the rest and now we're good to go (not literally right away I hope).

              • Re: End-of-life five wishes
                JerryD

                After seeing how a lowly nurse chose to interpret my Mom's living will, I vowed adamantly to NEVER, EVER create such a loose document that some uninterested person could choose to apply. We both feel that the actual circumstances and ultimate decisions can not be dictated by some minimal statements on a piece of paper filled out years, if not decades, before.

                 

                When we created our trust, we included a health power of attorney for each of us with the other as the sole arbiter of the other's wishes should that person be incapable of deciding. Although this is a terrible responsibility to place on a stressed and possibly grieving spouse, we both thought that they could make much better decisions and would be capable with the help of family to find out the true circumstances and outlook.

                 

                PS: Bo, best wishes to your wife for a quick recovery.

                  • Re: End-of-life five wishes
                    Susanna144

                    Thanks Jerry! You made me feel better about my refusal.  The medical establishment really pushes these things, but they must have to deal with people like me all the time.  I agree about the burden placed on one's spouse too.  In effect, a married person without any advance healthcare directive will have their care influenced by their spouse.  I am just refusing to put that into writing, because I know what a poor plan that is.  Fortunately medical conditions in which a living will is really needed are quite rare.

                    • Re: End-of-life five wishes
                      herbyreed

                      Good sentiments except for the "lowly nurse" comment.  Please reconsider.  Nurses are highly trained professionals.  I am married to one and one of my daughters is one and I can tell you that although their role is different from that of a doctor, there is nothing lowly about it. And from my recent experience with both my mom and my father in law, I have to say that it was the nurses who knew what was going on and what the best course of action was in caring for a dying person.

                        • Re: End-of-life five wishes
                          JerryD

                          I didn't mean to include all nurses in my "lowly nurse" comment above. I am still a bit angry after over 15 years over the way this specific nurse chose to interpret my Mom's wishes, especially given her actions that did not convince me that her death was imminent.

                           

                          I can give another example of a nurse that advised my sister and me when my Mom's sister was in a comma and on ventilation. I had driven in at high-speed from another state to be with her. Just as I got there some resident-type doctor was pushing to remove ventilation. A lovely nurse took us aside after he left and advised that she would make up her own mind soon without my sister and I having to make that fateful decision. The advice gave us a chance to be with her and speak to her, hoping that she could hear, and tell her how much we both appreciated how she took care of us all of our lives and that it was all right for her to go to be with much loved friends and family. She calmly took a few more breaths and passed on. What a relief that nurse provided us both with her kind words of advice and the time that she allowed for us to be with her.