Netherlands Begins Euthanizing Alcoholics

An alcoholic in the Netherlands has been euthanized by the state because he had "no prospect of improvement" and could not continue living as an alcoholic.

An alcoholic in the Netherlands has been euthanized by the state because he had “no prospect of improvement” and could not continue living as an alcoholic.

Mark Langedijk, who suffered from depression and anxiety, was allowed to choose the day of his death and was cracking jokes, drinking beer and eating ham sandwiches with his family hours before he passed away.

He was killed by lethal injection at his parents’ home on 14 July, according to an account of the ordeal written by his brother and published in the magazine Linda.

The Independent reports:

The Netherlands introduced a euthanasia law 16 years ago, which is available to people in “unbearable suffering” with no prospect of improvement.

Marcel Langedijk wrote his brother had a “happy childhood” and was loved by both his parents, and only found out he had an addiction eight years ago.

“I was particularly angry at Mark,” he said. “At first we did what most people do; help. My parents especially have done everything humanly possible to save Mark.”

His parents continued to believe in a “happy ending” despite eight years of help and 21 stints in rehab.

Eventually, Mr Langedijk told his family he wanted to die, but the family originally took the news with “a grain of salt”.

But his brother had no second thoughts. His application for euthanasia was approved by a doctor from the Support and Consultation on Euthanasia in the Netherlands.

On the day of his death, he “laughed, drank, smoked, ate ham and cheese sandwiches and soup with meatballs” until his doctor arrived at his parents’ home at 3.15pm.

His doctor explained the procedure, before telling Mr Landedijk to get into bed and to stay calm.

At this point, they all “started crying, my parents, everyone actually, even Mark”.

“We cried, told each other that we loved each other, that it would be all right, that we would care for each other, that we would see each other again, we held each other,” he said. “If it was not so terrible, it would have been nice.

“Mark’s eyes turned away, he sighed deeply. His last. Dr Marijke injected the third syringe. His face changed, lost color. My little brother was dead.”

More than 5,500 people ended their life using Holland’s euthanasia laws last year. One of those who died was a sex abuse victim who suffered severe anorexia, chronic depression and hallucinations.

Fiona Bruce, a Conservative MP, told the Daily Mail news of Mr Landedijk’s death was “deeply concerning and yet another reason why assisted suicide and euthanasia must never be introduced into the UK”.

“What someone suffering from alcoholism needs is support and treatment to get better from their addiction – which can be provided – not to be euthanised,” she added.

“It is once again a troubling sign of how legalised euthanasia undermines in other countries the treatment and help the most vulnerable should receive.”

Responding to Mrs Bruce, Marcel Langedijk told the Independent: “You can close your eyes to it and keep telling yourself everyone is curable but the fact remains, not everyone is.

“My brother suffered from depression and anxiety and tried to ‘cure’ it with alcohol. He’s from a normal family, he did not want this to happen. He did not take an easy way out. Just a humane one.

“If that’s troubling for Mrs Bruce that’s a pity. I am just glad my brother did not have to jump in front of a train or live a few more years in agony before dying of his abuse.

“Alcoholism and depression are illnesses, just like cancer. People who suffer from it need a humane way out.

“It’s not like we go around killing people in Holland. It took my brother a year and a half and many struggles to get it done.”

Baxter Dmitry

Baxter Dmitry

Baxter Dmitry is a writer at Your News Wire. He covers politics, business and entertainment. Speaking truth to power since he learned to talk, Baxter has travelled in over 80 countries and won arguments in every single one. Live without fear.
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Baxter Dmitry
  • SpidermanVitamin

    Yeah Im sure with 21 stints in rehab, that “treatment was all the man needed” fuck you and your treatment. Your version of treatment is electroshock therapy, that leaves the human with no memory, and in a vegetable state, rotting away on a hospital bed racking up medical bill and a burden on their family, both emotionally and financially.

    • Yellow Snow

      Absolute rubbish.

  • NewHampshire Bound


  • Yellow Snow

    This is a very poorly written article with a disgraceful headline inferring the unfortunate alcoholic was somehow put down like a suffering animal. People suffering from alcoholism (or any other addiction) often go through times when they feel they’d be better off dead but many do go on to recover. But many recovering alcoholics now leading fulfilling lives and contributing to society would not be here had euthanasia been an option during their darkest hours, a time when they are far from able mentally to make such a decision. Suicide by any means is never an answer and euthanasia provided by a for-profit company is simply disgusting.

  • Steve Mac Brasil

    I think greater understanding of the CONSEQUENCES of legalised-assisted SUICIDE should be provided…. then those participating in such activities of EUTHANASIA, will realise their error, and duties towards preserving life.
    Extract from the book I translated from Portuguese to English, on the subject… Chapter 14 – page 75.
    FREE, full pre-publish, dual-language book download here:
    ” 6 – What do you say of some countries, where there is, today, legislation that permits euthanasia? In the measure that communities develop, human legislation tends to approximate that of Divine Legislation, which is consolidated in the lessons of Jesus, and that emphasize respect towards Life. If a society removes itself from this Gospel, it enters this process in the opposite way, with fateful consequences. The legislator, who institutes euthanasia, together with the doctors who execute the act, and the families who approve it, – including the patients who submit themselves to it, will all answer for it. “

  • Lorrie Timbs

    It’s a demonic spirit and can be removed. I suffered from drug addiction and went to rehab but nothing worked but Jesus Christ. He takes the evil spirits away and the desire goes with them. You become a new creature in Christ, the old you goes away. Praise God!