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Monday 20 October  
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Amsterdam, Netherlands
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Suicide tips for just 17.50 euros

Published on : 12 November 2009 - 5:28pm | By Robert Chesal
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No prospects for the future, tired of life or suicidal? Anyone who wants to take matters of life and death into their own hands can get plenty of information on how to end it all from the Dutch Right to Die Association (NVVE). The association has made suicide tips available on a new website.
 
Spokesperson for the association Walburg de Jong says the website is meant to give people information so that they can end their lives in a “humane way without resorting to horrific methods like throwing themselves off a roof or in front of a train.”
 
But doesn’t that encourage people to commit suicide? Not according to Ms De Jong: “Firstly it is only for members, so people can only enter the site with a log-in code.” You only have access to the site if you are a member, which costs 17.50 euros per year.
 
Step-by-step guide

On the site, the association gives detailed information on medicines which can be used for suicide. It also lists the countries where they are available and the brand names they are known by. The methods are also explained step-by-step. This is from the introduction:
 
There are two main methods for committing suicide using medicines.
 
In the first method, fast-working and long-lasting sleeping pills are used in combination with a plastic bag over the head, so that you die of suffocation.

 
In the second method, you take lethal medicine in combination with sleeping tablets and antiemetics, to prevent vomiting. Death is caused by cardiac arrest or apnoea. The information given here only concerns the second method and is based on reliable data, as far as we know.
 
Huge demand
There are around 1,500 suicides in the Netherlands every year, a large percentage are committed by people over the age of 60. Ms De Jong: “These are people who say ‘my life is over but I do not have a classifiable illness, so I am not eligible for euthanasia’. Or people who are sick, but whose doctor does not want to use euthanasia."

In the Netherlands both active euthanasia, when a doctor gives a lethal dose of medicine to end the life of a patient, and assisting suicide fall under criminal law. However, doctors who adhere to strict rules are not prosecuted. The doctor has to be convinced that the patient’s request to end his or her life is voluntary and well-considered. The patient has to be suffering intolerable pain with no prospect for improvement. But where many doctors think this refers to physical pain, the Dutch Right to Die Association regards mental suffering as an acceptable reason for euthanasia or suicide.
 
Help with suicide
Truus Hoyinck, member of the NVVE since 1991, says it is fine for the association to actively help people commit suicide. "I believe in self-determination. Years ago I ordered the Scottish book with suicide tips. I thought it was awful because it said you had to put a plastic bag over your head and wait until you suffocated. So if there is a better way, I’m all for it."
 
Aftercare

Suicide can also go wrong. Under the heading ‘Aftercare’ the suicide website says that should the attempt fail, the association’s support service  “is always prepared to talk about the experience.”
 
Membership of the Dutch Right to Die Association is open to Dutch people and foreigners. A limited amount of information is available in English on the site, but the association says – in response to numerous requests from abroad – that it does not prescribe medicines and does not have doctors who offer euthanasia or other help.

Visit the NVVE website

Photo: Suicide - Flickr: Digiart2001/Jason.Kuffer.
 
 

 

Discussion

ote 15 November 2011 - 4:33pm / Rational Island

why people who so passionately give tips how to day, haven't done it to themselves? how long have they worked ''in suicide" and haven't commit it? and why they are so involved in it? money? are they really so compassion? I'm sorry, pay 17,50 euro for few tips from INTERNET ( that cost almost nothing...)and pay by your destruction their salaries...haha

Anonymous 28 May 2011 - 8:30pm / USA

I think suide is a choice. Its your body to do with what you what with you want with it. I too am suffereing in my own way, I wanted a helium kit to die with, But they raided the place you could buy them at, Now I am scurrying the internet to find a supplier

Anonymous 28 May 2011 - 8:30pm / USA

I think suide is a choice. Its your body to do with what you what with you want with it. I too am suffereing in my own way, I wanted a helium kit to die with, But they raided the place you could buy them at, Now I am scurrying the internet to find a supplier

CMS 27 April 2011 - 7:34pm / USA

I think the book is a great idea, Its obvious if no one else will help you, Then you have to find some way of your own. Books, Euthanasia, Whatever, I just want to be gone!

user avatar
Captain Zen 21 January 2010 - 2:03am / a lot of know better here

I want to die. I am not sick, quiet the contrary, I am in good shape for my age. But I am so curious that I can hardly wait. My dogs and some friends have prevented me until now, but perhaps I will become so egoistic that I will go anyway. There is no need for medication or plastic bags for me. I have a small charcoal burner (Hitachi) in my bedroom, BBQ starter and charcoal ready. Close the windows and door, put on the fire and go to sleep. CO2 will do the rest. The problem is that I have done everything I could ever wish for. In the material world I have had all the toys a man could ever have. Small airplane, sailing yacht, antiques and art works, cars and women, travels to exotic places and now I am a hobby gold smith handling precious stones and metals. Now I want to know what death is. I studied all religions, sects, magic and spirituality, philosophy and music. What more is there than every day to live on doing nothing useful or satisfying? I look in the eyes of a new born baby and I see the immense depth of life. Then I wonder and sorrow for what this baby will contribute to the betterment of the world. More pollution, green house gas, forest destruction, consuming a life long things that will lead it finally to die. I think the best way to help the planet is to leave it. That day I will stop smoking and using gas and plastics and paper and all the other materials that pollute the planet. I wish the Druon pill was available, lsaid to be less cumbersome than my little BBQ. Before I am gone, you may see my comments here for a while. I like to confuse you all a bit.

Gerard Johnson 10 November 2012 - 7:00am / Australia

I agree with you Captain Zen. I feel similar. I have accomplished plenty in my life. Maybe I would be greedy to want or expect more. Perhaps I have been spoiled with the experiences I have had, and now little seems of great interest. I am also fascinated to now about after life. And I believe I will be free of the mental pain and torment of burden that now overcomes me. I too have friend and family whom I know I will cause sadness to. But their sadness to my death is only relative to my continuing sadness to my living. I also see the detrimental element people mindless contribute to the world. And I also the beauty, potential and wonder of individual magic in every person. Still it doesn't change my heart and mind. I truly hope you succeed in your endeavour and are happy.

Anonymous 20 December 2010 - 6:17pm / uk

Are you still here Alexander ? you have had a blessed life with so much material wealth at your fingertips- you know what life is but the imponderable question remains - what is death ? oblivion - perhaps the kindest outcome but the murderer and the saint become equal in extinction without judgement. Our sense of fair play calls out for some sort of moral reckoning !!
If not oblivion then what - religion , philosohy, magic, spiritualism all have answers based on the indestructability of the soul- but perhaps this is no comfort for the suicidal mind who seeks no comfort in the idea of eternal becoming. Anyway they say Curiosity Killed the Cat - So Alexander has Curiosity taken you yet? The simple question is To Be or Not To Be, or to paraphrase - To BBQ or not to BBQ, This Alexander is my one abiding question too-

Rana Gia 5 May 2010 - 1:45am

hey man if u think theres nothing useful or satisfying in life then have kids,get married to sum1 u care about deeply or sumthin..and why such curiosity for death?..patience my freind itll come sooner or later..think of it sumthin to look forward too..i hope ur not dead yet..never thought id be writting to a dead person hehe

wetcoaster 18 December 2009 - 9:55am / canada

Dieing can be a complicated business and we should be informed and mature about it. We should talk. I certainly don't just want to be the pawn, I want to be involved and in control. This article is not very deep but it does bring up compassion for not only the alert but for our other companions as well. I myself find I've too many obligations to go soon but one should always plan and inform ones loved ones.

Rana 9 December 2009 - 4:50pm / Holland/Neijmegen
This is acceptable in the Netherlands? well im not surprised.Dutch people accept a lot of things,drugs,prostetution..seriously,is that not enough??now suicide tips??whats next?murder?because this isnt so far from murder its self!Im a 17 year old girl and Bi polar,suffering from depression, i dont think(no matter how depressed i am) that i would like people to be so insensitive towards my unstable state of mind and lost of hope, id like help and understanding not people or organisations like this to help me do something that i want when im clearly not stable and need help(medication,therapy).These are all chemical imbalances in the brain, you cannot take a person seriously when they are not them selves or their sick..end their suffering by helping them get better, not end their life! I mean yea if you put that way death solves everything i guess, but we cant take the easy way out because it is the wrong wroong one and the cowerdest one aswell.Where are the morrals in that method Robert?Medicine has improved so much that people can get help(mental hospitals,pshyciatrists,pshycologists etc) and you shouldnt go against them...Any way I think this web site is pointless, theres more on the internet and i dont see why you want to join and increase the number of "such" sites.. Hope is the most important medicin in this case just like Jasmine stated above, all is possible with that. I dont think you would like it if some poor depressed children or adults commited suicide right after getting some tips from you.For example the method you mensioned above about : Step-by-step guide On the site, the association gives detailed information on medicines which can be used for suicide. It also lists the countries where they are available and the brand names they are known by. The methods are also explained step-by-step. This is from the introduction: There are two main methods for committing suicide using medicines. In the first method, fast-working and long-lasting sleeping pills are used in combination with a plastic bag over the head, so that you die of suffocation. In the second method, you take lethal medicine in combination with sleeping tablets and antiemetics, to prevent vomiting. Death is caused by cardiac arrest or apnoea. The information given here only concerns the second method and is based on reliable data, as far as we know. That is pretty detailed.How would you live with yourself when all that person needed was some help and not this type of help..You still think you would be helping people by helping providing such information to this poor unstable sick people?? i think not.. kind regards Rana Gia Hafez
jasmin 17 November 2009 - 12:26pm
Robert Chesal, I am sorry for the misunderstanding, but the general tone of your reply implied that. However, I agree what Mukesh T has to say, that we can't have two parameters for the same situation! I am a health professional and I have been dealing with depressed patients/people for the past 30 years, during my college course and later in my job. And, due to the kind blessings of the Almighty, I have been able to help people in a positive way. Perhaps, Robert, the difference in opinion is due to our respective jobs: for you the person/people are objects to be reported upon as a news, and nothing more; for us they are persons in dilemma, who need our help to see the right perspective through communication and medication. However, please remember, the driving force of life lies not in food and air, but HOPE- Hope sustains life. These people lose hope for better times...All they need is compassion and motivation, irrespective of the fact that whether they are our loved ones or strangers. Thanks for responding, and we can always agree to disagree on this moral dilemma.
Arev Beilttog 16 November 2009 - 9:26pm
How totally tasteless!
Mukesh Tekwani 17 November 2009 - 11:16am
Please accept at least this point Jasmin has made : the title is provocative. This is the problem with media. They have to put up something which will attract the attention - more so on Internet where attention spans as very short. The title seems to give the impression that one can have the tips for a price. Sensationalisation of news and trivialising news has become the order of the day. So far it was on TV but it seems to be spreading to print and online journalism as well - and thats very sad indeed. I am not too sure whether a person hell-bent on committing suicide will bother too much about options - is option A better than option B, etc, but I feel the article somehow creates a wrong atmosphere. You also mention - twice in fact - that it is not your moral obligation to prevent a suicide, and that a person has the right to self-determination. I am afraid not many people will agree there. (1) It is everybody's moral obligation to preserve life, make a person's life happier, and prevent suicide. That is not debatable, not negotiable. (2) Right to self-determination doesnot mean right to commit suicide. Suicide is a one way street. If the decision to commit suicide was taken under a wrong assumption, in haste, due to pressures (external/internal), due to social, financial problems, then the right to self-determination does not exisit because the person is not in a position - due to various reasons - to take an informed decision. And if my attitude about this topic is different when it comes to dealing with people I love, then there is a problem with the idea. This idea of the so-called "self-determination" is not applicable then? By the way - Isaac Asimov had come out with law of robotics. I hope someone will read those laws, and I hope robots aren't reading this article of yours!
jasmin 16 November 2009 - 12:33pm
''Suicide tips for just 17.50 euros'', the title itself is self-explanatory, that you are advertising the tips or are attracting visitors to read the article or visit the site for tips! Robert Chesal, you say,''I would certainly feel inclined to try to help a suicidal person...'' I am shocked! Would you also help a person close to you, as well? I know how it feels when close family members go into depression and feel suicidal. I lost my two, first cousin sisters. I always feel bad, that I wasn't with them to help them and stop them from taking the fatal steps! My own sons went into depression for certain reasons beyond their control and talked of futility of life! I still shudder, when I think of those black days! I really worked hard to take them out of depression, through talking, medication and spirituality...Robert, I really pray that you don't have to face such situations, it is terrible...I hope you will rethink on your 'inclination..' Thanks RNW, for providing the reaction pages to register of our comments.
user avatar
Robert Chesal 16 November 2009 - 9:47pm
 Jasmin, I am afraid you misunderstood me. When I wrote that I would feel inclined to help a suicidal person, I did not mean I would feel inclined to help them commit suicide. I meant quite the opposite: I would be inclined to listen to them, to try and help them gain perspective and to realize life is worth living. On the other hand, I do not feel it is morally correct to overstep the boundaries of that person's own right to self-determination. If that person were truly committed to ending his or her life, then I would eventually have to accept that. I realize of course that if it were someone I loved, this would be practically impossible to really accept. But all the same - do I have the right to force someone else to continue suffering? I don't think so.
user avatar
Robert Chesal 16 November 2009 - 11:41am
When we published this article last week, I decided to give visitors a few days to respond before joining the fray. I fully expected there to be a mix of positive and negative responses. To my surprise, the article has been roundly criticized. While I respect the opinions of everyone who writes in, I believe some of the criticisms are unfair.   Radio Netherlands is not 'promoting' suicide and the Dutch Right to Die Association. To my mind we are not promoting anything. We are reporting on a news story involving an issue - the wish felt by many people to have some self-determination regarding the timing and manner of their own death. We quote two members of an organization, the NVVE, which is taken very seriously here in the Netherlands and in many other countries. The NVVE has over 105,000 members, many of whom agree that euthanasia and assisted suicide are acceptable methods for achieving self-determination regarding death.   This article does not provide any 'ready-made' tips or any 'methodical description' for ending your own life. Mind you, anyone seeking such tips could easily find them on the internet. But nowhere in this article are tips given which are specific enough to facilitate a suicide attempt.   I do not believe freedom of speech is more important than human life. But I also do not believe that I have a duty to prevent people from taking their own lives at all costs and against their own will. I would certainly feel inclined to try to help a suicidal person, but ultimately it is neither practically possible nor morally defensible to prevent all suffering people from taking matters into their own hands.   Radio Netherlands (and I personally) do care what you think. Otherwise we would not make it possible for you to respond on our site. Thanks to this facility, I know that you consider the article to be in poor taste, gimmicky, sensationalist, harmful, silly and depressing. Here, at least, are some points which I can take to heart. To those who feel insulted, my apologies. To those who wish to debate the moral issues, I await your reponse.  
Mukesh Tekwani 16 November 2009 - 5:18am
For a person here in india, its very disturbing to read the junk that RN has put up. I know that within mass media, there's stiff competition. We have seen that here in India where the TV channels dish out junk every hour. But RN resorting to these gimmicks? I repeat what I wrote earlier on 14th Nov - this is an irresponsible act by RN. I lodge my protest. Maybe my protest has no meaning in numbers - but RN, I have been listening to your programs since 1979. Loved it all these decades. But never heard this type of stuff. Now all I can say is this - I will NOT recommend anyone to listen to RN. I am not sure whether your programs will inspire or depress. Mumbai, India
anonymous 16 November 2009 - 4:04am
And the worst part is that RNW does not care what you people think about this article. There is no word from Robert Chesal or their boss to explain or expunge the article.Perhaps, they don't read what you people write or they just don't care what you feel or they are really advertizing the article!
Abdul Okaka 15 November 2009 - 9:01pm
This is a highly irresponsible article. What a shame that Radio Netherlands would put up something as silly as this--moerso, it appears that you are advertizing for the Dutch Right to Die Association.
jasmin 14 November 2009 - 8:30pm
Exactly, Mueksh T! But as you know, for RNW, freedom of speech/ freedom of Robert Chesal to put forth this article/ freedom to die, is more important than the lives of the depressed people, who might unfortunately read this article and try to follow it! Why should RNW care? They are more concerned about making the article to the ,'Most Popular Now' category than listen to you and me, the fools, who want people to live and who want this article to be removed! They rather removed by first comment yesterday and rejected the second comment saying,'discussion on this topic closed'...but then published both the comments. The RNW is now more into sensational news rather than into a sweet, comfort giving site, it once used to be!
Mueksh T 14 November 2009 - 7:55pm
I think this article is in very poor taste. Your website must be viewed by tens of thousands of people everyday, among them teenagers, people who are, maybe even temporarily, in a depressed state. By providing such "ready-made" tips you are infact causing great harm to society and encouraging suicide. Certain things are best left unsaid and undiscussed. Let friends and relatives help such people. Let RN setup a helpline for such depressed people. Just because there is a medium does not meant that such outrageous ideas should be put up. Imagine a situation where a lonely person comes across this site - do you realise he / she may get into great trouble. I have been listening to Radio Netherlands since 1979 and this is the worst thing I have ever heard of from RNW. My humble request - please get rid of this article and the website address as soon as possibe. It is very easy to take life - as you have described in a very methodical way. i wonder if you also have a recipe on how to create life in an equally simple way! I doubt very much
jasmin 13 November 2009 - 11:59am
This article has disturbed my mental calm. How can the Dutch do this to perfectly normal people? I have heard of suicide councilling to save lives but not on how to assist in doing so! There is so much misery in the world and so many unhappy and poor people who need these perfectly normal affluent people who have nothing else to do but die! Try to bring sunshine in the life of others, make others smile, help the disadvantaged and the poor and make them happy. The world needs these people who feel themselves not worthy of living. By enriching the lives of others, they will enrich their own lives. And I bet, they won't regret and find a moment to die! And when the Death, does knock on their door, they will go contented that they lived their lives to the full, but will also leave with a pang in their hearts that there are more tears to wipe yet!
jasmin 12 November 2009 - 5:38pm
Is RNW promoting suicide by promoting the website? I am surprised at the selection of the topic by the RNW team head! You are committing a crime by giving ideas to depressed people or the people with suicidal tendencies. How justified is your attempt to highlight this story and what is the purpose of putting the story on an esteemed site as yours?

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