Terminally ill Marie Fleming, who lost a legal battle to be given assisted suicide earlier this month, has criticized Taoiseach Enda Kenny and the judiciary for leaving her in a terrible limbo.
Her partner Tom Curran told The Late, Late Show on Friday that she felt the seven-judge Supreme Court had not listened to what she had to say when they ruled last week against her challenge to the ban on assisted suicide.
Fleming, 59, who is in the final stages of multiple sclerosis, is so ill she is unable to take her own life and she is afraid her partner will be prosecuted if he assists her wish. He read a statement from her on the broadcast in which she said that while she felt let down by the judgment, it was more upsetting that she wasn’t listened to.
“It seems that the state does not want me to die but all the time chips away at my quality of life, one cutback after another -- the latest being the mobility scheme and the carbon tax increasing heating and transport costs. Shame on Enda Kenny for what he is doing to people like me,” the statement said.
“If the people who make the decisions won’t listen to me, I would ask them to come and live my life for just one day or even one hour and tell me how enthusiastic they are about living. It seems they will not give me permission to die, but they will not help me live either.”
Although suicide was decriminalized in 1993, legislation still on the statute book makes it a criminal offense to assist or abet in another person’s suicide.
Despite the loss in former lecturer Fleming’s legal battle, her partner has said he will assist her to die if that is her wish.
“Right now, her goal is to be around for her son Simon’s wedding in August,” Curran said.
“Marie wants to live. Unfortunately, living to Marie means constant pain, constant discomfort, constant indignity. But it’s only her that can decide how much of that she is prepared to tolerate or not tolerate.”