Dying Matters - End of Life Strategies

24/08/2010

When someone that we care for, either professionally, or personally, or both, is coming to the end of their life Without communication and understanding, death and terminal illness can be a lonely and stressful experience, both for the person who is dying and for their friends and family. Dying people and their families can experience a tremendous sense of isolation and can feel shut out of social circles and distanced from their communities.

A lack of conversation is perhaps the most important reason why peoples' wishes go ignored or unfulfilled; if we do not know how to communicate what we want, and those around us do not know how to listen, it is almost impossible to express a clear choice. It has been said that what we fear most about dying is the associated loss of control. By empowering those that we care for to express their wishes, that control can be restored.

The Dying Matters coalition believes that promoting openness and communication are the first steps to achieving this. They are committed to supporting changing knowledge, attitudes and behaviours around death and dying, and aim to encourage a greater willingness to engage on death and bereavement issues. The website (link is noted below) offers support and help for people approaching their end of life, their families and carers, and offers helpful advice and strategies for families and medical and care professionals.