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14-Year-Old Decides Against Assisted Suicide

An article from First Things relates the story of Valentina Maureira, a fourteen-year old from Chile who suffered from cystic fibrosis, and desperately wanted to take her own life. She even made a YouTube video begging her government to legalize assisted suicide. Valentina admitted that the idea to end her life began after she heard about the case of Brittany Maynard, the twenty-nine-year-old woman who campaigned for the legalization of assisted suicide before ending her own life.

Maureira did not have access to assisted suicide, because it was illegal in Chile and she was a minor. Good thing. She changed her mind after receiving first a visit from Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, a trained pediatrician. Valentina's father Fredy Maureira said his daughter especially was moved by a visit from an Argentine family whose children have been stricken by the incurable respiratory illness. He said she also was given hope by meeting a patient who has survived beyond age 20.

Before she died from the disease (not assisted suicide) she told the El Mercurio newspaper that "there are people who have led me to change my way of thinking." Her father complained that the media were only interested in her story when she wanted to die.

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