French YouTuber with dissociative identity disorder denied euthanasia by Belgian doctors

A YouTuber with multiple personality disorder is chronicling her attempt to commit suicide at a euthanasia clinic.

Olympe, a 23-year-old Frenchwoman, recently disclosed to the 255,000 subscribers of her mental health YouTube channel that she was “in contact with doctors” in Belgium, where assisted suicide is authorized.

The content creator suffers from dissociative identity disorder, a trauma-induced condition that can be extremely upsetting for individuals it impacts.

However, when approached by Olympe, Belgian physician Yves de Locht stated that clinics are not “euthanasia dispensers” and that the procedure of gaining access to assisted suicide services might take several months or years.

This follows the contentious suicide of a 23-year-old woman with mental health concerns who committed suicide in Belgium the previous year.

Olympe stated that she would drastically alter her content in response to online criticism.

What is Dissociative Identity Disorder?

‘DID’, formerly known as multiple personality disorder, is a condition resulting in the presence of two or more distinct and ‘relatively persistent’ identities in the sufferer.

The disorder affects around 1.5% of the general population and is caused by repeated or prolonged childhood trauma.

90% of persons with DID have a history of abuse and neglect.

The disorder manifests in early life, before the brain can form a whole, unified identity.

Typically, treatment consists of symptom management (‘palliative’ therapy) and psychotherapy. It is uncommon for the illness to improve without medical therapy.

In recent years, the number of diagnoses of the illness has increased considerably due in part to the introduction of more diagnostic tests in the field of psychology and new imaging techniques for brain tissue.

The illness frequently causes its patients extreme distress.

More than 70% of affected individuals attempt suicide at least once.

Olympe initially stated in an Instagram post, “During the fourth quarter of 2023, I will seek assisted suicide in Belgium.”

I have already contacted the physicians.

She continued, ‘This is not a debate. This is my life. It was difficult for me to accept the decision I made.

In an interview with Le Parisien, the Brussels physician de Locht, who was purportedly approached by Olympe, denied that negotiations had progressed.

He stated that the procedure may take months or perhaps years, and that Belgium was tired of being viewed as a “death ward” for France, where assisted suicide is forbidden.

Since then, the young YouTuber has emphasized she does not intend to serve as a “example” for young people and urges anyone with suicidal thoughts to “find people to lean on.”

In Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Germany, and Spain, euthanasia—the withdrawal or withholding of life-sustaining treatments—is legal.

Assisted suicide, which involves providing the patient with the means to take their own life, is prohibited in the majority of Europe.

While assisted suicide is lawful in Switzerland, active euthanasia is not.

Despite the fact that assisted suicide is illegal in France, a citizens’ council has begun discussing the country’s approach to end-of-life care and the legal position of assisted suicide.

In March of this year, recommendations will be made to the legislature.

In the United Kingdom, helping another person in committing suicide is punished by up to 14 years in prison.

Olympe spoke openly to her Instagram followers earlier this month.

Defining a “rational suicide” is fraught with ethical problems when assisted suicide is involved.

The scientific community is fragmented to some degree.

In 2019, 48.6% of questioned psychiatrists opposed assisted suicide for those diagnosed with severe and persistent mental illness.

Nearly one-third of respondents supported access to some degree, while 20% were ambivalent on the matter.

According to the authors, the number of psychiatric patients requesting assisted suicide is rising.

A 1994 study indicated that the availability of assisted suicide could lead to an increase in suicide rates among the general population, particularly among the young, due to copycat behavior and destigmatization.

In a report published last year, the authors emphasized the significance of assessing decision-making capacity when considering assisted death.

underlying mental health issues may complicate this situation.

Shanti De Corte, also 23 years old, chose suicide in Belgium a year ago, citing “intolerable” mental pain.

Corte was traumatized as a 2016 witness to the ISIS attack on Brussels Airport.

In May 2022, following psychiatric treatment and medicine, she decided to terminate her life.

Later, a neurologist stated that the choice was premature because not all possibilities had been exhausted, but claimed that he was overruled by the woman’s mother.

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