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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review August 13, 2009 / 23 Menachem-Av 5769

No burden too heavy for family

By Betsy Hart



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In the classic Hollies song, "He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother" the group sings:


"The road is long / With many a winding turn / That leads us to who knows where … / But I'm strong / Strong enough to carry him / He ain't heavy, he's my brother /

His welfare is of my concern / No burden is he to bear / We'll get there …

… It's a long, long road / From which there is no return / While we're on the way to there / Why not share …"


Well in 2009, what if the burden is to help care for that brother even as he suffers and dies?


Apparently, yes. As Nancy Gibbs notes in a recent Time magazine essay, "Already in Oregon, one-third of those who chose assisted suicide last year cited the burden on their families and caregivers as a reason."


Gibbs was commenting on the recent joint suicide of renowned conductor Sir Edward Downes and his wife. Both elderly, he was healthy while she was terminally ill. Together they went to Switzerland where they paid a clinic to legally help them commit suicide. Their adult children were with them.


They didn't want to suffer, or be a burden to others. Apparently, that's too heavy a load.


There are all kinds of reasons to not artificially prolong life. But I hope I never get into a situation where I want to artificially limit my life so that I'm not a burden to loved ones.


When you think about it, we are all "terminal." Along the way, allowing each other to bear our burdens is one thing that separates us from animals. To let a loved one care for me might be the very thing that leads to greater compassion or less selfishness in him. And I might have to get over my pride in not "needing help." To accept that I really am dependent on others. So my suffering could be a gift to both of us.


Conversely, I want to be open to receiving that gift from another.


I'm fiercely independent and self-reliant by nature. But already in the five years I've been single, I've become better at laying down my pride and asking for help. And, I've learned to share much more in the burdens of others. Both sides of that equation have profoundly enriched me.


No I'm not suggesting we wallow in pity, seek joy in victimhood status, or suffer for the sake of it. I'm all for ease in life.


And I am not minimizing the very real sacrifices and burden that caregivers often experience.


But I am convinced there is a growing mindset in our culture that genuine suffering has no value. That it must be avoided, even at the cost of life itself.


Well, I think that's selfish. So, memo to kids and family: I'm not checking out early just to avoid being a burden to you. And I sure don't want you doing that for me.

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