Journalist Ellen Goodman writes, "Too many people we love had not died in the way they would choose. Too many survivors were left feeling depressed, guilty, uncertain whether they'd done the right thing."
According to a survey conducted by a non-profit, The Conversation Project, the primary reason that people did not discuss end of life plans with their loved one's was because it was "too soon."
As the author continues, "...it's always too soon..until it's too late." As a result, many folks have not thought adequately about end of life decisions.
The Conversation Project has developed a "roadmap" that stimulates conversation about relationships, priorities, and approaches at the end of life.
Although seemingly simple, it will be interesting to see if the roadmap can address a serious gap in both healthcare delivery and social relationships.
We still need to transform the cultural norm from not talking about how we want to live at the end of life to talking about it. The real work to close the gap is not just for doctors and patients. It’s for mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, families and friends. We have to bring people to the kitchen table to talk with those they love to have the conversation. And to do this before there is a crisis. Not in the I.C.U.