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Physically Healthy Woman, 28, Set To Be Euthanised Shares Heartbreaking Reason She Won’t Have A Funeral

Zoraya ter Beek, a physically healthy 28-year-old who has chosen to be euthanised next month, has explained why she won't have a funeral.
Credit: Zoraya ter Beek

A physically healthy 28-year-old who has chosen to be euthanised next month has explained the heartbreaking reason why she won’t be having a funeral.

Euthanasia is the practice of intentionally ending life to eliminate pain and suffering. It’s a controversial subject, with many people having strong and conflicting views on the matter.

The parents of a 33-year-old who chose to be euthanised have opened up about the reason they supported her decision.

And now, a physically healthy woman has explained why she won’t be having a funeral after being euthanised.

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Zoraya ter Beek resides in a small Dutch town near the German border.

Although she’s in physical good health, the 28-year-old has chosen to end her own life – and her decision has made headlines.

In response to ter Beek’s choice, one person writes: “Her choice, I’m sure it hasn’t been an easy decision but the peace of going on your own terms in a peaceful and controlled manner sounds so dignified.”

Another adds: “I think it’s insane that people would rather see someone alive and suffering than not suffering… at least with an assisted death we get to say our goodbyes.”

While a third pens: “I support this. I am sorry she has suffered so much. I believe telling people it’s selfish are also selfish. May you finally rest in peace.”

Zoraya ter Beek
Zoraya ter Beek, 28, has chosen to be euthanised. Credit: Zoraya ter Beek

Stef Groenewoud, a healthcare ethicist at Theological University Kampen, tells The Free Press that euthanasia has evolved from an ‘ultimate last resort’ to a more acceptable option presented by healthcare professionals.

“I see the phenomenon, especially in people with psychiatric diseases, and especially young people with psychiatric disorders, where the healthcare professional seems to give up on them more easily than before,” Groenewoud adds.

While Kit Vanmechelen, a psychiatrist who assesses applicants and performs euthanasia, informs the BBC she’s ‘grateful’ that euthanasia is now being offered as an ‘alternative’ to suicide.

“The ones I know will commit suicide are terminal in my opinion. And I don’t want to abandon my patients who are not able to go on with their lives,” Vanmechelen explains.

Ter Beek, who has autism, depression, anxiety, trauma, and borderline personality disorder (BPD), shares that the decision to end her life is due to the unbearable nature of her condition.

Zoraya ter Beek
Zoraya ter Beek has depression, autism and borderline personality disorder. Credit: X

Autism is a lifelong developmental disability which affects how people communicate and interact with the world, as per the National Autistic Society.

Depression is a common but serious mood disorder that causes severe symptoms, such as affecting how a person thinks or feels, or goes about their daily activities, as per the National Institute of Mental Health.

Anxiety is ‘a feeling of fear, dread, and uneasiness’ that is not temporary and can be overwhelming, as defined by MedlinePlus.

While BPD is a mental health condition that affects the way a person feels about themselves and others, making it difficult to function in everyday life, according to Mayo Clinic.

The 28-year-old claims a psychiatrist told her: “There’s nothing more we can do for you. It’s never gonna get any better.”

Reflecting on this, ter Beek says: “I was always very clear that if it doesn’t get better, I can’t do this anymore.”

As ter Beek approaches her final days, she tells RTL News: “I don’t want to die, but I can’t live.

“Then it’s a choice between growing old, sick and with a lot of misery, or honouring myself and saying: I’m quitting.”

Zoraya ter Beek
Zoraya ter Beek has shared the heartbreaking reason she won’t be having a funeral. Credit: Zoraya ter Beek

The 28-year-old has since announced she’s stepping down from social media, posting on X, former Twitter: “It was an honour for me to provide insights to people who were open to learning something.”

Ter Beek has also opened up about her decision not to have a funeral.

She plans to undergo euthanasia on her sofa and be cremated afterwards to spare her boyfriend from tending to her grave.

“I did not want to burden my partner with having to keep the grave tidy,” ter Beek explains.

The Free Press adds: “There won’t be any funeral. She doesn’t have much family; she doesn’t think her friends will feel like going. Instead, her boyfriend will scatter her ashes in ‘a nice spot in the woods’ that they have chosen together, she said.”

Ter Beek concludes: “We have not picked an urn yet, but that will be my new house!”

If you or someone you know is affected by any of the issues raised in this story, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline in the US at 800-273-TALK (8255) or text Crisis Text Line at 741741.

In the UK, the Samaritans are available 24/7 if you need to talk. You can contact them for free by calling 116 123, emailing [email protected] or heading to the website to find your nearest branch.

Do you have a story for us? If so, email us at [email protected]. All contact will be treated in confidence.

Written by Annie Walton Doyle

Annie Walton Doyle is a content editor at IGV who specialises in trending, lifestyle and entertainment news. She graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London, with a degree in English Literature. Annie has previously worked with organisations such as The Huffington Post, The Guardian, The Telegraph, Harvard University, the Pulitzer Prize and 22 Words.