Ethics in Performance: Dying At Home

In May 2021, I was invited by Brighton and Sussex Medical School to take part in a conversation on zoom about dying at home for #DyingMattersAwarenessWeek.

Hosted by Bobbie Farsides, Professor of Clinical and Biomedical Ethics at BSMS, I shared the panel with end of life Doula, Li Mills and Palliative Care consultant Dr SImone Ali. The event was part of the Ethics in Performance series, and was an opportunity to read from and reflect upon the themes raised in my forthcoming memoir 36 Hours.

I have wrestled with the ethics of writing from life, which is why 36 Hours has been slow to enter the public domain. This event was a turning point because it was my first tangible opportunity to explore the work through the lens of the wider conversation about death and dying.

Following my husband’s death, I couldn’t find the book I wanted to read, so I wrote it. I didn’t want saccharine or euphemism. I wanted raw and real. I had always intended and hoped that 36 Hours might prove to be of some use to others going through a similar experience and that it might also prepare any reader for the possibility of caring for a loved one in the last stages of life.

The feedback from the event was positive and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to share my writing in such a forum. I look forward to further such platforms to share this work.

My thanks to Bobbie, Li, Simone and the BSMS team for convening the event.