The truth about dying to be explored at event with palliative care author

The truth about the process of dying will be the key topic to be discussed at an event at NUI Galway next week, addressed by bestselling author Dr Kathryn Mannix.

The event on Thursday next, 12 September at 7pm in room G018, Institute for Lifecourse and Society (ILAS ) on the North Campus, is taking place during Palliative Care Week, a campaign to raise awareness and increase understanding of palliative care.

Dr Mannix will give a special reading from her best-selling book, With the End in Mind, which draws on long experience in palliative care and in cognitive behaviour therapy in England.

As well as reading from her book, Dr Mannix will discuss its themes with Catriona Crowe, historian and curator of the First Thoughts Talks events at the Galway International Arts Festival.

Dr Mannix’s mission is to get people to understand dying, so that we can be better prepared and less afraid. She hopes that by talking more openly, planning ahead and using real words instead of euphemisms, we can live better as well as die better, and With the End in Mind is an invitation to reclaim the forgotten wisdom about life’s ending.

Told through a series of beautifully crafted stories taken from nearly four decades of clinical practice, With the End in Mind answers the most intimate questions about the process of dying with touching honesty and humanity. Kathryn makes a compelling case for the therapeutic power of approaching death, not with trepidation, but with openness, clarity, and understanding.

Brendan Kennelly, Lecturer with NUI Galway’s J.E. Cairnes School of Business and Economics and event organiser, said that Kathryn has learned that people have generally little or no idea what dying is like.

“People often have misconceptions about the process that makes them very afraid of it. Kathryn has generally found that people’s fears are reduced once the process of dying is explained to them in a kind respectful way.

“In particular, she believes that it is very important that everybody should be familiar with the normal, relatively predictable, steps that a dying person goes through. By understanding the dying process, grieving families will take the comfort of witnessing their loved one experience normal, gentle dying into their bereavement with them.

“In countries such as Ireland, dying is too often regarded primarily as a medical event. Kathryn thinks that dying is primarily a human event that has a medical dimension. She suggests that we should start planning for our own deaths while we are well,” he said.

Tickets are €10 (€8 for unwaged ) and can be purchased at the door or in advance at https://bit.ly/2lyUpVH. Copies of With the End in Mind will be available for purchase at the event.

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