90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Monday, October 1, 2012

A Conversation With Dad About Life’s End

Charlie Ritz and Carey Goldberg, father and daughter, having a conversation about end of life choices (George Hicks/WBUR)

There’s a subject most of us say is extremely important: making sure our family is not burdened by difficult end-of-life decisions.

A recent survey by the California Health Foundation found that 60 percent of people feel that way. But the survey also finds that 56 percent of people have not communicated end-of-life wishes.

A national initiative, recently launched by a group of media and medical professionals, encourages conversations about end of life care well in advance.

It’s called “The Conversation Project” and it aims to get families and loved ones talking about the kind of care they want at the end of their lives. One of the tools of “The Conversation Project” is a starter kit of questions. Carey Goldberg, co-host of WBUR’s Commonhealth Blog, sat down with her 85-year-old dad Charlie Ritz, who felt it was an important conversation.

“It’s important to me that you…if you have to help me in any way, that there’s no guilt involved, that my wishes are what’s involved here,” Ritz said.

Goldberg said that though she hesitated at first, it was a relief to get the topic out in the open.

“I had worried about the responsibility of having to maybe take measures to make decisions that would mean the final end for him,” she told WBUR’s Radio Boston. “So this conversation clarified for me that a real priority for him was for me to not feel guilt, and that felt very freeing. That made me realize that I only need to do what really feels right for me while keeping his wishes in mind, so it actually lifted a load from me.”

Guest:

  • Carey Goldberg, co-host of WBUR’s Commonhealth Blog, and her 85-year-old dad Charley Ritz decided to give it a try

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

October 20 Comment

Alternate Routes: Lasting Impressions From The Road

Our digital and social media producer Rachel Rohr is back from a month-long trip cross-country, talking with young Americans.

October 20 Comment

Mario Batali Goes Farm To Table

The chef and restaurateur discusses the "farm to table" trend and shares recipes with a hearty and rustic twist.

October 17 3 Comments

Toll Lanes: Coming Soon To Almost Every Major City In Florida

Reporting by the Florida Center for Investigative Reporting found the toll lanes are developed without much public input, and without reliable knowledge of the cost.

October 17 Comment

USAID: Challenges And Small Victories In Liberia

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has killed more than 4,500 people in the region with an estimated 8,900 more people currently infected.