2

votes

How long do you want to live?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 10, 2012 at 1:00 PM

BBC is running a series of shows about the perils of old age, focusing on the human aspect of suffering and the economic aspect of sustainability, particularly with regards to pensions and the NHS

I'm quite lucky in that, despite a predisposition to depression, there is no history of disease in my family, my grandparents are in there 80s and quite active (playing bowls and holidaying in Italy) and my great granddad lived into his 100s

By the time I'm old enough, retirement age will be something silly like 75, that's if I even get a state pension. But I guess if you stay fit and eat healthily the perils of old age can be ameliorated, I see people who are verging on obese now whose quality of life in old age will surely be dreadful

I don't know what advances in technology there will be in medicine by 2060 (potentially the year I will retire if I don't get hit by a car or WWIII claims us all) but even if I stay as healthy as I can through diet and exercise I don't want to live forever. The only comfort of death is that it happens to everyone

Those who are eating and living well to improve their quality of life must also be looking to increase their longevity also. But I personally wouldn't want to live much past 90 (if I'm even lucky enough to live that long) unless advancements in technology make it much more comfortable

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 11:40 PM

Nothing wrong with enjoying too. I have a few rivers on my list that I'd like to explore.

276a5e631b62f8e0793987c0496364bb

(1644)

on July 10, 2012
at 06:24 PM

That settles it, then. I'm gonna be a robot when I grow up!

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on July 10, 2012
at 05:49 PM

Actually the singularity is when technology becomes smart enough to upgrade itself, at which point any of the abilities you talk about will become possible quite quickly (compared to today). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 05:03 PM

note the above should have said NG tube. never saw anyone pull out a G tube.

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 04:10 PM

All that said, I've seen people who pulled out IVs and G-tubes and refusing to eat. I'm okay with that. If it were up to me I would not force restarting those things.

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 04:04 PM

I've signed DNR orders on two people already. One was when I was in a guardianship. It made me unpopular with the rest of the group, but he died with dignity. The other is my Mother in law. Severe dementia and all I can do is sit by and love til the end. Hastening death is not a solution in the long term care debate, at least not in my opinion.

7e6644836cdbcbe2b06307ff7db92d31

(693)

on July 10, 2012
at 03:33 PM

http://nymag.com/news/features/parent-health-care-2012-5/

4ec0fe4b4aab327f7efa2dfb06b032ff

(5145)

on July 10, 2012
at 02:00 PM

I've heard it used both ways. Maybe it just means when computers and consciousness meld somehow?

276a5e631b62f8e0793987c0496364bb

(1644)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:53 PM

I thought the singularity was when robots became sentient and wiped us out?

Fd7b128cf714044a86d8bd822c7a8992

(4292)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:43 PM

I agree - I'd rather live to be 80 as a happy, independent adult and then get hit by a bus and die than live to be 95 as a miserable and slowly degenerating vegetable in a diaper and a wheelchair.

4ec0fe4b4aab327f7efa2dfb06b032ff

(5145)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:40 PM

I think it would take untold thousands of CDs to store what's in a human brain. I did hear someone predict that the "singularity", the point where we can download our consciousness onto a computer, will occur in 2047. So if you could just make it until then, you could live forever!

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10 Answers

7
Af2662fc82df87952abb3fdf16b20aa4

(410)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:28 PM

I want to live for as long as I have a good quality of life.

Assuming that I'll have things like grandkids/ great grandkids, new books, films and music to check out and hobbies and interests that I can still explore, I don't want to set an arbitrary number.

Fd7b128cf714044a86d8bd822c7a8992

(4292)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:43 PM

I agree - I'd rather live to be 80 as a happy, independent adult and then get hit by a bus and die than live to be 95 as a miserable and slowly degenerating vegetable in a diaper and a wheelchair.

3
5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on July 10, 2012
at 05:51 PM

Well, let's just say if they created a cure for ageing today it would be the one and only time you would see me camping out the night before to get a good place in line to buy it.

1
363d0a0277a8b61ada3a24ab3ad85d5a

(4642)

on July 11, 2012
at 03:07 AM

I want to live as long as possible, see as many sights, cities, counties, and have as many adventures as possible, read more books, swim in more bodies of water, etc. I want to be able to relax but to feel productive, I want to garden and a small farm again (how I grew up) and have kids, grandkids, even great grandkids. Quality of life is definitely a factor, so I am just focusing on the positives, and just hoping for the best, planning to whatever I can and allowing for flexibility.

1
Bf2291448a06d573f0fdc87cd514e512

on July 10, 2012
at 07:54 PM

I want to live as long as I'm enjoying life. Thriving Ivory puts it pretty well.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GWcXuu16ttc

'if I can't see the sun, then maybe I should go.'

1
E95216c62a14d21c371fcbf2fed8469b

(1867)

on July 10, 2012
at 04:16 PM

I want a long fruitful life. I have a lot of books to read and places to go to hike, walk and ride my bicycle.

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 11:40 PM

Nothing wrong with enjoying too. I have a few rivers on my list that I'd like to explore.

1
Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 02:47 PM

As a Christian I believe that we live each day using our time, talents, and abilities as wisely as possible. If trials and pain come, and they do, we carry on with grace. Nobody can add a single day to their own life on earth, but we take care so we can serve.

Years ago, in the nursing home, I took care of a man who was an award winning doctorate scientist. His life work was stopped suddenly at age 35 by a CVA. The brain seemed to still be there but he was partially paralyzed and non verbal. His mom would come and take him out on weekends. A major feat since he had an indwelling cath and feeding tube. He used a communication board, laughed and was a very sweet guy. I would never say his life was less valuable at that point. Certainly his mom was still glad to have him alive.

Sometimes I think we're morons to entertain questions like this.

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 05:03 PM

note the above should have said NG tube. never saw anyone pull out a G tube.

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 04:10 PM

All that said, I've seen people who pulled out IVs and G-tubes and refusing to eat. I'm okay with that. If it were up to me I would not force restarting those things.

7e6644836cdbcbe2b06307ff7db92d31

(693)

on July 10, 2012
at 03:33 PM

http://nymag.com/news/features/parent-health-care-2012-5/

Bece741db5f5fed6bafa12e3548f973f

(715)

on July 10, 2012
at 04:04 PM

I've signed DNR orders on two people already. One was when I was in a guardianship. It made me unpopular with the rest of the group, but he died with dignity. The other is my Mother in law. Severe dementia and all I can do is sit by and love til the end. Hastening death is not a solution in the long term care debate, at least not in my opinion.

1
09bdfdb3be1bb05b8aea79d55afd9e30

(174)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:31 PM

For as long as I am viable, and as long as it takes to be of significance.

0
5e63e3fa78e998736106a4a5b9aef58c

on July 11, 2012
at 05:10 AM

I want to live a full, rich life. And then I want to drop dead. No lingering decay and decrepitude, no isolation and irrelevance, no dehumanization and dependency.

I'm 45. I don't know when I'm going to die. It could be tomorrow, it could be 60 years from now, or it could be at any point in between. But I want to be fully alive, active, and engaged right up until it happens. It's not the actual dying that I'm afraid of; it's all the humiliating unpleasantness most people have to go through to get there that I hope to avoid.

0
1edb06ded9ccf098a4517ca4a7a34ebc

on July 10, 2012
at 01:43 PM

"I'm going to Iowa for an award. Then I'm appearing at Carnegie Hall, it's sold out. Then I'm sailing to France to be honoured by the French government -- I'd give it all up for one erection." - Groucho Marx

Great quote but also relevant to my answer. I'd like to live for as long as I am still youthful enough to get a stiffy, and not a day more. Seriously :)

0
276a5e631b62f8e0793987c0496364bb

(1644)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:18 PM

"...if we can store music on a compact disc, why can't we store a man's intelligence and personality on one?" - Cave Johnson

By the time I'm 100 we'll all be living in robot bodies! ...right?

276a5e631b62f8e0793987c0496364bb

(1644)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:53 PM

I thought the singularity was when robots became sentient and wiped us out?

5457372e78a910c00cd1dd579ecbdce3

(1230)

on July 10, 2012
at 05:49 PM

Actually the singularity is when technology becomes smart enough to upgrade itself, at which point any of the abilities you talk about will become possible quite quickly (compared to today). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity

4ec0fe4b4aab327f7efa2dfb06b032ff

(5145)

on July 10, 2012
at 02:00 PM

I've heard it used both ways. Maybe it just means when computers and consciousness meld somehow?

276a5e631b62f8e0793987c0496364bb

(1644)

on July 10, 2012
at 06:24 PM

That settles it, then. I'm gonna be a robot when I grow up!

4ec0fe4b4aab327f7efa2dfb06b032ff

(5145)

on July 10, 2012
at 01:40 PM

I think it would take untold thousands of CDs to store what's in a human brain. I did hear someone predict that the "singularity", the point where we can download our consciousness onto a computer, will occur in 2047. So if you could just make it until then, you could live forever!

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