Caregiver, What Would You Do?

Life’s Difficult Choices

Life is full of choices. However, there are times when we must choose among impossible options. Do we extend Mom’s life because we can’t imagine the world without her despite her desire to die? Do we free Dad from pain and suffering and lose out on a financial windfall if he survives for four more months?

These are some of the unspoken realities families face—ethical and moral dilemmas that are easy to judge at a distance until we come face to face with such a choice.

Years ago, there was a difficult philosophical and ethical dilemma presented during a job interview. If we’re to acknowledge that we’re each unique and walk diverse paths, then we will accept multiple answers to the following situation. Our answers will depend on our beliefs and immediate needs.

Read this carefully. Ponder it. Ask your friends if need be. But answer within 24 hours or sooner. Again, depending on your situation, for example, as a caregiver, you may likely take one approach, another person may follow a different path.

The Bus Stop – What Will You Do?

One evening, while strong winds blow, you drive in the pouring rain when you see three people at a bus stop.

  1. An elderly woman who looks as if she will surely die soon.
  2. An old friend who once saved your life.
  3. The perfect partner you’ve been dreaming about.

Which person would you choose knowing there can only be one passenger in your car?

Rodin The Thinker Photo by Crystal Borde 100_1022Think about your options and the impact of your choices. Why did you choose as you did?

Write your answer in the (moderated) comments below.

In our fast-paced world seeking immediate answers, give yourself time to think. Discuss with others. You might find some answers online if you’re afraid to post your original thoughts; but I advise against this. Again, this is more about us sharing different perspectives in order to expand our ways of seeing and acting in the world. Please post your comment below within 24 hours of reading this.

Caregivers and job applicants are not the only ones who face such difficult choices. With technology advancing and relying more on artificial intelligence (AI), engineers must create decision-making algorithms. It’s no longer an issue of one or another. Choices are growing more difficult. In some cases, values are weighed, such as engineers creating learning algorithms for automated cars. For example, how should the self-driving car respond when faced an either-or choice of continuing straight and hitting a parent crossing the road or veering slightly to the right to miss the parent and hit a small child? (Yes, it would be better if the car’s programming forced it to brake soon enough to avoid such a potential fatality.)

I will follow-up with a reply to the bus stop inquiry in the comments section, next week Monday. Until then, I look forward to reading yours below.

The post Caregiver, What Would You Do? first appeared on The Caregivers Voice.

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