Two BBC gems

Two wonderful programmes on the BBC recently and both still viewable on i player.  One Simon’s Choice and the other Life After Suicide.  The first showed the journey of one man who decided he wanted to go to Switzerland to have an assisted death due to living with a progressive disease.  It was complex and thought provoking in terms of how those around him felt – his wife, his friends and him.  It raised questions about who has the right to decide and felt a helpful addition to the often heated and polarised debate about this subject.  My sympathy lay with both sides although I do personally support an individual’s right to make this choice.   We really need to listen to one another when talking about this subject and not just rush to defend our positions.

The second was a beautifully narrated film about Angela Samata who came and spoke at our first Kicking the Bucket festival and will be coming again this year. She spoke about her experiences when her partner took his own life so honestly and interviewed others in similar situations and experts in the field.  A very moving and brave film.  The most important message I take from it and which is confirmed by people I know who sadly find themselves facing a death of this kind is how vital it is to talk about it.   This is true of all deaths but even more so when someone kills themself. The taboo is doubled and the isolation caused by this can compound the problems left behind in a brutal way.  It is often hard to open up but as someone I know said to me “Dialogue heals.”  It was called Life after Suicide and did offer a lot of encouragement to those who feel they can never recover from the loss.   And it reminded me what a tremendous city Liverpool is. The majestic Mersey and all those fabulous buildings.

And I would just like you to know that I also enjoy watching all sorts of other films too but I am not sure you want to know about the peculiarities of my wider film taste!!