Be with y’all in a second. I have to light this cigarette and take a long deep drag so I can blow smoke in the faces of people who don’t like hypotheticals and yet still read the threads so they can bitch about them.
:: lights cig, etc ::
Now that I’ve increased my lung cancer risk, let’s get to the story, which is about Chris, a man in his mid-40s, with a similarly-aged wife, Caryl, and four kids, Casey, Courtney, Chloe, and Agamemnon, ranging from 11 to 4 in age. At 25, Chris invented a useful gadget that made them millions. Caryl hasn’t worked since college, and Chris pretty much retired at 39; he spends his time doting on his kids and wife, all of whom adore him.
A while ago Chris was diagnosed with an uncommon genetic disease. This ailment causes first blindness, then deafness, then paralysis. With appropriate care the victim can live for many years after that point – years in which he’ll be totally dependent on others. There is typically about a two-year gap between the first onset of symptoms and the paralysis, and no effective therapy.
Chris is an athletic, clever guy. The thought of even being blind terrifies him, much less the other stuff. So he makes a plan. After verifying that none of the kids have the recessive gene that causes the disease, he puts his affairs in order. After making sure that Caryl and the kids would be financially taken care of – she’d never have to go to work, the kids would all have money for college and grad school, et cetera – and without telling Caryl what he planned, he waited for his vision to start to fail, as that was the first symptom. When that day came there was still no treatment for the disease and no prospect for same, so he rented a cabin in the woods; texted his lawyer to meet him there; and, once he had confirmation that the lawyer was en route, put a shotgun in his mouth and pulled the trigger. Among other things, his lawyer had instructions to deliver his suicide note to Caryl, who was, of course, devastated, though not as much as four-year-old Aggy.
Did Chris betray his family by checking out as he did?