Dad Wants Pregnant Wife Taken Off Life Support (VIDEO)

Heartbreaking 103

A husband who should have been celebrating his wife's pregnancy has instead found himself in a horrific scenario: His wife, who was 14 weeks pregnant, suffered what was most likely a pulmonary embolism (a blood clot), collapsed, and has been unconscious in the hospital on life support ever since. Erick Munoz and his wife, Marlise, both of whom had worked as EMTs, had discussed situations like this in the past, and Marlse had made it clear she would not want to be kept on life support if she had no quality of life. Erick wants to be true to her wishes. However, Texas law says that as long as there is a fetus involved, the woman must be kept alive.

According to Texas' Health and Safety Code, "A person may not withdraw or withhold life-sustaining treatment under this subchapter from a pregnant patient."

So Marlise is being kept alive by machine until the baby, which is still alive, can be brought into the world.

Erick, however, doesn't think this is the right thing to do. He told WFAA:

I don't agree with this law ... I don't. It's hard to reach the point where you wish your wife's body would stop.

Erick doesn't explain why he would want his wife taken off life support, which would also kill the baby, but the man probably has his reasons. One of them might be that while the mother suffered what could have been an embolism, the baby was without oxygen. So no one knows what kind of damage the baby may have suffered and what kind of condition he or she may be in.

Erick and Marlise already have one child, and bringing another into the world who won't have a mother to care for it, and this child could be severely disabled, well, I don't blame Erick a bit for worrying about how he will manage it. Texas law will probably not step in and offer a full-time caregiver. And even if it does, this is a HUGE burden to put on someone.

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This is a tough decision, but at the end of the day, Erick should get to make the decision about what he wants since he is the one who will have 100 percent of the responsibility. Not the state. How ironic that this is a state that is always blathering about the government staying out of people's lives!

What would you do?



Image via WFAA

fathers, pregnancy health


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nonmember avatar Kristi

I find myself wondering why the man wouldn't want the baby kept alive, but he must have his reasons. Very sad that his wife's wishes can't be carried out. Did the man and his wife actually discuss her wishes if she were pregnant....I wonder if she would want the same. ???

nonmember avatar Victoria

I agree with Kristi... I've always told my husband that if I have been on life support for a month or two, and there is absolutely no chance that I'm going to wake up... Pull the plug. However, that decision instantly changes if I am pregnant. If I am pregnant, definitely wait until the baby is born.

Kattey Kattey

The travesty here is that the state has completely overruled this woman's wishes. They wish to keep her alive to be an incubator for a fetus that is more than likely irreversibly developmentally impaired due to the lack of oxygen from the woman's collapse. The state should have no say in the matter.

The fact is the woman never wanted to be on life support. That needs to be respected. Just because the previous posters are okay with being an incubator for a child that will never have a normal life doesn't mean every woman is.

adamat34 adamat34

I agree with the above. There is a reason we provide advanced directives to our families. He has to make the decision no matter how hard, he made the harsh decision and now hes being fought. Oxygen the fetus will have damaging and lasting effects to health and development if not already. Let this man do what he needs then heal.

Jacee... Jacee2348

The couple should have had a legal document stating their respective wishes (yes, hindsight is 20/20 but still); who's to say this conversation ever really took place just because the husband says so?  Also, with today's technology, the doctors should have a good idea what kind of damage the fetus has suffered.  Either way, I personally could not shut down this baby's chance for life just based on the "chance" that there could be damage from lack of oxygen.  Too many variables for me...  That's just my opinion and preference though.  I do pray the baby makes it to a safe delivery date and is born healthy; I hope the dad can live with some very tough decisions and outcomes regardless of how it turns out.  Very difficult set of circumstances for sure......

nonmember avatar SickOfHearingIt

Legal documentation doesn't matter when the state of Texas passes laws turning woman into incubators. Rick Perry is the scum of the Earth.

Em Chappell-Root

Imagine trying to explain to the son that Mommy is dead, but the doctors are trying to keep her body alive to save the baby and that it probably won't work, but that's why we haven't buried Mommy yet. Heartbreaking. 

nonmember avatar randi

Why should the state be able to make decisions about this woman's life? It's none of their business. Religion has no place in government.

Amber Richardson

So, they are going to force a woman who doesnt want to be on life support, to be on life support for 9 months? Thats cruel to the woman, the child, and the husband. 

Kattey Kattey

This really is a heartbreaking story.

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