UPDATE: Conflicting media reports call into question exactly where and how Pothoven died. While it is not disputed that she sought legalized euthanasia, it is not clear whether that was the method by which she ultimately committed suicide. Scope News will provide more details if they become available.
A Dutch teen is dead after announcing on social media that she had suffered from depression dating back to a sexual assault at the age of 11.
Seventeen-year-old Noa Pothoven reportedly took advantage of laws in the Netherlands allowing individuals over the age of 16 to opt for assisted suicide if their condition is not expected to improve.
“I will get straight to the point: within a maximum of 10 days I will die,” she wrote. “After years of battling and fighting, I am drained. I have quit eating and drinking for a while now, and after many discussions and evaluations, it was decided to let me go because my suffering is unbearable.”
In a recent Instagram message, she said: “Love is letting go, in this case.”
When she was 16, her parents refused to allow her to seek the fatal solution to her problems, urging her instead to seek treatment. Around the same time, she was reportedly admitted to an area hospital to have a feeding tube inserted after she stopped eating.
Mother Lisette said she was “in shock” when she heard of her daughter’s mental state, adding that she and Noa’s father, Frans, wanted the girl to “choose the path of life.”