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Rather macabre question born out of a conversation as we heard that someone had to have "that chat" with a consultant about their dad.

My (ESTJ) colleague asked me, if you had a finite amount of time to live, would you want to know? Take any scenario you want, such as you know you are seriously unwell and you sense that probably you have not long to live, would you want to know how long?

If you do want to know, or have that "inkling" what would you do in the time you had left?

I couldn't reply at the time, and I am still thinking about a response, but what are your thoughts?

BTW my colleague stated she wouldn't, but we didn't have a chance to talk about it further.
 

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I think if it was that close I would want to know - if it was six or sixty years than I probably wouldn't. I would hope that I didn't spend those last few months wasting the time I had left - I think that would be worse than actually dying.
 

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I wouldn't want to know unless I had an explicit reason for wanting to know, example: if I'd be working on a big project that would take all of my time I'd also want to know whether I was able to finish it in time (otherwise it would seem as wasted time to me). Otherwise I wouldn't want to know because I hate unnecessary deadlines, which in this case is quite literally a deadline. I just want to live my life to the fullest.
 

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i would absolutely want to know. i think it would be freeing, in a way.. it'd be the push i need to do everything i plan on doing in my life, just in a shorter time period. i would travel for the whole 6 months and record everything photographically.. it's what i love to do and i don't quite feel like i'm experiencing something unless i have the clarity of the lens. basically, i would just shove as many experiences into that short amount of time as i could!
 

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I would want to know. I would go around and try to talk to everyone I ever knew in life, and tell them my true perspectives on our friendship/relationship. I would try to help everyone currently in my life as much as possible by doing what I do - explaining things from my perspective.
 

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Definitely! It'd probably the happiest few months of my life too, given I'd likely to be more extroverted than usual and do all the things I've put off for months, years or decades...
 

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I would want to know. I would go around and try to talk to everyone I ever knew in life, and tell them my true perspectives on our friendship/relationship. I would try to help everyone currently in my life as much as possible by doing what I do - explaining things from my perspective.
Don't you think that'd a bit too late, not letting people know what you really think until you get to hear that you're dying? Shouldn't you always be honest to others about the way you feel and/ or think about them?

I can imagine that you'd want to revisit some of your old friends or loved ones and have a playful/insightful/fun/honest/ etc. evaluation of your relationship with them... but that'd be more of a final chat with an old friend rather than a ground breaking and relationship re-envisioning conversation. Perhaps I misunderstood your words, but it sounds to me as though you are holding back on precious conversations until it's to late to make a difference.
 

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If I was honest with everyone I talked to I would be unemployed with no friends. People do not want to hear the truth. <-- I doubt many like reading this sentence. People do not like hearing about their mistakes. I am being general, but this is true.

If you compliment and add, people will like you. If you critique and are brutal with your honesty, people will avoid you. Very few people prefer honesty and critique. Even those people would would like it selectively I would think.

Which sounds better -

A - I really like your ideas. Have you ever considered x?
B - You have a grasp of the concept, but you miss a consideration of x, and in doing so you consistently handicap yourself.

I word myself for A, but if I had 6 months to live I would word it for B. I would not have time to reinforce my ideas at a later date.
 

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You are taking honesty too literal, I meant honesty towards your friends and loved ones... Of course you will have to tell white lies and partial truths at times but completely isolating your true thoughts from others makes the relationships dull and meaningless. It's good to know your place and know what's socially acceptable but you must always try to be honest and fair towards those who truly care for you. Of course that doesn't equal 100% truthfulness, but it's a way to be open-minded and involved in the world around you.
 

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You are taking honesty too literal, I meant honesty towards your friends and loved ones... Of course you will have to tell white lies and partial truths at times but completely isolating your true thoughts from others makes the relationships dull and meaningless. It's good to know your place and know what's socially acceptable but you must always try to be honest and fair towards those who truly care for you. Of course that doesn't equal 100% truthfulness, but it's a way to be open-minded and involved in the world around you.
You read things into my comments that are not there.

I would want to know. I would go around and try to talk to everyone I ever knew in life, and tell them my true perspectives on our friendship/relationship. I would try to help everyone currently in my life as much as possible by doing what I do - explaining things from my perspective.
How is this hold back information? How is this not honest to my friends and family? Why does honesty even come up? I am dishonest with no one; I am sensitive to the reactions I cause.

In the event that I had 6 months to live, people would show more interest in my perspectives. That is how human nature works. It would be like statements made from a death bed, but I could share them without being in the hospital. I don't see how you get a lack of honesty and fairness out of this. I would not tell my father that the cigarettes he smoked for 40+ years will do him in. I have tried before several times and he does not like the line of discussion. Would it be fair for me to bring it up every time we talked? I think some of our last conversations would be another appropriate time to share that particular view of mine.
 

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I would try and preserve as much of me as I can: write down my most important ideas and thoughts, make sure the people who knew me understood me so they have my voice in their heads, have a kid, then go do the things I couldn't do before because I feared for my life. (thus fulfilling the prophecy)
 

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I'd enroll in college again and live in the dorms. Most fun I ever had in my life, bar none.

Think I could score pity sex with an excuse like 'six months left to live'?
 

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I would want to know, whether it's 6 months or 6 years.

I don't think my focus would be on relationships or living it up. mainly I would want to determine what to do with my stuff (specialized hobby sorts of things and esoteric collections) so that it isn't just thrown away. private journals would be destroyed.

my wishful-thinking scenario would be just to vanish quietly like I was never even here.
 

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I most certainly would want to know the exact time of my death. I don't understand why someone wouldn't want to know. It's not that I'd want to make a 'plan'--gosh how I hate planning, but I think it would be freeing and I feel like if I didn't know I'd obsess and theorize over my death. But if I knew, then I could concentrate more on living and focus my attention on other things.

What would I do?....That's a hard question because I don't feel like I have any 'set' goals and it would also depend on how much time I have left. I feel like the generic answer is, "Oh I'd travel..." and sure that would be nice, who wouldn't want to explore something they haven't seen before? But I think I'd want to accomplish something I'm already working on. At the moment, I'm a Deaf Studies major and I'm working towards my certification to become an American Sign Language interpreter. I think it would be a great moment to pass my certification test and maybe do one or two interpreting jobs for some big event I'm interested in.
 

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What was that antedeluvian statement...

Don't you think that'd a bit too late, not letting people know what you really think until you get to hear that you're dying? Shouldn't you always be honest to others about the way you feel and/ or think about them?

I can imagine that you'd want to revisit some of your old friends or loved ones and have a playful/insightful/fun/honest/ etc. evaluation of your relationship with them... but that'd be more of a final chat with an old friend rather than a ground breaking and relationship re-envisioning conversation. Perhaps I misunderstood your words, but it sounds to me as though you are holding back on precious conversations until it's to late to make a difference.

What was that famous quote? "Better late than never." I'd agree with the other dude; I mean, if you hate someone and you were nice to 'em before, just say so. XD Hehe, witness the furry in their eyes and whatnot; You most probably don't have any further use for their aquaintence/cooperation.
 
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