Woman dies by assisted suicide in Switzerland after cancer diagnosis and alleged abuse by husband

It has been claimed that a mother of three children who committed suicide in a Swiss clinic did so to get back at her lawyer husband who had custody of their children, according to the Daily Mail.

The woman, Catherine Kassenoff, 54, of Westchester, posted to Facebook in May 2023 announcing that she would be “ending my own life.”

‘She was just concerned that she had been treated abominably by her husband.’

Kassenoff wrote that “[i]t is with profound heartbreak, that I hope none of you ever experience, that I am writing my last post ever. Today, I will be ending my own life,” adding that “I will be doing so in a dignified and idyllic setting in Europe. There are simply no other options left.”

“In the last four years of my life, I have woken up every day to a nightmare like no other. I can no longer endure the abuse and terror of Allan Kassenoff… I have also endured the emotional devastation of being without my children for so long,” the message continued.

Kassenoff claimed that her husband, Allan Kassenoff, was abusing her and their three children. Ultimately, this is what led to her feeling that she had to take her own life, according to the report. Catherine worked as a successful litigator before passing away.

Allan was provided sole custody of the couple’s three daughters, but the details of this custody arrangement are unclear. Catherine decided to take her own life after losing custody of her children and being diagnosed with terminal cancer, per the report.

The Free Press reported that new details emerged about the case, suggesting that it was not as simple as Catherine had made it out to be. Former nannies claimed that Catherine had punished her own adopted daughter by “dripping water” on her all day to prevent her from sleeping. She was also accused of showing favoritism toward her other two daughters, who were later born through IVF.

Leading up to her death, Catherine was assessed by psychiatrist Colin Brewer, who had written his report for the Pegasos Swiss Association. In his report, he said Catherine was of “sound enough mine” to end her own life. Pegasos is known to help people end their lives even if they are not suffering from a chronic or terminal illness, according to the Free Press.

Brewer went on to reveal that Catherine had planned to kill herself two times before. She originally planned to end her life in October 2022, but it was postponed for administrative reasons.

The psychiatrist said her cancer diagnosis was never the reason why Catherine wished to end her life. He characterized it as an “existential assisted suicide.”

“She was just concerned that she had been treated abominably by her husband,” Brewer said.

However, Brewer never made a medical diagnosis and instead said Catherine’s untimely death was one of “understandable misery.”

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