Thank You for writing into AskPatty!! To address your concern of your vehicle wanting to "die" when you turn your A/C on, you may have a few factors (engine load #1) compressor clutch pulls around 3-5amps from your alternator this is normal. (engine load #2) the A/C compressor bogs down your engine at low idle speeds and high output of air, also normal. However, you may have a faulty Idle Air Control Valve (IAC) this can cause the car to stall if the valve is not communicating properly with the main computer on Air/Fuel ratio. I recommend an inspection.
Hope this Helps!