Elder Abuse

  1. A 70 year old woman was mercilessly thrashed by her own son in New Delhi on December 9
  2. She was found bleeding from her nose and had bruises on her face.
  3. It is not an isolated or unique case of parental or elderly abuse.
  4. In a survey, conducted by an NGO HelpAge India, Out of 1200 senior citizens surveyed across 12 cities in 8 states, 61% of senior citizens accused their sons and daughter in laws of being abusive.
  5. Interestingly, daughters have also found a place among the top three abusers though their percentage is significantly small at 7% but there has been an increase in this over last year.
  6. India currently has nearly 10 crore people who are above 60 and the number is expected to touch 32 crore by 2050.
  7. The data makes the situation alarming for the elderly in the country.
  8. Part of the problem is that almost all the elderly, nearly 98 percent, chose not to file legal complaints.
  9. Considering the abuse as a family matter which if leaked would bring shame to themselves and the family, elderly chose to keep quiet and the abuser keeps abusing.
  10. Even if the complaint is filed and the police takes action and jails the abuser, who would care for them after being alone? The government does not have adequate old age homes and the services there are pathetic.
  11. The bigger problem is that what comes out to hear and see are the most extreme ones like the case mentioned. It means that the number of unnoticed abuses are unimaginable!
  12. Senior citizens have complained that verbal abuse is most distressing and 41% of those surveyed said they were subjected to verbal abuse.
  13. Disrespect for the parents and neglect are also two other kinds of abuse faced by the senior citizens.
  14. Next concern in the row is elder dumping.  Its like taking old mother or grandmother away from her home in Delhi in the name of a pilgrimage and leaving her alone at a bus stop in Haridwar to fend for herself.
  15. Vrindavan in UP is not a solace for elderly women for nothing. It is sadly the biggest dumping ground for elders, specially widow women.
  16. Its really needs a heart of stone for someone to dump their parents to feed for themselves in their old ages.
  17. If children plan to dump their parents, it is requested to inform them at an early age so that they can make arrangements.
  18. The worse is faced by elderly women.
  19. It is because of the fact that the life expectancy of women is higher than men and they are also younger to husbands, when married.
  20. As a result, husbands die early leaving wives behind on the mercy of their son, daughter and daughter in laws.
  21. And what happenes next in some cases has already been discussed above.
  22. One would say that crimes against elderly are on rise, but actually it is the individual morality which is on the decline.
  23. An action is called a crime when it is against the provisions of the law and more precisely, an action is only a crime when it can actually be recorded.
  24. Since in most of the cases, elders don’t and cannot approach for justice, the cruelty becomes the norm.
  25. What does this all bring to the society? Collapse!
  26. The young ones would know their fate in their old ages and as a result, more than spending on their children and their growth, the focus would to be safeguard for their old ages.
  27. This breaks the societal bond between the old and the young. This is already happening in the western societies.
  28. The ethics and morality of a society is checked by the treatment it gives to the people who are not contributing financially.
  29. When the parents are earning and helping the kids out, they are seen as great and world over the social media is flooded with messages of ‘happy mothers and fathers day’.
  30. When the parents are no more contributing and need the help themselves, they receive only the neglect and the abuse.
  31. The abuser of an elderly may be either by an outsider, such as a servant or a stranger like thief and also dear ones like the son, daughter or the daughter in law.
  32. The abuse by a stranger leaves them physically hurt, but the abuse by someone whom they have nurtured whole their life with all sacrifices, leaves an life long emotional trauma along with the temporary physical one.
  33. With demonetization and low access to banking services, one can imagine what additional pain they must be undergoing.
  34. They have to disclose whatever savings they had to their tormentors and now would have been left penniless and completely dependent on high son and dry banking facilities!
  35. The pain and the concern has been conveyed and there is nothing more to read now, so spread this concern wide across so that the kind hearted people and globe trotting government acts for the ones who are themselves not able to!