The Realities Of Elder Abuse

The arm of an elderly man overhanging a blue wall
Image credit: photo by Michael Schaffler on Unsplash.

Elder abuse is on the rise, and the cost is enormous - both financially and emotionally. MetLife Mature Market Institute estimated the financial loss from abuses to be at least $2.6 billion a year (2009.)

Recent testimonies on the subject - most notably, one by Mickey Rooney - tell the harrowing tales of exploitation and mistreatment by the elderly, often by their own family members.

Often:

  • These older adults are in the care of their grown children or trusted medical professionals.
  • Dependent on others for care, they may sign over financial responsibility - only to be scammed and left penniless.

Sometimes, elder abuse manifests as the withholding of food or proper care, or negligence on the behalf of the caretaker.

The elderly are in an especially vulnerable position, and the same study states that only 1 in every 6 cases of elder abuse is reported.

What are your thoughts? Have you seen or heard of any instances of elder abuse? Let us know your experiences in the comments section below.


Abuse of the elderly is a serious detriment to the health, dignity, and well-being of older adults. If you suspect a loved one is being abused - or are victim to exploitation yourself - contact proper authorities immediately. For assistance in dealing with the long-term effects of elder care and growing old, a qualified psychotherapist can help. Contact us today at (516) 221-9494 for more information.

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