We hear a lot about women and men getting abused by their partners but we do not hear about the elderly getting abused mentally or physically by their own children and in-laws. Frankly, I’m sick and tired of hearing about elderly people getting bullied – over the years, there have been so many elderly people getting bullied it’s a silent crime. So silent that it could be happening under your own nose.
Why? All for greed, for money. People who are heartless crooks do this silently. Some elderly people get so abused and frightened that they will do anything to make peace, including signing their homes over.
I wouldn’t have believed it myself but it happened in my own family. No one knew my mother in-law was getting abused by her daughter in-law when they were all living in my mother in-law’s house. Every time her son went to work the abuse would start.
A few years before it started my mother in-law had handed her house over as they kept telling her they would pay all the bills and look after her. Wrong. Once the deeds were in her son’s name the abuse started. The heartache hit my mother-in-law and she became so scared she would lock herself in her bedroom and wouldn’t even eat – afraid of getting yelled at if she were to make a mess in the kitchen.
She was so afraid she would put food in her bedroom. She finally confided in her other daughter-in-law and began to see counsellors and therapists because she was that depressed she wanted to end her life.
Her other sons became involved and helped her but she could not return to her own house as they had kicked her out and boxed all her belongings. The poor woman had nothing, having lost the house she and her late husband had bought together. What has the world come to?
If you suspect even for a moment that someone you love dearly is getting abused ask them, or tell them to give you a sign if they are too afraid. If only we had known earlier in our family, we could have stopped all of this abuse.
Name withheld, Hamilton Valley
Our selective memory
Ever since the Abbott Government boosted funding for commemorative events and military history education we have witnessed an unpleasant and dangerous rise in nationalism.
The latest manifestation of this is our Prime Minister dashing off to Israel to commemorate a battle that has no real relevance or significance to Australia. How much longer will we wallow in the recollection of past battles where not only the participants have died, but so have many of their children and it is now up to grandchildren to carry on the remembrance.
Surely there’s a point where we can confine these battles to ancient history. If this trend continues we’ll be digging up details about the battle of Hastings and having solemn ceremonies to remember those who gave their lives so that we could have a French words in our language.
I shudder to think that in 100 years people will be going on pilgrimages to battles fought in Afghanistan. Meanwhile we seem all to quick to forget some massacres of Indigenous people that are still within living memory, and which had a much more direct impact on us than anything that happened overseas 100 years ago. If we must have memorials to past battles then let’s focus on the ones that we started and that still haunt people who are still alive.