. Being elderly should be one of the best parts of life. For those that are religious it means you will be fulfilling your faith soon. For those that don't have faith ... I guess it just sucks for them. Besides the dementia, the diapers, and that famous smell you acquire in your old age getting old shouldn't be that bad. However, according to the National Center on Elderly Abuse, close to 5 million elderly people are abused every year. This number is rising
These abuses stretch from sexual abuse to verbal abuse. I would like to discuss one abuse that isn't talked about enough. One that my generation and the one right before it seem to have a problem with. Stealing from the elderly. I'm not talking about picking some old people off at the ATM. I'm talking about family members taking their money. Stealing their jewelry and telling them they misplaced it. Taking hold of their accounts to pay their bills and keeping the change. Selling their cars and telling them it's because they can't drive anymore. These things are easy to get away with. These are also things you can easily justify in your mind. "I am taking care of them, I deserve this." "Nurses get paid to do this. I don't so I'll just get mine." "Alzheimer's is setting in. They don't even know what's going on." These are all incorrect justifications.
There are plenty of laws that govern physical and mental abuse of the elderly. There are plenty of organizations that maintain these laws. What isn't maintained is everything else. Just because something isn't against the law doesn't make it right. Love the elderly. Spread the idea. In this way the love just might be there when we get old. As always this is just the opinion of one man.
To report elderly abuse or for more information on the topic check out this site. National Center on Elderly Abuse.