Cross-cultural perspectives on elder abuse as a family dilemma

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Philip O. Sijuwade
Cite this article:  Sijuwade, P. (1995). Cross-cultural perspectives on elder abuse as a family dilemma. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 23(3), 247-252.


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Comparative studies of cases by type of elder abuse disclosed distinct profiles of abuse, neglect, and financial exploitation. Physical and psychological abuse were more closely associated with the problems of perpetrators than the victim. Victim-perpetrator dependency, perpetration psychopathology, and caregiver stress emerge from the comparative studies as major risk factors for elder mistreatment, with substance abuse and social isolation as serious contributing elements. Elder abuse challenges belief in the sanctity of the home and the inherent goodness of man. Also, it raises basic ethical and legal dilemmas regarding the elder’s right to self-determination and society’s desire to intervene. To arrive at a better understanding of this difficult problem, the experience of all countries will be needed.


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