While elder physical abuse is typically easy to spot, as you notice bruises and scratches on your elderly loved one’s body, emotional abuse, or psychological abuse, can be more difficult to detect. In California, any type of elder abuse, including emotional or psychological abuse, is illegal and punishable under the law. If you suspect a loved one has been the victim of emotional or psychological elder abuse, contact the attorneys at Willoughby Brod today to help your loved ones seek justice and obtain the compensation they deserve.
What is Emotional Elder Abuse?
Emotional, or psychological elder abuse is similar to domestic abuse that an individual may experience in a bad relationship with their significant other or even with their parent or sibling. It often takes place in nursing homes by nursing home staff and caretakers, but it can also take place in the elderly individual’s home by his or her own family members. A person who is found to have committed elder abuse can be charged with a felony, which can result in two to four years of state prison time, or a misdemeanor, which can result in up to one year in county jail and thousands of dollars in fines, depending on the person’s background and history.
Types of Emotional Elder Abuse in California
Emotional elder abuse can take many different forms. Below is a list of some of the most common ways elderly individuals are emotionally abused by those around them:
- They are blamed for something they did not do or that was not their fault
- They are humiliated, whether in public or in private
- They are ridiculed, whether in public or in private
- They are talked to in a condescending or demeaning manner
- They are neglected or ignored by their caretaker
- They are threatened, intimidated, or terrorized
- They are purposefully isolated from their family, friends, and other social settings
How to Spot Emotional Elder Abuse in a Loved One
One result of emotional abuse is that the victim may be afraid to speak about it. Thus, you will not always be able to detect emotional abuse in an elderly loved one simply by asking them if they were abused. Thus, you will need to pay close attention to body language and subtle signs your loved ones give off that may indicate some form of emotional or psychological abuse. Below are some of the signs to look out for:
- They avoid eye contact when they speak to you
- They have lower self confidence than usual
- They seem depressed or withdrawn, or act more shy than usual
- They suddenly start having sharp mood swings
- They are attempting to hurt themselves or others
- They have no interest in engaging in social activities
- They are sleeping less or not eating as much as before
Contact a California Elder Abuse Lawyer Today
If you believe a loved one has been the victim of elder abuse, call the attorneys at Willoughby Brod today to seek justice for your loved one. Our attorneys have helped elderly individuals who have been emotionally abused end the abuse and obtain the full recovery they deserve to try to make up for their pain and hurt. Contact us today at (800) 427-7020 or visit us online to schedule your free consultation.
(image courtesy of Jeremy Wong)