It is very important to remember that people in a position of dependency can face more than just physical abuse issues. They may also suffer from verbal abuse, which can have a drastic impact on their mental and emotional health. Some experts even go so far as to say it leads to "mental anguish."
In an assisted living facility, an elderly person is entirely dependent on the staff and the caregivers. If these same people target them with verbal abuse, it can lead to depression, stress and related issues. These problems can and do take a physical toll on someone, even though the abuse itself is not physical.
One thing to remember about verbal abuse is that it often involves lies. These lies may be told to the elderly person or told about them. The goal is to make them feel vulnerable and attacked, even if there is no truth to what is being said. Examples of lies could include:
- Telling the person that no one cares about them.
- Telling them they have no value or no worth.
- Telling them that they're not going to get proper care, perhaps as a means of manipulation.
Why does this happen? In some cases, workers like the position of power and use verbal abuse to make it stronger. They may also deal with a lot of stress in their own lives, and they lash out at those who are vulnerable. In other cases, workers attack and abuse residents that they do not get along with, since they have to see each other so often.
If your loved one suffers from any type of abuse, make sure you know all of the legal steps you can take.