Elder abuse happens when someone limits or controls an older person’s rights and freedoms. The person often becomes afraid and thinks that they can no longer make their own choices.
Abusers are often people who the person trusts. Abuse can be physical, sexual, emotional, or financial. It can also be abuse if a person is neglected. Neglect happens when someone agrees to provide care to an older adult but does not look after their basic needs.
All abuse is wrong and is not the fault of the person who’s abused. But not all abuse is a crime. For example, if a caregiver tells someone they’re worthless, that’s abuse, not a crime. If a caregiver hits an older adult, that’s a crime.