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Thematic analysis on older people understanding of elder abuse Directions for theoretical development

Barjose, Nursia M.; Aranas, Mary Ann A.

The aim of this study was to explore older people’s understanding of elderly abuse; the reasons for such act and the impact on their feelings and physical well-being. A total of 18 elderly persons (13 females and 5 males) were purposively selected and have participated in the discussion. There were two mixed groups of both males and females. The first group consisted of 6 females and 3 males. Participants were between the age of 65 and 72. The second group consisted of 7 females and 2 males. The main data source consisted of in-depth interviews through focus group discussions and one-on-one interview with the investigator and informants as co-participants. The study confirms the theoretical statement that perceptions on the abuses experienced by the elderly are basically governed by their respective sociocultural experiences from their younger years. Majority of the participants defined and categorized elderly abuse based on identified experiences and grounded on their cultural background. What is classified as elderly abuse for some may not hold true for others. The belief of the majority is that abuse is composed of any action that diminishes the respect and dignity duly given to an elderly person. Consequently, the study validates one of the assertions of the Elderly Caregiver Attachment Theory that elderly may experience different types and degree of abuse depending on their perceptions on elderly abuse, living condition, level of powerlessness, and dependence.

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