Abuse by Caregivers

Many people experience stress when providing care to people in need. Stress does not give anyone the right to become verbally, emotionally, or physically abusive. Caregivers can be friends, family, neighbors, spouses, or paid providers.

While caregiver stress is never an acceptable excuse for using abusive/controlling behaviors, it can happen in any caregiving situation. Caregivers are responsible for taking measures to reduce and cope with stress that impacts them personally while maintaining a care-receiver’s right to decide about the care/services they receive, and the environment in which they live.

RDVIC advocates can assist victims of caregiver abuse with counseling and support. If you are in a situation where your caregiver is abusing you, call RDVIC immediately at (304) 292-5100. We can help you get the assistance you need to stop the abuse.

Examples of Caregiver Abuse:

Verbal or mental

  • being made fun of or called names
  • blaming a care-receiver for making them feel stressed, overworked, and angry
  • preventing the care-receiver from answering questions or giving information about their needs
  • controlling the care-receiver with threats of physical harm.
  • threatening to prevent the person from doing what they need or want to do

Spiritual

  • keeping the care-receiver from friends, other caregivers, and spiritual leaders of their choice

Physical

  • providing care in a rough, hurtful manner
  • denying a care-receiver food, personal hygiene and medical care (meals, bathing, toileting, dressing, etc., medicine or medical care)
  • denying the use of equipment/devices that may increase independence (glasses, canes, walkers, wheelchairs, etc.)
  • intimidating the care-receiver by throwing things, destroying personal belongings, or damaging property
  • pushing, shoving, slapping, or hitting
  • using weapons to intimidate or injure the care-receiver

Financial

  • Denying a care-receiver opportunity to increase independence or seek employment,
  • Stealing from the care-receiver.

Agencies for Elder and Caregiver Abuse:

Adult Protection Services through the Department of Health and Human Resources

(304) 285-3175

Local resources for senior citizens:

Click to see more resources for Senior citizens.