Thursday, October 11, 2012


Once again I take up news items which recently have been appearing regularly – Robbing or murder of elderly person/s staying alone, latest being robbing and assaulting of a 79 years old woman in a posh colony of Delhi. She stays alone in ground floor of the building. Her son and married daughter are reported to be staying within NCR. The attack took place at wee hours of morning. She had put up stiff fight as she is quite strong but was beaten up, overpowered and gagged by the robbers. She somehow managed to press the warning alarm bell which brought her caretaker living on uppermost story of the building. She is lucky to have someone as caretaker but how many can speak of that? The question which comes in my mind is why should elderly, even a couple, be staying alone?

Some may not want to leave their familiar environments. My own grandparents, both paternal and maternal, continued living at their own houses as they were not keen to keep moving to different cities with their children who had transferable jobs, though within the state. They were frequently visited at regular intervals by children and grandchildren to ensure not only their safety but happiness also. I used to travel inter-city alone from age of 10 years or so to be with my paternal grandparents frequently. Summer vacations were spent equally with both sets of grandparents. Of course, those days the crime was not so high. But then a time came when their children forced them to shift with them as their health starting causing concern.

As per news items it is seen that lately even those with ailments are reported to be staying alone inspite of their children being well off.  Is it due to desire of having independence or space by their children? Is it not selfishness to neglect the parents at their twilight years, specially when they are non-interfering and are more of a support, particularly in taking care of grandchildren when both parents are working? Don’t the elderly deserve happiness with their grandchildren in the fag end of their life? Are we becoming so insensitive to relations?

I think that we need to do introspection on this issue.


Shilpa Garg said...

It's really shocking and sad to see so many crimes against the elderly. As to why they are staying alone and not with their children and grandchildren... I am sure there is always a story/reason behind it. But yes, staying alone at this age is certainly not right!! :|

Rià said...

That's why children living abroad are constantly worried for their parents wel's really sad that the elderly are being targeted. I feel it's best for them to stay with the children.

subtlescribbler said...

hope u r doing good..Sorry to be back after such a long time!

Well yes the value of relations seems to be lost now. Elders are seen nothing more than an obligation and interfrnce in a busy schedule.
But I think that its something which should be instilled from early ages by the parents and family. As little kids we have always seen our elders respecting and invoving the grandparents in all matters and now mature we do the same. I spent hours talking to my grandmom when she comes to delhi and its nothing less than a blessing coz her wisdom and love is unmatchable. unlucky are those who deprive themselves of such gems in life.


Momina said...

I think as we age, we become too self-sufficient, and then we often forget the importance of elders in our lives, worldly things start mattering a lot more.

Purba said...

I know, we will be staying alone in our twilight years. I am mentally prepared for it.

Lifestyles are changing. Kids are emigrating for better lifestyles. And what's more, parents are encouraging it.

After all, as parents we always wish the best for our kids.

Anupama K. Mazumder said...

A very deep issue... and often, no amount of complex discussions help!

Old parents don't want to shift - children keep visiting, but what happens in the interface?

Sach! said...

I so second your thoughts uncle Jack.
I am so far from my parents, I wish they woudl move with me but then they say they don't want to retire. I, on the other hand, am doing great in life and do not want to give up on that. And the thing is even when I say no to this lifestyle, my parents don't let me.

All I can pray is for health for parents.

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Jack said...


It is for youngsters to see that they are exposed to dangers, not only of bad elements but health also.
Take care


At times the elderly may have to be overruled for staying independently. Take care

S S :

Nice to see you. Old values are being lost these days. Sure it is for elders to inculcate that in children. Take care


Welcome to my space. Hope to see you often now. You have summed it up so aptly. Take care

Jack said...


True, parents always want the best for children. So should the children also not want the best for them at their old age? Take care


Welcome to my space. Hope to have your valuable view often. There are so many reasons but it is upto children to see to their safety as well as well health too. Take care


I am so thankful for such a strong support. Old persons can be very adamant at times but for their safety and health children have to overrule them if need be. Take care

T P I :

Nice to see you again. Take care

Always Happy said...

That is the story in most of the houses uncle - Elderly couples living by themselves. It is sad but for better prospects kids have to fly out of the nest.

It is shocking though to hear of the crimes against the elderly.

Jack said...

A H,

I know but where possible should the children not stay with elderly or ask them to shift with them for their happiness and safety in fag end of life?

Take care

Tranquility Speaks said...

Truly deplorable acts! Different people might think differently, but in my opinion, elderly parents should not be left to fend for themselves. Specially when the children are in the same city. The children have no excuse to leave them alone. I feel sorry for parents whose children have left them alone in pursuit of happiness.

Jack said...


It is really a pity that some youngsters feel that their independence is more important than happiness and safety of their parents.

Take care

Bhavana said...

It is a difficult thing, Jack. Yes, elderly should not be left alone and they feel lonely. Kids must give that familial warmth. But seniors should also learn the importance of giving space and freedom to their children and grandchildren. I live with my parents--my dad is 78. They love me being around. But it is hard at times because I have had to give up a lot of freedom and personal lifestyle for that. I have had to do a lot of things in secret which I dont like since I am 40...I want to live freely. So there is a price to pay for the love we give.

Jack said...


I agree with you that a time comes when parents or elders must accept that youngsters have grown up to take their own decisions . They should be there to give any support as needed but no more imposing their wishes.

Take care