I think it must have been about 100 years ago that social services were first set up. I am not sure, but I think the first of these was the public school system. Schools took away children’s rights and the rights of families and communities to educate young people.
When we think of “elder services,” we may think of visiting nurses and aides, homemakers, vans for transportation, and the like, which are now paid for by insurance. We may think of retirement communities or nursing homes.
Families may feel immensely relieved, since caregiving is downright exhausting. Interestingly, caregiving is also isolating for the caregiver, which very few realize. Often, all the caregiving duties fall into the hands of one person only. People do not realize just how tiring, isolating, and frustrating this can get.
What happens next? A hundred years ago it would never have come to this. There was such thing, back then, in caring friends, family, and neighbors, some of whom can help out. If many help out, it’s not exhausting at all, because the work is divided and shared between all of them.
What the heck happened?
Somehow, they decided that elders and others need government-run “services.” This is supposedly the greatest thing ever. However, I do not think so. I think the presence of these services has caused people to care for each other less than ever before. Why? Caring is no longer necessary. For decades now, they have not had to care. Friends and family can safely turn their backs on those in need. The “services” will take care of it.
Could the presence of services cause elder neglect? I believe the presence of these services are in fact the cause of widespread lack of caring and disregard toward each other throughout the Westernized world.
What do you think?