Financial woes among the excuses made by offspring
Abandoning aged parents in hospitals had become an increasing trend over the past few years. -The Star/ANN
PETALING JAYA, MALAYSIA: Financial difficulties, lack of filial piety and responsibility and the need to create a distance are among excuses used by children to abandon their parents, said Ti-Ratana Welfare Society vice-president T.H. Tan.
He said abandoning their older parents in hospitals had become an increasing trend over the past few years as many felt it was not their responsibility to care for their aged parents.
"They feel that their parents are a burden, especially parents who are bedridden or with an illness," he said.
Starprobe highlighted on Sunday that hundreds of old people had been left abandoned by their children or their next-of-kin in government hospitals nationwide and the number kept growing.
Tan said there were cases of children refusing to pick their parents from the hospital saying that they could not afford to do so and asked the authorities to look after their parents.
"It is not cheap to send one's parent to a home. Even for some charity homes, it could cost from RM600 (S$245) to RM1,000 per month," he said, adding that there were enough old folks home to cater to the demand.
He explained that it was not easy to run old folks and nursing homes as it was hard to find qualified caretakers.
Ti-Ratana Welfare has two old folk homes in Desa Petaling and they are already running at maximum capacity of 85 occupants.
Veteran teacher and La Salle Brother Datuk Michael Jacques, 93, said senior citizens too would want to be independent and do not want to be abandoned.
"Children should not make their parents feel unwanted. They must show love and respect to their parents. They have sacrified a lot for you when they brought you up," said Jacques, a former Bro Director of the St Xavier's Institution in Penang.
Jacques said back in the old taukeh days, the head of the family would build a big house where different generations of the family would live together under one roof.
"It is unfortunate that there is a modern tendency where children now want to lead their own lives and do not want to be encumbered," he said.
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