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photo Just to Have a Peaceful Life
By Jim Vanden Bosch

Pat was married to her abusive husband for forty-five years. Not only did he beat and threaten to kill her, but he also routinely abused their five children. Though Pat left her husband three times when the children were small she returned each time because, she said, of financial need. At first she kept hoping that he would mellow as he got older. Then she thought she would leave when the children were grown. With help from a shelter for battered women, she finally left him again, twice, at the age of 61, only to return, this time because of health problems.

Pat died at age sixty-three without ever achieving the peaceful life she had longed for. This extract of a case originally profiled in Elder Abuse: Five Case Studies is a frightening demonstration of the patterns of dependency and denial that fuel the cycle of abuse.

10 minutes
© 1990
Purchase $119 DVD
Order No. QA-336

Related Films
When Help Was There: This powerful video examines the crisis of elder abuse through four ethnically diverse cases of physical, emotional, and financial abuse.

Elder Abuse: Illuminates both the fear and ambivalence experienced by elderly people who are being abused by family members, and their struggles to find help.

I'd Rather Be Home: Follows the case of an elderly man who has been repeatedly abused by his son, over a period of seven years. (A continuation of a case from the film, Elder Abuse: Five Case Studies.)

A Safer Place: Profiles two elderly adults who were helped by social services agencies to recognize the abusive situations they were living in and seek assistance. A formerly abusive daughter is also interviewed.

Breaking the Cycle of Domestic Violence: This program will help nurses, physicians, social workers and other healthcare workers to detect domestic violence and intervene to "break the cycle."


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