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Ageing society

Elderly suicides a wake-up call on mental health of lonely seniors

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 05 April, 2018, 2:12pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 05 April, 2018, 2:12pm

I am writing in response to the article on suicides among older citizens (“Elderly Hongkongers are way more likely to kill themselves than others. Why?”, March 10).

Elderly people should enjoy their “golden years”, chatting with old friends and spending time with grandchildren. Why would they choose to end their lives at such a precious time?

The biggest cause is probably the absence of love and care from their families. Hong Kong is a place where everyone is rushing and busy with their jobs. People often forget to express their love or show they care, especially when it comes to their parents.

For the elderly who live alone, their biggest happiness comes from spending time with their children or grandchildren. However, in reality, just a few people visit their parents regularly, let alone take care of their needs.

The elderly have spent their whole lives contributing to society and providing for their children. This trend of elderly suicide is a warning to us to pay attention to the mental health of the elderly in Hong Kong, and what can be done to make them feel wanted in their families and in society.

Yvonne Lee, Kwai Chung