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1 LGBT Aging What You Need to Know to Advance Emotional Wellbeing for Lesbian, 1 LGBT Aging What You Need to Know to Advance Emotional Wellbeing for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Older Adults & Caregivers MASSHOUSING Conference April 10, 2013 Lisa Krinsky, LICSW © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

2 History of the LGBT Aging Project • Elder Services: LGBT Issues not on 2 History of the LGBT Aging Project • Elder Services: LGBT Issues not on their radar screen • LGBT Community: Elder Issues not on their radar screen. • Result: LGBT Older Adults are overlooked © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

3 Our Mission To ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender older adults and 3 Our Mission To ensure that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender older adults and caregivers have equal access to the lifeprolonging benefits, protections, services and institutions that their heterosexual neighbors take for granted so that they can grow older with the dignity and respect they deserve. © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

4 Equal not Separate Our goal is not to develop a separate service network 4 Equal not Separate Our goal is not to develop a separate service network for LGBT older adults but to be catalysts of change to make the existing system inclusive of all older adults and caregivers. © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

5 Terminology ØLesbian: Women attracted to women ØGay: Men attracted to men; also an 5 Terminology ØLesbian: Women attracted to women ØGay: Men attracted to men; also an umbrella term to describe both gay men and women ØBisexual: Individuals who are attracted to both men and women ØTransgender: Individuals whose gender identity or gender expression is not congruent with their biological sex © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

6 How Many Older LGBTs? 2010: estimated 1 -3 million 2030: estimated 3 -6 6 How Many Older LGBTs? 2010: estimated 1 -3 million 2030: estimated 3 -6 million 2000 Census: 600, 000 self identified Ø 1 out of 4 same sex couples has a partner over 55 Ø 1 out of 10 has a partner over 65 Outing Age 2001 Ø 2010 Census: 650, 000 self identified © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

7 What’s So Different? Elder Issues • • Healthcare Housing Medication Costs Social Network: 7 What’s So Different? Elder Issues • • Healthcare Housing Medication Costs Social Network: Family, Friends • Income • Retirement / Work • Social / Recreational Activities LGBT Elder Issues • • Healthcare Housing Medication Costs Social Network: Family, Friends • Income • Retirement / Work • Social / Recreational Activities © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

8 Comparison: LGBT vs. General Population © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector 8 Comparison: LGBT vs. General Population © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

9 LGBT Older Adults: Key Aging and Health Findings 2011 2500 LGBTs 50 -95 9 LGBT Older Adults: Key Aging and Health Findings 2011 2500 LGBTs 50 -95 year old in eleven communities across the country • • • Nearly 50% have a disability; nearly 33% report depression Most (91%) engage in wellness activities Nearly 90% feel good about belonging to their communities Almost 2/3 have been victimized 3 or more times 13% have been denied healthcare or received inferior care 21% do not disclose their sexual orientation or gender identity to their physician • 1/3 do not have a will or durable power of attorney for healthcare • 25% have children; 15% have grandchildren • 44% are employed The Aging and Health Report: Disparities and Resilience in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Older Adults, 2011 © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

10 Anna Born: Mc. Carthy Trials (1954 ) Stonewall (1969) APA/DSM (1973) Elaine Nobel 10 Anna Born: Mc. Carthy Trials (1954 ) Stonewall (1969) APA/DSM (1973) Elaine Nobel Elected (1975 ) Reagan Mentions AIDS (1987) “Ellen” Comes Out on TV (1997) Gay Marriage is Legal in MA (2004) Don’t Ask Don’t Tell Repealed (2011) 1920 34 49 53 55 67 77 84 91 Sarah 1950 4 19 23 25 37 47 54 61 © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

11 Challenges: Distrust of Mainstream Institutions A history of discrimination leaves many LGBT older 11 Challenges: Distrust of Mainstream Institutions A history of discrimination leaves many LGBT older adults with a general distrust of mainstream institutions that many heterosexuals assume are in place to help them. Housing: Eviction Religious: Excommunicated or excluded Medical: Psychiatric Disorder / illness Law Enforcement: Police Brutality Military: Dishonorable Discharge Social Services: Denied Family: Estrangement or disowned © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

12 Consequences of Distrust in Mainstream Institutions • • Greatest coping strategy: Becoming Invisible 12 Consequences of Distrust in Mainstream Institutions • • Greatest coping strategy: Becoming Invisible Strong self-reliance Limited circle of support “Home” is important safe-haven © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

13 Mental Health • Pathology of Identity: You are Sick and Need a Cure 13 Mental Health • Pathology of Identity: You are Sick and Need a Cure • 1973 DSM Revision: Homosexuality no longer a Mental Disorder. Change in Policy; Change in Practice? • Gender Identity Disorder: DSM Clinicians as gatekeepers to hormone/reassignment treatment • 2013 DSM Revision: GID no longer a Mental Disorder. • Gender Dysphoria: emotional distress from "a marked incongruence between one's experienced/expressed gender and assigned gender. " © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

14 Mental Health • Higher Incidence of Mental Health Issues for LGBTs across the 14 Mental Health • Higher Incidence of Mental Health Issues for LGBTs across the lifespan ▫ Suicide Attempts ▫ Anxiety ▫ Depression ▫ Substance Abuse Balsam, K. F. Et al (2005) in Outing Age 2010 • Differences in mental health outcomes disappeared when controlling for poor social support and coping skills Safren & Heimberg (1999) in Outing Age 2010 © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

15 HIV/AIDS and Aging HIV over 50 • 15% of new diagnoses - fastest 15 HIV/AIDS and Aging HIV over 50 • 15% of new diagnoses - fastest growing segment of adult population Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, 2005 • By 2015: 50% of all HIV cases will be those 50+ US Senate Special Committee on Aging, 2005 • Development of caregiving systems and networks – model for aging/disability © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

16 Challenges: Financial and Legal • Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) of 1996 defines 16 Challenges: Financial and Legal • Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) of 1996 defines marriage as one man and one woman –a definition used in all federal programs • Economic Security: Gay and lesbian couples, after a lifetime of work and forced contribution, do not get Social Security spousal or survivor benefits • Health Care Decision Making: Definition of Family (blood or “legal” marriage) © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

17 Mass Health Equality Law “…no person who is recognized as a spouse under 17 Mass Health Equality Law “…no person who is recognized as a spouse under the laws of the commonwealth shall be denied benefits that are otherwise available under this chapter due to… federal non recognition of spouses of the same sex. ” Signed into law, July 31, 2008 © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

18 LGBT Baby Boomers as Caregivers ØSame proportion of men & women provide care 18 LGBT Baby Boomers as Caregivers ØSame proportion of men & women provide care (unlike heterosexual population) Ø 75% expect to be caregivers l Spouse or partner l Parent l Families of choice (Out and Aging: The Met Life Study Lesbian and Gay Boomers, 2006) ØMuch LGBT caregiving is horizontal not vertical © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

19 LGBT Baby Boomers as Caregivers General Population LGBT Population women 90% birth/marriage 10% 19 LGBT Baby Boomers as Caregivers General Population LGBT Population women 90% birth/marriage 10% non relative men/women 35% partner/spouse 16% parent 9% other relative 32% friend 7% non relative/neighbor The Aging and Health Report: Disparities and Resilience in Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Older Adults, 2011 LGBT Caregiver Support Group: Safe space for unique experience © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

20 Challenges: Bereavement and Loss “Gay widowhood is a completely unique societal situation marked 20 Challenges: Bereavement and Loss “Gay widowhood is a completely unique societal situation marked by disenfranchised grief and an utter lack of support systems. ” Shernoff, Gay Widowhood: Life After the Death of a Partner, 1998 LGBT Bereavement Group • Statewide; 6 -8 weeks; general loss or partner loss • Current and Previous Losses; Broader range of losses • Suicide mentioned in every group © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

21 Individual Practice ØChallenge Heterosexist assumptions ØNormalize inclusion ØConsider gender-neutral language and labels Ø 21 Individual Practice ØChallenge Heterosexist assumptions ØNormalize inclusion ØConsider gender-neutral language and labels Ø (spouse or partner vs husband or wife) ØExpand definition of family and friends ØPrepare for possible backlash © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

22 Individual Practice Language of the times: ØHomosexual vs. Gay/Lesbian vs. Queer ØFriend, lover, 22 Individual Practice Language of the times: ØHomosexual vs. Gay/Lesbian vs. Queer ØFriend, lover, partner, husband/wife ØEuphemisms -- friend, roommate, cousin ØOpen ended questions – who else lives in your home? Who do you consider your family? ØAffirming environment w/o naming © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

23 Organizational Change: ØCreate inclusive and supportive service delivery systems. ØEnhance professional capacity and 23 Organizational Change: ØCreate inclusive and supportive service delivery systems. ØEnhance professional capacity and cultural competency ØStrengthen the collaboration between mainstream providers and the networks that serve the LGBT population. © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

24 Open Door Task Force ØODTF: Institution/Organization Sustainable Impact ØODTF: Policy and Practice Comprehensive 24 Open Door Task Force ØODTF: Institution/Organization Sustainable Impact ØODTF: Policy and Practice Comprehensive Skills ØODTF: Conveying your Message Ø Community Connections © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

25 LGBT Symbols The Human Rights Campaign logo is one of the most recognizable 25 LGBT Symbols The Human Rights Campaign logo is one of the most recognizable symbols of the LGBT community. It has become synonymous with the fight for equal rights for LGBT Americans. The Pink Triangle was one of the Nazi concentration camp badges intended as a badge of shame; the pink triangle has been reclaimed as an international symbol of gay pride and the gay rights movement. The Rainbow Flag was popularized as a symbol of LGBT pride and diversity by San Francisco artist Gilbert Baker in 1978. The different colors symbolize diversity in the LGBT community. © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

26 Final Thoughts LGBT Baby Boomers: Activist Generation ØLGBT - Visibility and Acceptance ØAging 26 Final Thoughts LGBT Baby Boomers: Activist Generation ØLGBT - Visibility and Acceptance ØAging – Redefining How We Grow Old © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England

27 For More Information: Lisa Krinsky, LICSW Director, LGBT Aging Project lkrinsky@lgbtagingproject. org (617) 27 For More Information: Lisa Krinsky, LICSW Director, LGBT Aging Project [email protected] org (617) 477. 6607 www. lgbtagingproject. org © 2011 LGBT Aging Project / Third Sector New England