Gays and aging: Halsted center serves surging population of gay … Chicago Tribune
Posted on June 22, 2009
Filed Under Uncategorized
Windows on the second floor of the Center on Halsted frame an ever-changing portrait of gay life in 2009: Same-sex couples walk hand in hand; cross-dressing young men strut with confidence; rainbow banners herald a neighborhood that embraces gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people of any age.
Behind those windows every Tuesday sit Chicagoans in their 60s, 70s and 80s, many on the tailing arcs of lives spent denying their true sexual identity. Women and men who married opposite-sex partners, had children and only late in life felt comfortable telling the world that they’re lesbian or gay. Men and women who chose solitary lives over the possibility of being outed.
They’re a population celebrating still relatively newfound openness, while also confronting issues that rarely appear on the radar of a youthful gay-rights movement focused on the right to marry.
Some have only recently come out and are trying to find their way in a new community. Some have been out for years but are now in nursing homes where their sexuality has again become a stigma. See Gays and aging: Halsted center serves surging population of gay …
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