Gay History

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Yesterday, I talked about interactions between baby boomer / Gen X and millennial LGBTQers and the potential benefits for each age group from such contact. Today, I’ll focus on “elder gays” and why it’s in our interest to make sure we have younger LGBTQers in our lives. . When we reach 65 or so, we typically retire from careers we’ve been pursuing for decades. When that happens, we lose part of our identities. No longer can we introduce or think of ourselves as bankers, lawyers, admen, etc.. . The change can be profound. All too often, we haven’t thought about what we’ll do, who we’ll be, or how we’ll spend our time after we stop working for a living. Having your schedule available to do whatever you like sounds idyllic until you have entire days and weeks to fill with activity and no guidelines for doing so.. . By then, our parents have often passed away or entered assisted living facilities, so family doesn’t fill up as much of our lives as it once did. And, it becomes harder to make close new friends as we age, because people become settled in existing relationships and aren’t always open to new ones. If we move to a retirement destination, making new friends there can be a challenge.. . I think many LGBTQers my age sell themselves short, undervalue themselves, and lose the sense of purpose that motivated them in their earlier lives.. . What they don’t realize is the experience, wisdom, and insights they’ve gained navigating life are of tremendous value to younger LGBTQers. By sharing those resources, they can regain a sense of relevance that can anchor their later years.. . brings together members of younger and older generations around first person stories and images of LGBTQ community history. We hope to also facilitate an exchange, where millennials might get access to advice and connections that will help them navigate their careers and life, while baby boomers will add new meaning and purpose to their lives by helping those looking to follow in their footsteps.. . Today’s photo is of Alan Mundt on South Hampton’s Fowler Beach in the summer of 1986. Alan tragically passed away from AIDS 5 years or so later.. . #35mm #retirement

A post shared by Mike Balaban (@bammer47) on

I love reading his story on Instagram about him and his friends living a fabulous gay life in the 80’s before and during the AIDs Crisis.

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