Love and Companionship for Baby Boomers

June 24, 2012 by  
Filed under Personal Development

LOVE & COMPANIONSHIP FOR BABY BOOMERS
By Michael Thomas Masters

romantic-heart
Baby Boomers can experience romantic love and companionship. Persons over age forty-five express as much romantic passion as those in their twenties. We can surely fall in love at any age, in our 50s, 60s and even 80s and 90s. This is true for all mature adults, gay, straight, bi-sexual or transgender. In fact, we boomers (and older folks) are becoming the oomph generation!

More and more Baby Boomers are entering the dating world to find companionship and to have someone to communicate with, whether or not romance (and more) follows.

People are living longer and healthier lives as a direct result of looking for love and/or companionship later in life, as well as keeping positive and healthy attitudes. Countless Boomers (and older) are far more active than previous elder generations.

Even in our media and marketing worlds, mature romance comes in a rainbow of diversity, as is evident in countless films, plays, TV programs, TV commercials and printed materials.

For instance, consider the touching, amusing, insightful and offbeat comedy-romance film, HAROLD & MAUDE. At a funeral, a depressed, twenty-year old, Harold (Burt Cort) befriends Maude (the effervescent Ruth Gordon), a seventies plus woman who has a zest for life. Maude and Harold spend much time together, even falling in love, during which time she exposes Harold to the wonders and possibilities of life.
harold-maude
On the small screen, the classic television series THE GOLDEN GIRLS remains a tribute to mature, knowledgeable and lively people, with the series main characters mostly over fifty and full of oomph!

In the past, mature or prime time adults (or seniors, if you prefer) chose more traditional venues, such as cruise ships, bowling clubs, placing personal ads and church gatherings in seeking companionship and/or romantic partners.

With the tagline, “this is what love feels like,” in the film BEGINNERS, a seventy-five years young gay man (Christopher Plummer) meets his younger lover Andy (Goran Visnjc) through social circles, which worked for this happy and loving couple.

Even though these tried and true in-person dating settings are still suitable and work for many single Boomers, on-line Internet dating and surfing has become tremendously popular, saving time, cash and even recurrent travel miles. After all, prime-time age people are far more computer literate than we often give ourselves credit.

Considering the fact that in 2012 half of all people in America over fifty are single, it makes sense that dating sites for those in their golden years are popping up worldwide. Furthermore, in our neighboring country of Canada, where 42% of the entire population is dating online, over the age of forty-five dating has become very acceptable.

Additionally, like plenty of folks under age fifty, many prime-time adults do not feel comfortable hitting the singles bars and other social gathering scenes.

At the time of meeting someone through online dating, you can get to know them better by sharing more information during initial e-mails; than you would with someone, you just start dating in-person. This is because you often spend time sending e-mail (or snail mail) messages back and forth, talking on the telephone and possibly even sharing personal photos or videos.

When you do meet for the first time, taking security precautions are essential, such as meeting in a public place, letting people know where you are going and when you will be back, and taking your cell phone with you. Such precautions are wise to follow even for non-Internet generated first dates.

Remember that human companionship and love can occur when and where we least expect it. In addition to increasing changes of meeting someone, being involved in social activities, gatherings and clubs often places us in environments with other single and interesting Baby Boomers also in search of relationships and/or love.

While further examining media Baby Boomer theme examples, consider the film LAST CHANCE HARRY in which a lonely and single man (Dustin Hoffman) in his 60s, while attending his daughter’s wedding, finds his romantic spirits lifted (and his life changed) by a new female friend (Emma Thompson) in her 50s.
love-birds
Sound a little too romantic? Hey, sometimes life can be that way. Moreover, love happens to folks of all ages!

If you consider on-line dating as an option, checkout these Baby Boomer (and plus) companionship and dating websites, or surf the Internet on your own for other dating sites and social meeting alternatives.

BabyBoomerPeopleMeet.com

Babyboomer-dating.com

SeniorFriendFinder.com

gay.com

chemistry.com (gay and lesbian)

Singleparentsmingle.com

Christiancafe.com

ChristianMingle.com

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Michael Thomas Masters can be reached at filmguy552003@yahoo.com

Los Angeles Crest 100 Mile Endurance Run 2011 Part 2

September 26, 2011 by  
Filed under inspiration

ALARMS SOUNDED OFF AT 3:15 a.m.
me-clock

Alarms sounded off at 3:15 a.m. and we both saved the drama of the snooze button and popped right up out of bed. As with all ultra runners, the big “TO DO” in the hours leading up to a run is insuring the calories consumed the night before get adequately deposited ideally before the run starts (always a hard feat for me). Mark and I got dressed, slopped on all of our lotions and anti-chafing lubes and went down stairs to the wonderful smell of pancakes prepared by Diane (well beyond the call of duty). Leroy left at 3 a.m. for a to Alabama so Diane was up early anyway. Mark and I added some blueberries to the pancakes and enjoyed a combination of coffee and coconut juice to compliment. We finished our breakfast about 3:45 a.m. and insured all of our remaining bags were packed in the vehicles. We planned to drive down to the start line about 4:25 a.m. which left us about 15-20 minutes to sit down and collect our pre race thoughts. It is a lonely period gathering thoughts for the days ahead while trying to keep the mentality at a “one hour at a time” pace. My thoughts kept drifting back to my pacer logistics and the unsettled nature of where they stood at current time. My pacer indicated to me that he would be at Chilao (pacer pick up spot at 52 miles) and would do whatever it took to get there. I put my trust and my confidence in him but also initiated efforts to concoct a plan B, just in case things fell through. 52 miles was a long way off so I elected to divert my attention back to the moment, choosing to grapple with this issue when I came to that intersection.
crowd-forms

We loaded into the cars at 4:30 a.m. and drove the ¾ mile down to the Wrightwood Community Center to check in and await the pre start invocation given by Hal Winton (co-race director). When we arrived, it was a little chilly (46 degrees F) and the sun had not yet initiated its ascendance into the morning sky. It was quiet outside the community center building, but when we walked in, the runners were firmly packed into the building with chatter at full tilt. The common “nervous” smiles were all over the room and the warmth of the room felt good although I could not get too used to it. Mark and I checked in and found a place in the corner of the room to huddle, collect our thoughts and “get in the zone” as we had 15 minutes to the gun. At 4:45 a.m., Hal Winton requested we bow in prayer as he gave a nice invocation. Mark and I made one final trip to the bathroom and at 4:50 a.m. a loud voice requested we file outside and locate under the big start banner just outside the community center building for the official race start. The outside air was slightly chilly but the nerves quelled the temperature nicely. The final few minutes standing under a start banner at a 100 mile run are surreal. Your mind races through a myriad of thoughts, from the weeks and months of training leading up to this moment, to the challenges that await ahead to the hard questions that include “did I train enough”, “did I over train….never an issue for me”, “can I do this”, “what obstacles await me”, WHEN will I suffer and how long, etc.?” Mark and I got separated right before assembling under the start banner and found each other a couple of minutes before the start. We fist bumped and hugged one last time wishing each other a successful journey. I fumbled through the buttons on my watch making sure I had my 30 minute salt pill alarm adequately programmed and that my stop watch was ready at the start of the gun. At this moment, reality hit me…..this party was about to get started. I was about to embark on the biggest 100 mile journey in my life!

THE START – WRIGHTWOOD TO INSPIRATION POINT (0-9.3 MILES)

Hal Winton got on the blow horn and gave the 10 second count down to the start. The gun went off at exactly 5 a.m. followed by sirens from the local fire department that was on hand to send us off. As is the usual dynamics, Mark ran out ahead of me and I elected to gradually get my running legs in check settling comfortably into the back third of the pack. The first ¼ mile was fairly flat and I did elect to trot that section. As we made a left hand turn on to Acorn Street, we began the vertical journey out of town up to the Pacific Crest Trailhead. I immediately began walking when I hit Acorn Street (the first compliance in a master plan to conserve by power walking all of the inclines) and settled into a rhythm trying not to allow runners around me to dictate my pace. It was still quite dark and I did elect not to carry a headlamp the first 30 minutes when lighting was suspect. Rather, I aligned myself with runners carrying headlamps and borrowed some light from them to get me to sunrise. As we walked the concrete laden streets through Wrightwood climbing drastically, we passed numerous homes, some homes were pitch black giving us and our journey no mention while some locals got the coffee pots going early and situated on their decks wishing us well as we passed. One local had a bongo drum set up serenading us as we walked the initial stages of our death march. The town embraces this event and we appreciated the support both the day of the run and the days leading up to the event. I settled in behind a husband and wife team (Larry and Cherie Rich) who were engaged in one of many conversations going on early as we lumbered up the road. I elected to listen and embrace all of the stimuli going on around me trying to establish my own rhythm. Larry and Cherie were running their first 100 mile run (they picked a dozy) and were talking to another runner about their trials and tribulations training for and getting to the start line. They had an unmistakable energy and optimism about them and I believed they would both have good days based on their outlook. Little did I know that Larry and I would have a destined karma that would take us down the course leap frogging each other the entire 100 miles (more on this development later.)
crowd-runs

As we hit the trail head signaling the beginning of dirt and rock, runners fell into a single file configuration and we all began the death march of 3.51 miles in 2,150 feet leading up to the Pacific Crest Trailhead. An undesirable realization crept into my race picture as we ascended up the trailhead traversing repeatedly over numerous switchbacks (I was groggy….I was actually tired….). What happened to the adrenaline and nervous energy that usually negates any feelings of fatigue???? Had I took a wrong turn in my taper? I was only a couple of miles into a 100 mile run and the climb was not feeling as good as it should have at this stage in the game. I elected to embrace the predicament believing it would get better. In hindsight, it was a plague that would follow me the first 75 miles of the run and within reason almost cost me my race. I remained quiet, not electing to engage in too much conversation but did zero in on a runner behind me in the congo line who would later be known as “Mr. Hoorah.” As it turns out, this guy was an eight time AC-100 finisher attempting his ninth finish. He hooted and hollered the whole way up the mountain and one of his famous lines was “RUNNABLE” as he would shout when we came to the few rolling sections on the course. He was a piece of work and we did talk many times sporadically along the course. He was running with a buddy and the goal was for them to finish together, however, his buddy became a cut off victim later in the run.
me-run

Upon arrival at the Pacific Crest Trailhead (PCT), a beautiful rolling section of trail opened up allowing us to gain some time while enjoying a nice reprieve from the relentless climbing. We came upon some ski lifts and open meadows which afforded some great views. Mother nature called (predictably) and I was relegated to my handi-wipe protocol which cost me a couple of minutes (no sweat). Some more sharp ascents coupled with some steep descents brought Inspiration Point into the visual lens and I was about to pull into the first of 19 aid stations. REALIZATION #2 horrifically became a reality that was nothing but unexplainable….I ALREADY HAD BLISTERS AND DEVELOPING HOT SPOTS ON THE HEELS OF BOTH FEET!!!!!! Dog gonnit!!!!!! This was not supposed to happen let alone by the first aid station.
blister-me

I knew I had to make some foot repairs early to avoid the unthinkable. I also elected to carry a 3 liter hydro pack on this run instead of bottles as my hydration needs are immense. I had problems with my hydro pack the entire run as my hose hook up and bladder were not cooperating causing leaking and water loss which cost me fluids and ultimately I ran out of water twice while on the course (more on that later). To add to the already more than desired weight, I carried my I-Phone on the run as I made the decision to commit to video while on the course. I took out my I-Phone as I came into Inspiration Point and videoed my entrance. There to greet me was Carrie as Al had driven ahead to crew Mark at Vincent Gap. No person I know exudes more energy and optimism than Carrie. So great to see her! As I came in she whooped and hollered and had all of my needs ready to go. I sat down, took off both , cut some cover roll and some mole skin and re-patched my heel blisters. Luckily, they were accelerated hot spots at that point but no blistering had occurred….YET. I put on a fresh pair of socks, had Carrie refill my hydro-pack and insured I reloaded with more Clif Shots, etc. I was weighed at Inspiration Point and told I was about 5% down on my body fluids. The medical director told me I was in the beginning stages of dehydration. I thanked him but quietly dismissed the observation knowing my hydration was on point. I weighed in the day before in my pants and had an over inflated weight. My skin was also glistening with sweat which is an indicator that my salt to fluid intake was good. I said good bye to Carrie and trudged on down the trail to the next aid station Vincent Gap (mostly downhill). Mark was about 40-45 minutes ahead of me. (to be continued)
crest-sign

Los Angeles Crest 100 Mile Endurance Run 2011 Part 1

September 18, 2011 by  
Filed under inspiration

A Race “That Just Happens”
A Journal by John DeGregory
john-degregory

There is not an easy 100 mile endurance run anywhere on the planet! This was to be my third 100 mile run and to ask the question why would take a short manifesto to answer. When my good friend and ultra running companion Mark Barichievich and I signed up for this run in December of last year, we hardly knew what we were signing up for, although we did know this was not going to be your run of the mill 100. As with any 100, the hardest part are the months and miles leading up to the big finale..staying healthy, balancing the training with other more important life commitments and just hoping to have an opportunity to tow the line to take yourself to the brink in a 30+ hour ordeal that asks you quit all too often while you entertain the notion, hoping your soul can take over your body in an exorcism that will get you to that coveted finish line.
angeles-sign

The Angeles Crest 100 has nearly a 30 year history but it hardly has the press or receives the accolades that other 100 mile runs garner annually. This is the majestic wonderment and beauty of this race. It is administered by people who seek not fortune or fame but who affectionately love nature, adore community and want people to spiritually connect with the outdoors at the highest of levels through the passion of ultra running. It is a race that asks the very question…”Only you know if you should be here…..only you know if you can run 100 miles.” That question is the essence of the vibe and the culture that is Angeles Crest. The course is a point to point journey starting in a little mountain town called Wrightwood (pop. 5,400) located in the eastern San Gabriel Mountains of Southern California at just under 6,000 feet elevation. The course meanders through the spine of the San Gabriel Mountains and eventually ends in Alta Loma at a wonderful little community park called Loma Alta. The run historically ended in Pasadena at the Rose Bowl with a ceremonial lap around the football field until a few years ago.

Mark and I arrived in Wrightwood, CA on Thursday, July 21st at dusk after a long day of travel and having gotten lost. Ironically (and quite randomly) I have relatives that live in Wrightwood approximately three fourths of a mile from the start line, so it made for some convenient and personable accommodations. Diane and Leroy Jenkins were quite the hosts feeding us and making us feel right at home. We could not have had a better pre-race headquarters. Diane took us on a driving tour of Wrightwood the evening we arrived and showed us (among other things) the first mile of the race which goes vertically through town up to the trail head that would eventually take us to the famed Pacific Crest Trail (of which a lot of the run in on). After seeing the first mile of the course, our fears were realized understanding quite literally how vertical this course is. The Angeles Crest 100 has nearly 22,000 feet of climbing and over 26,000 feet of descent. You are either climbing or descending the entire 100 miles with very little flat or rolling surfaces. The recovery and transition processes ended up being extremely difficult on this course with the undulating terrain.
top-angeles
On Friday morning July 22nd (the day before the race), Mark and I awoke about 7:15 a.m. and sauntered down stairs for some breakfast with Diane and Leroy. We had a nice bowl of Oatmeal with some coffee and water and headed down to the Wrightwood Community Center (race headquarters) for the official race check in and medical check which included taking your pre-race weight (I tipped the scales at 198 lbs. not thinking to weigh in per my race day but instead had pants on and a few other items that took me to a higher weight class). My blood pressure was surprisingly 164/79. The numbers don’t lie (I was nervous)! The medical team was not concerned with my stats and in fact did not even query me on any health related or medical history questions. This will come in to play shortly. After our weigh ins, Mark and I proceeded to look over the swag that was for sale and purchased Angeles Crest 100 Mile Endurance Run shirts for our crew and pacers. Al and Carrie Barichievich (Mark’s brother and sister in law) were coming down from South Lake Tahoe to pace Mark and crew for both of us. David Smith was coming down from Napa to pace me. We then proceeded to mingle in the rustic community center building for a short time and then placed our course drop bags outside in the designated locations. I had six drop bags for the course hoping worse case I had more than I needed. It is always difficult when not having run a course before to know exactly what aid stations to select for drop bag placement, however, I had some incredible feedback from Ling Chu who ran and successfully completed Angeles Crest last year and her feedback on the course and details associated with the run were amazing and incredibly accurate per what I would soon experience myself.
ultra-runsign
On a side note, Mark overheard a conversation between Ken Hamada (race director) and a runner from Colorado. The runner indicated to Ken that he had flown out from Colorado a month and a half ago to scout the course and run particular sections to familiarize himself with the terrain. He indicated to Ken that he took a wrong turn on his training run and was concerned that the course was not going to be adequately marked. Ken (being a quiet, unassuming guy) calmly told the gentleman that the course would be marked. The runner dove back into his diatribe of concerns and Ken again reiterated that the course would be marked and said “We have been doing this race for nearly 30 years and it JUST HAPPENS.” In hindsight, this really was the essence of Angeles Crest…not sweating the small details while believing things will somehow come together. I also spoke with Ken briefly and asked him what the historical play out has been on getting a pacer at Chilao Flat (52 miles) as my own pacer logistics were confirmed in theory but uncertain logistically going into race day. Ken informed me that historically pacers have been available for runners needing them at Chilao Flat but of course could not guarantee it. The common scenario is that pacers sometimes get stranded at Chilao Flat waiting for runners that drop at earlier aid stations on the course. Appreciating the odds, I thanked Ken and decided to inform Al just in case my pacer was not able to make it last minute. I figured Al could inquire at Chilao (as needed) about a pacer in the hope that, if needed, I could have an emergency one lined up if mine could not make it.
pct-trail
Once our drop bags were in place, Mark and I decided to get off our feet and drive up to the first aid station on the course called Inspiration Point which is 9.5 miles into the run. It is about a five mile drive from downtown Wrightwood. Inspiration Point has an incredible view due West of the entire Los Angeles Basin and the afternoon we were there, we saw an incredible marine layer mixing with the all to common SoCal smog which together looked like a nuclear concoction hanging in the atmosphere. Made being higher up that much more desirable. Before heading back to Wrightwood we ascertained where the course meandered from Inspiration Point and took stock in Mt. Baden Powell in the distance which represents the highest elevation on the course at 9,400 feet and would be the second major climb in the run. We ran into a local cyclist eating a Clif Mojo Bar and I could not help but I-Phone video him in a short social media plug for Clif Bar, Inc. Always nice to see people fueling with Clif Bar.
cliff-bar
We made our way back to Wrightwood and stopped by Leroy and Diane’s for some lunch prior to returning to the Wrightwood Community Center for the pre-race meeting. The pre-race meeting is one of the significant realities that the run is here and that you will soon be lining up at the start line to put your best foot forward. The pre-race meeting was true to the culture of Angeles Crest, brief in content but compelling in approach. The essence of this run became crystal clear as Mark and I listened to every word being spoken. The medical director took the microphone and informed the runners that medical aid and resources would be available along the course but that it would be at the runner’s discretion to utilize medical materials and attend to their own medical needs. The medical team was assuming no liability for runner safety and would advise cautiously on medical recourse. We were informed that there would be three mandatory weigh ins along the course but that the medical team WOULD NOT PULL A RUNNER for hydration and body weight issues, only advise that they drink more or less pending the predicament. This announcement was met with a rousing applause from the majority of the runners. A uniquely different medical approach than in most runs as we have become versed in the medical teams controlling our fate when it comes to runner medical safety. Ken Hamada again addressed the course marking issue and indicated that last year’s race introduced two new aid station captains that did not coordinate effectively on the course markings between their two aid stations resulting in some runner hell as a number of front runners went off course. He indicated that this year’s race would also have two new aid station captains and although he was confident the course would be adequately marked between their two aid stations, he could not guarantee it and predicted there might be some minor runner hell. Once again, we were reminded that this race “just happens.” After the major announcements, Mark and I elected to skip a non-mandatory course slide show and returned to Leroy and Diane’s to meet Al and Carrie Barichievich (Mark’s brother and sister in law) who graciously volunteered to come down from South Lake Tahoe to crew for Mark and I and pace Mark. In the final analysis, Al and Carrie were the reason Mark and I survived on the Angeles Crest course. They were remarkable beyond what can adequately be described (more later on their legendary contributions).
angel-high
Al and Carrie arrived about 4:15 p.m. on Friday afternoon and we enjoyed some conversation and relaxation on Leroy and Diane’s patio before heading over to the Grizzly Café for dinner where we were meeting another buddy (Dan Burke) running Angeles Crest and his crew including Suzie Lister (a long time friend and fellow ultra runner who was pacing Dan from Chilao to Chantry Flat). We had a great dinner complete with a plethora of laughs as we ventured into the world of Facebook not quite believing some of the photos posted on a couple of ultra runner accounts (I’ll leave it at that). The veggie burger, fries and garden salad went down nicely as I did deviate from my usual pre race pasta fuel. We wrapped up dinner close to 7 p.m. and headed back to Leroy and Diane’s to finalize our pre race strategy and get to bed early as our 3 a.m. wake up call was going to come quickly.

When back at Leroy and Diane’s, Mark and I sat down with Al and Carrie and reviewed the crewing, pacing and general run logistics for the next two days. Since the run is a point to point course and the race organizers do not offer shuttle service or transportation back to the finish line after the race, we had to find a way to get one of our vehicles to the finish line. We were short in personnel (originally had four people scheduled to pace and crew Mark and I) which would have allowed us to drive two vehicles down the course. As we only had Al and Carrie and my pacer (who had not arrived yet as of race eve) Al and Carrie amazingly agreed to drive our vehicle down to the finish line race morning (after we started the run) and would then drive back up the course to start crewing for us at Inspiration Point! A novel feat in and of itself. I will never forget Al saying “IT’S WHAT WE DO.” He indicated him and Carrie were there to insure we finished at all costs. Nothing made me feel better or more confident knowing we had that kind of dedication to our cause. They are both such amazing people! It showed ten-fold over the next 48 hours! After our pre race chat and a couple of chocolate chip cookies, Mark and I headed for bed. We set our alarms for 3:15 a.m. and read for a little while before drifting off to sleep.
end-days

An Inside Job

March 11, 2011 by  
Filed under health, Personal Development

hand-energy
By Cheryl Roby
There are days that lack oomph! Let’s face it, the fast paced techno dense life can be stressful.

My computer and blackberry conveniently provide information and up to date status that were unheard of even 10 years ago AND they provide a constant stream of messages that say READ ME, PAY ATTENTION TO ME, I AM URGENT!!

When I realize that my state of mind has gotten out of balance and I am paying more attention to the imagined urgency than to the gift of instant information and connection, my work with stress management and inquiry help bring me back into balance.
stress-work
As a Reiki Master and student of conscious living I have come to understand that my work first and foremost is to be kind and peaceful in this world. If I am anxious or angry or impatient (substitute any emotions other than peace, love and kindness that resonate with you) I am adding to the energy of war. There is a war going on inside me that affects not only me but everyone I come in contact with and the collective conscious. Our energies are all connected. Our thoughts are powerful beyond what most of us can imagine.

So, before I try to fix what’s out there, I refocus on what is inside; using the tools of inquiry, breath, positive affirmation and others to regain peace.
positive-thumb
Cheryl Roby’s website is www.rockyourchakras.com and www.robychart.com

LGBT Baby Boomers

November 24, 2010 by  
Filed under Personal Development

boomer-sign
By Michael Thomas Masters

At 80 million strong, and with plenty of oomph, the baby boomers generation is the largest in American history.

The forthcoming holidays and New Year are customary times for all people, especially the vast population of baby boomers, to contemplate on our futures. All baby boomers have experienced many winter holiday moons past.

Nevertheless, a particular segment of baby boomers with valid concerns and insights that are often over-looked (or completely ignored) in regards to aging, in both print and visual media, are the millions of American gay baby boomers who are 50 plus. In addition to our being largely over-looked in regards to our aging needs and concerns, we repeatedly also experience increased bias and discrimination, which is of great concern.

One of the few films that deal with the lives of elder gays, “An Empty Bed” (1989), reflects on the grace, struggle and honesty of aging.

In these obstinate and challenging economic times, no baby boomers needs, nor deserves, additional unfair worry and stress reaped upon us, due to our sexual orientation, especially at this festive time of the year. After all, trimming holiday trees, creating fabulous dinners, sharing gatherings with loved-ones, gift giving and spreading good cheer applies to everyone. Above all, I love selecting a gorgeous pine tree to decorate and addressing and mailing holiday cards.

Good, affordable and just healthcare and retirement should be available to all of us, particularly as we grow older. However, it is not.

In fact, California is the only state with a law saying the gay elderly have special needs, like other members of minority groups. A new law encourages training for employees and contractors who work with the elderly and permits state financing of projects like gay senior centers.
lgbt-boom
“Out and Aging: The MetLife Study of Lesbian and Gay Baby Boomers,” (which can be found at: www.maturemarketinstitute.com under “What’s New”) is the first national survey of its kind that found more than a quarter of gay American polled (twenty-seven per cent) feared discrimination as we age. Less than half-expressed confidence that health care professionals will treat them with “dignity and respect.”

Fears of insensitive and discriminatory treatment are particularly strong among lesbians.

It has been reported that lesbians are more troubled than gay men about their financial stability as they age and report being less financially set for retirement. On the other hand, gay men are more likely (than gay women) to be concerned with being alone (43% versus 36%).
health-apple
On a positive side for LGBT baby boomers (as well as for all adult gays) in April 2010, President Obama issued an historic memorandum to help ensure equal access to hospital visits and decision-making rights for same-sex couples. It is a significant step forward for the health-care rights of gay couples.

If you are a part of a same-sex couple or marriage, and want to make the most of these protections, you will need visitation forms to make certain your family and friends can visit you, as well as a health care proxy and living will. In doing so, this will ensure that those who know you the best can make medical decisions on your behalf in an emergency.

Furthermore, President Obama ordered hospitals participating in Medicare or Medicaid to ensure that all patients’ advance directives, which include appointing someone to make healthcare decisions if necessary, are respected.

Discover more about this important equal rights process, and to download sample forms, go to, http://www.hrc.org/issues/protect-your-visitation-and-decision-making- rights.htm

Another great resource for Gay Baby Boomers is the Lesbian and Gay Aging Issues Network (LGAIN), which is a constituent group of the American Society on Aging. The organization raises awareness about the concerns of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) elders and about the unique barriers they encounter in gaining access to housing, healthcare, long-term care and other needed services.

Let us not give up, or let up, until excellent, fair and affordable healthcare is available for all baby boomers (and all Americans) alike.
lgbt-flag
Happy and healthy holidays with a fulfilling and successful New Year, filled with immense oomph and joy, for everyone!

Michael Thomas Masters can be reached at filmguy552003@yahoo.com

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