Gay Boomers and nursing attitudes

  1. I read an interestiing article, in the NYT, today. Apparently the first wave of gay boomers have begun to hit our LTC, Assisted Living, home health agencies. And more and more of them are being belittled, receiving less then quality care, being transfered to units that are not appropriate to them because of other residents. I am wondering, has anyone encountered this yet? What has happen? What is your attitidue? What is being done to correct the problems?

    Woody
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  2. 224 Comments

  3. by   ElvishDNP
    My uncle is a 'gay boomer' though not in need of assisted living. I hope that he never encounters anything like that. Regardless of anyone's beliefs about homosexuality, it's wrong to treat people as second-class because you or I or someone else may not agree with it. WRONG.

    I don't treat anybody differently based on race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or anything else. It angers me when I see it happen.
  4. by   gentle
    Quote from woody62
    I read an interestiing article, in the NYT, today. Apparently the first wave of gay boomers have begun to hit our LTC, Assisted Living, home health agencies. And more and more of them are being belittled, receiving less then quality care, being transfered to units that are not appropriate to them because of other residents. I am wondering, has anyone encountered this yet? What has happen? What is your attitidue? What is being done to correct the problems?

    Woody
    That is absolutely despecable :angryfire. If I saw that happen where I worked I would definitely say something and unfortanately I'd probably end up screaming at some idiot.

    If I happened to hold it together, or was just busy and didn't "get it" till after the fact, I would probably evaluate the staff and resign if needed. I don't like that at all, Woody. And, yeah, on occassion, I do just scream, curse, spit etc. And it don't matter where, I've done it at work, at home and at my child's school. Abuse is wrong, it don't matter who it is.
  5. by   woody62
    Quote from Arwen_U
    My uncle is a 'gay boomer' though not in need of assisted living. I hope that he never encounters anything like that. Regardless of anyone's beliefs about homosexuality, it's wrong to treat people as second-class because you or I or someone else may not agree with it. WRONG.

    I don't treat anybody differently based on race, religion, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, or anything else. It angers me when I see it happen.
    I couldn't agree with you more. The story mentioned several health care professionals and nonprofessionals that interacted with several of these individuals. Their behavior is appalling. I am not gay but I have several friends who are and am concerned about them. People who allow their own personal or religious beliefs to interfer with the care of sick people need to examine their own religious values.

    Woody
  6. by   Noryn
    There are no gay boomers in our nursing homes or assisted living. We do not have this phenomenon. Seriously, there are still many stereotypes and prejudice against gay people. I am sure if you have worked in a nursing home for any length of time you have taken care of one, but they often will hide it because of the treatment they have received in life or sometimes because it doesnt matter. Doesnt matter in the sense that a caregiver doesnt need to know. When I go to the doctor I dont make it a point to let everyone know I am straight.

    People deserve respect no matter what their lifestyles are. I would never (and I hope every nurse feels this way) be a part of any discrimination or mistreatment of an individual for any reason.
  7. by   canoehead
    There are no gay people in Iran either.
  8. by   Noryn
    Quote from canoehead
    There are no gay people in Iran either.
    Yeah that was such a joke. See this is off topic (sorry) but that is why I dont care to allow these leaders like that here to talk. It is so easy to call them out on things. Actually there probably are a much lower proportion of gays in Iran because they kill them. Which gets us right back onto topic. As civilized and advanced as we think we have become, we still often tolerate horrible actions against our fellow man (and woman).
  9. by   canoehead
    Noryn- I think having him here to talk was effective because he pretty much dug his own grave. Free speech is a wonderful thing, so long as we have obvious examples (like his) that require people to think about the statements made and make up their own mind.

    Elderly in nursing homes are all vulnerable, and unless there was a very prominent gay friendly group I doubt it would be wise to be up front about one's lifestyle. Elderly are not supposed to have sex lives at all, especially if they require nursing care...ewwww. Perhaps that would be a good niche market to cater to- I bet you would build up quite a long waiting list.
  10. by   cmo421
    Quote from canoehead
    There are no gay people in Iran either.
  11. by   cmo421
    I will be interested too see how this thread plays out. I think in todays age we have to be aware of all the different walks of life and learn tolerance and respect. Last year there was a same sex couple boarding a cruise when one suffered a major head bleed. She was transfered to a local hospital and her life partner was denied access to her and denied a play in decisions even though they had a living will. I am not 100% certain of all details,but I know that they had children who were devestated by this event and the treatment of their MOM's. Hospital nurses and doc were rude and disrespectful to the family. The pt died without her lifepartner with her.
  12. by   woody62
    Quote from Noryn
    There are no gay boomers in our nursing homes or assisted living. We do not have this phenomenon. Seriously, there are still many stereotypes and prejudice against gay people. I am sure if you have worked in a nursing home for any length of time you have taken care of one, but they often will hide it because of the treatment they have received in life or sometimes because it doesnt matter. Doesnt matter in the sense that a caregiver doesnt need to know. When I go to the doctor I dont make it a point to let everyone know I am straight.

    People deserve respect no matter what their lifestyles are. I would never (and I hope every nurse feels this way) be a part of any discrimination or mistreatment of an individual for any reason.
    I don't know if you read the article or not but the fact that you believe there are no gay individuals living in your nursing homes or assisted living facilities just points out one very clear thing, they are more then likely afraid to admit to their sexual orientation.

    When I started nursing school, in 1964, I had two male classmates. One was gay and the other was straight but you couldn't ell by looking at them or listening to them talk or even observing their behavior. Our psychology professor began picking on the male student nurses, in his class, insinuating that they were gay. I was only eighteen and I didn't know what they term gay stood for, so I asked, the one gay student from my school. He told me and he told me he was gay. I was appalled. I was appalled further when this professor began making inappropriate comments about me. So we were both recipients of his inappropriate comments. The only difference, now, is that if I go into a nursing home or an assisted living I don't have to be concerned, my former classmate does.

    I live in a community of approximately 150,000 year round residents, here in SW Florida. I am sure there are gay men and women living here. I am also sure that most are not out about their sexual orientation because of the general community attitude. My own SIL has a negative attitude concerning gays and his was born and raised in the south

    I am sorry but your comment about there being no gays in your working community is at best, very closed eyed.

    Woody
  13. by   czyja
    Quote from Noryn
    There are no gay boomers in our nursing homes or assisted living. We do not have this phenomenon....When I go to the doctor I dont make it a point to let everyone know I am straight.
    Are you sure there are no queer folks living in your facility? I think this is the point of the the NY Times article. When you say "We do not have this phenomenon" I suspect you meant that you do not have out gay residents that are isolated by other residents. But perhaps you have queer residents that are afraid to be out.

    You do not make it point of letting your healthcare provider know that you are straight because it is expected that you are. Gays and lesbians, however, sometimes have different health needs from straight people. And in a LTC environment they most definately have different needs.While I very much agree with you that people should not be discriminated against because of their sexuality I disagree when you suggest that sexual orientation does not matter - it very much does.

    The thing that stuck in my craw about this story is the fact that these people were the first generation to stick their necks out and say "we are gonna live the way we want to and we refuse to be treated like second class citizens. Their efforts - the risks they took, the suffering they endured - made life easier for the queer generations that followed. To allow them to suffer the indigneties outlined in the article is a travesty. The thought of a gay homebound senior having his caregiver lecture to him on the evils of homosexuality makes my blood boil with anger. The thought that a woman's wife of 30+ years is marginalized at the hour of her beloved's death horrifies me.

    Nurses must advocate for the clients. I would also suggest that gay and lesbian nurses have a special obligation to look after their elders and advocate for them when they cannot advocate for themselves. It's the right thing to do.
  14. by   cmo421
    Nurses must advocate for the clients. I would also suggest that gay and lesbian nurses have a special obligation to look after their elders and advocate for them when they cannot advocate for themselves. It's the right thing to do.

    Nurses have an obligation to look after their population of pt's as a whole.I appreciate the basics of ur writing but if gays must look after gays,then catholics must look after catholics,jews to jews, ....we have a responsibility to everyone in our focus of care. I do not think we need to know the sexual orientation of anyone,just treat them fairly as their family,whomever they may be!

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