LGBT Aging and Elder Abuse

  • Tim R. Johnston


This chapter uses the idea of affirmative feedback loops to describe the particular vulnerabilities faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender older adults in aging network services (senior centers, long-term care facilities, nursing homes, assisted-living facilities) and argues for the importance of cultural competency training to combat elder abuse. LGBT older adults in aging network facilities are much more likely to “re-closet” themselves because they fear abuse from doctors, staff, or other older adults. Many describe escaping abuse and bullying as young adults only to find themselves now roommates with the very same anti-LGBT bullies. I describe how cultural competency training uses affirmation as an essential way to treat older adults, especially those experiencing memory loss, with respect as they near the end of their lives. I use my experience as an LGBT aging cultural competency trainer in concert with my discussion of affirmation to explain different ways to create spaces where LGBT older adults feel comfortable and safe being open about their identities.


LGBT aging Geriatrics Senior centers Nursing homes Affirmation Dementia Older adults 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tim R. Johnston
    • 1
  1. 1.SAGENew YorkUSA

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