Sunday, June 6, 2010

"SENIORITIS". . . .part 2 / 3

Justin: In the last posting to you there was a lot about where I come from and how the early years of my profession shaped me.
Now a word about the other half as we approach our 49th year since first meeting. As you can imagine those days ,1978-1996, were very depressing. If it were not for George I might not have been able to remain sane. He got me out of the basement,literally,cheered me up and helped sanity prevail. His complete patience and good advice sealed our bond . He retired from work and moved to the Connecticut house while I saw him mostly on weekends while practicing in the city . He still maintains that this semi long distance love affair kept us together
This may seem like boring babble to you and may not really be suitable for blog posting so let me know if this is the kind of material you want for your blog otherwise I may just ramble on to no good effect .Perhaps you should say what kind of things interest you.
Ken

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Justin:
If you get a chance see "sex and the city" We did last night. Gayest film out.
Being much older has both its problems and compensations.

As a psych. student you may be aware of the studies by Bell and Weinberg 1971-78 which showed that gay people are no more or less happy than their non-gay peers. Many studies show that older people, gay or not, tend to be more satisfied with life than younger. They want less and grow less acquisitive with time. There is a problem for some of us children of the plague years. Most of our contemporaries ,our closest friends are dead, died at an early age. It is good to observe how people are dying in their mid eighties and nineties once again, not in the twenties and thirties as only 15 years ago.

We have a handful of friends in their forties who live in California. Little family left. parents gone, two lesbian cousins not nearby,one sister in law / sister all geographically distant. In other words no close by family natural or extended. While there are social groups of gay men to which we belong it is not the same as family and old friends. As long as we remain very healthy and mentally alert we find great pleasure in reading and education. Taking college level courses on DVD in subjects as diverse as music,history,astronomy,mathematics,biology advanced physics etc. It seems important to challenge the brain.

With a 60 foot pool outside our door and nearby gyms exercise is not a problem.
So loneliness and isolation is a potential problem for our generation but fortunately not for us yet.
Of course since we are together 24/7 We worry about one going first.
We had straight friend of 45 years who lost his wife and went into a clinical depression requiring months of hospitalization. This despite a large and close family. So perhaps this is something you cannot protect yourself against.

Well enough rambling for now.
Ken

7 comments:

Gary Kelly said...

You run a pretty good blog, Mr O... even if it does attract undesirables like me. Hehe.

JustinO'Shea said...

THANK YOU, Mr. K. . .;-)
My blog is akin to diversity: there is room for everyone. . . lol
Guess I gotta "practice what I preach". jo's

Stew said...

The topic of the emergence of AIDS in the late 70's and early 80's strongly effected myself and my husband. I suppose you could consider my best friend a casualty of it as well. Not that any of us have it or have died from it. More that it really effected the fact that we were teens coming of age in that era and it made the decision to follow ones own desires all that harder when at the time, it was known as a gay disease. As some may remember, I lost my best friend to suicide at 18. And both my husband and I chose not to come out nor even have sex at all during what is comonly known as the peak years for males. It was a fearfull time. You just didn't know what was going on.
In my opinion, the 60's and 70's really got the gay issues out there and we were making a lot of headway. Then the 80's came and we hit a wall. And we're not talking Stonewall either.
The past 10 to 15 years , we've gotten back on track. I hope that life can be a little easier with each and every generation to come out and live as we were intended.

JustinO'Shea said...

STEW. . . your narrative about the effect of the AIDS/HIV shocking reality is very important.

WHY? Because there are guys my age and more younger guys. . . .some have blogs I've run across. . .who openly and casually flirt with infection and the medicated life by actually devoting themselves to having unprotected sex. . .aka 'bareback'. . .and then publish the current scores of loads taken and given without condom or other protection!

What arrogant ignorant hubris! I think this is an issue you older guys who lived thru that early era could/can address with conviction. Those of us born in the 1980s really didnt experience that era you write about. We were informed, instructed. . . but for most of us it is theoretical. . .somehow we need to be instructed so as to prevent another outbreak!

THANKS
justin

ken said...

The psychology of the "Bug Chasers" would make for an interesting study.
They clearly are a type of AIDS denier.We had and still have a whole bunch of people who believe that HIV doesn't cause AIDS despite overwhelming scientific evidence to the contrary.
It is true that medication can greatly prolong life but it is expensive,can deform your body and even hasten your demise from other causes.Why would anyone want to take that risk?
During the early days of the epidemic there were fools who insisted yet more cocaine was the cure. Go figure.
Ken

Gary Kelly said...

So that's what bareback means. I'd seen it mentioned but had no idea what it meant.

Stew said...

"In the beginning" there was no drugs. HIV/AIDS = DEATH period. At 18, that was a bit too much for me to handle.
I work part-time at a drug store. Now, people are proud to buy condoms. It means that they are getting some. Then, it was embarassing. It meant something more dirty. Like, "I know he has dieases and I'm protecting myself" dirty.
Different world.