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Stay well and have fun during the quarantine

Stay well and have fun during the quarantine

Need a reset like something funny or cute to take your mind off things for a moment?

Check out some of our picks, and let us know if you’ve got any you’d like to share!

Community Suggestions and staff picks have no affiliations or site vetting, please reach out with any questions.

Art + Pride

Learn about LGBTQ+ Artists Who Have Made an Impact, catch up on some great vibes and nostalgia.

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A Brief History of LGBTQ Art + Symbolism

Here’s a brief history of LGBTQ Art by Revel & Riot, a great blog with lots of humor and T-shirts!

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How to Have Sex in the Coronavirus Pandemic

So, if we are going to have to rethinking what we’re doing, not have folks over, not get out to sexy places and events, and overall may just have a difficult, awful time of it, how’s the sex going to even happen? Is it even a thing in a pandemic?

Yes. It is a thing.

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FREE MUSEUM TOURS!

Stuck at Home? These 12 Famous Museums Offer Virtual Tours You Can Take on Your Couch

British Museum, the Guggenheim, National Gallery of Art, Musée d’Orsay, Rijksmuseum & Van Gough Museum to name a few, all without having to leave your couch!

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Pluto the dog!

A “talking” dog, a wiry 13-year-old Schnauzer, has become a pandemic hero since the canine made her first appearance on Facebook last week. She’s very funny.

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Cats wearing hats, whats the catch?

A suggestion from our beloved Adam, ‘Cats wearing hats made of their own hair! It’s actually a LOT more adorable than it sounds.’

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Cat Videos

There might be a million cat videos online, since that’s pretty much the only reason the internet was created it seems. “This video is one of my favorites though because cats really just don’t care.” – Beatrix

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Housing update 3

Housing update 3

Now that the LGBTQ-Affirming Senior Housing project has received funding commitments from the city, county, and state, the project team is advancing into the next phase of design work for the project and initiating the entitlements process to obtain all necessary land use and building approvals with the city. 

We are currently working to optimize the design of the GenPRIDE senior community center to provide additional floor area and an enhanced connection to Broadway, and we’ve assembled a team of engineers to begin designing the structural, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing elements of the building. The project team is also focusing on making the building green and energy-efficient, including solar panels on the roof. 

The design and entitlements process is expected to progress through late 2020 with an anticipated construction start in early 2021 and completion in 2022. The project is now preparing to submit materials to the city for Early Design Guidance, and we’d like to provide another opportunity for the community to provide comments on the project in advance of the Early Design Guidance submission. 

Community members are encouraged to submit comments by sending an email to 1515Broadway@capitolhillhousing.org

you may also obtain additional information about the project by visiting the project web page at http://openhouse.capitolhillhousing.org/OpenHouse/senior-lgbtq-affirming-affordable-housing-project/ or www.genprideseattle.org/future.

The project team also intends to hold another community update meeting about the project in mid-2020 to solicit additional feedback about the building design and programming. Stay tuned!

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The Lavender Palette – GenPRIDE Field Trip

The Lavender Palette – GenPRIDE Field Trip

We had a great turnout of 39 GenPRIDE elders and friends for our field trip to The Lavender Palette, an art exhibit of Washington state’s gay and lesbian artists active from 1910 through 1970, offered at the Cascadia Art Museum in Edmonds, WA.

The curator of the exhibit, David Martin, gave us a guided tour through the galleries, revealing many personal stories and context about each artist, their lives and work. These personal details about the artists drove home how courageous and innovative they were, and how they managed to survive in a less-welcoming era when discrimination was widespread and same-sex trysts were illegal.

Though the full exhibit closed at the end of January, you can still see selected pieces in a continuing exhibit at Cascadia Art Museum. This subset will be on display until the publication of the exhibit’s companion book, sometime this spring.

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Future

Future

LGBTQ-Affirming Affordable Senior

Housing Comes to Seattle!

GenPRIDE to be the ground floor service provider.

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The mayor announced on Monday, December 9 2019, that the Office of Housing has chosen to fund Washington state’s first ever LGBTQ-Affirming Affordable Senior Housing building, to be located on Capitol Hill. The property, located between Pike and Pine on Broadway in the heart of the historic LGBTQ neighborhood, will break ground in late 2020 or early 2021 with completion slated for early 2023.

The project, which has been a community-collaboration involving nine LGBTQ non-profit organizations, has partnered with developer Capitol Hill Housing to build and operate the new apartments. GenPRIDE, who provides LGBTQ+ senior services and activities, was chosen to be the ground floor service provider. The space will include a community meeting room, a commercial kitchen for meals and events, a health clinic, and offices for GenPRIDE’s outreach to residents and will serve as their hub of operations for expansion into King County.

“This is a remarkable time in Seattle’s LGBTQ history, and we are both excited and humbled to be playing a part in building a stronger senior community for those who have been instrumental in achieving the rights many of us enjoy today,” says GenPRIDE Executive Director, Steven Knipp. “We are looking forward to making this a vibrant center filled with people who want to connect with others and be a part of our incredible community.”

There will be a community celebration and information events held in early 2020 to both commemorate this achievement and to provide a forum for input into his exciting new property.

Look to www.genprideseattle.org for more information.

GenPRIDE, is a Seattle-based non-profit founded in 2015 to serve the needs of the LGBTQ+ aging community. Our collaborative partners in the housing venture are University of Washington Aging with Pride, Ingersoll Gender Center, Gay City, GSBA, Allyship, County Doctor/Carolyn Downs Clinic, POCAAN, Seattle Counseling Services, and Capitol Hill Housing.

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Sexuality in Later Life

Sexuality in Later Life

Many people want and need to be close to others as they grow older. For some, this includes the desire to continue an active, satisfying sex life. With aging, that may mean adapting sexual activity to accommodate physical, health, and other changes.
There are many different ways to have sex and be intimate—alone or with a partner. The expression of your sexuality could include many types of touch or stimulation. Some adults may choose not to engage in sexual activity, and that’s also normal.
Here, we explore some of the common problems older adults may face with sex.

What Are Normal Changes?

Normal aging brings physical changes in both men and women. These changes sometimes affect the ability to have and enjoy sex.

A woman may notice changes in her vagina. As a woman ages, her vagina can shorten and narrow. Her vaginal walls can become thinner and a little stiffer. Most women will have less vaginal lubrication, and it may take more time for the vagina to naturally lubricate itself. These changes could make certain types of sexual activity, such as vaginal penetration, painful or less desirable. If vaginal dryness is an issue, using water-based lubricating jelly or lubricated condoms may be more comfortable. If a woman is using hormone therapy to treat hot flashes or other menopausal symptoms, she may want to have sex more often than she did before hormone therapy.

As men get older, impotence (also called erectile dysfunction, or ED) becomes more common. ED is the loss of ability to have and keep an erection. ED may cause a man to take longer to have an erection. His erection may not be as firm or as large as it used to be. The loss of erection after orgasm may happen more quickly, or it may take longer before another erection is possible. ED is not a problem if it happens every now and then, but if it occurs often, talk with your doctor.

Talk with your partner about these changes and how you are feeling. Your doctor may have suggestions to help make sex easier.

What Causes Sexual Problems?

Some illnesses, disabilities, medicines, and surgeries can affect your ability to have and enjoy sex.

  • Arthritis

    Joint pain due to arthritis can make sexual contact uncomfortable. Exercise, drugs, and possibly joint replacement surgery may help relieve this pain. Rest, warm baths, and changing the position or timing of sexual activity can be helpful.

  • Chronic pain

    Pain can interfere with intimacy between older people. Chronic pain does not have to be part of growing older and can often be treated. But, some pain medicines can interfere with sexual function. Always talk with your doctor if you have side effects from any medication.

  • Dementia

    Some people with dementia show increased interest in sex and physical closeness, but they may not be able to judge what is appropriate sexual behavior. Those with severe dementia may not recognize their spouse or partner, but they still desire sexual contact and may seek it with someone else. It can be confusing and difficult to know how to handle this situation. Here, too, talking with a doctor, nurse, or social worker with training in dementia care may be helpful.

  • Diabetes

    This is one of the illnesses that can cause ED in some men. In most cases, medical treatment can help. Less is known about how diabetes affects sexuality in older women. Women with diabetes are more likely to have vaginal yeast infections, which can cause itching and irritation and make sex uncomfortable or undesirable. Yeast infections can be treated.

  • Heart disease

    Narrowing and hardening of the arteries can change blood vessels so that blood does not flow freely. As a result, men and women may have problems with orgasms. For both men and women, it may take longer to become aroused, and for some men, it may be difficult to have or maintain an erection. People who have had a heart attack, or their partners, may be afraid that having sex will cause another attack. Even though sexual activity is generally safe, always follow your doctor’s advice. If your heart problems get worse and you have chest pain or shortness of breath even while resting, your doctor may want to change your treatment plan.

  • Incontinence

    Loss of bladder control or leaking of urine is more common as people, especially women, grow older. Extra pressure on the belly during sex can cause loss of urine. This can be helped by changing positions or by emptying the bladder before and after sex. The good news is that incontinence can usually be treated.

  • Stroke

    The ability to have sex is sometimes affected by a stroke. A change in positions or medical devices may help people with ongoing weakness or paralysis to have sex. Some people with paralysis from the waist down are still able to experience orgasm and pleasure.

  • Depression

    Lack of interest in activities you used to enjoy, such as intimacy and sexual activity, can be a symptom of depression. It’s sometimes hard to know if you’re depressed. Talk with your doctor. Depression can be treated.

  • Surgery

    Many of us worry about having any kind of surgery—it may be even more troubling when the breasts or genital area are involved. Most people do return to the kind of sex life they enjoyed before surgery.

  • Hysterectomy

    is surgery to remove a woman’s uterus because of pain, bleeding, fibroids, or other reasons. Often, when an older woman has a hysterectomy, the ovaries are also removed. Deciding whether to have this surgery can leave both women and their partners worried about their future sex life. If you’re concerned about any changes you might experience with a hysterectomy, talk with your gynecologist or surgeon.

  • Mastectomy is surgery to remove all or part of a woman’s breast because of breast cancer. This surgery may cause some women to lose their sexual interest, or it may leave them feeling less desirable or attractive to their partners. In addition to talking with your doctor, sometimes it is useful to talk with other women who have had this surgery. Programs like the American Cancer Society’s “Reach to Recovery” can be helpful for both women and men. If you want your breast rebuilt (reconstruction), talk to your cancer doctor or surgeon.
  • Prostatectomy is surgery that removes all or part of a man’s prostate because of cancer or an enlarged prostate. It may cause urinary incontinence or ED. If you need this operation, talk with your doctor before surgery about your concerns.
  • Medications. Some drugs can cause sexual problems. These include some blood pressure medicines, antihistamines, antidepressants, tranquilizers, Parkinson’s disease or cancer medications, appetite suppressants, drugs for mental problems, and ulcer drugs. Some can lead to ED or make it hard for men to ejaculate. Some drugs can reduce a woman’s sexual desire or cause vaginal dryness or difficulty with arousal and orgasm. Check with your doctor to see if there is a different drug without this side effect.
  • Alcohol. Too much alcohol can cause erection problems in men and delay orgasm in women.

Am I Too Old to Worry About Safe Sex?

Age does not protect you from sexually transmitted diseases. Older people who are sexually active may be at risk for diseases such as syphilis, gonorrhea, chlamydial infection, genital herpes, hepatitis B, genital warts, and trichomoniasis.

Almost anyone who is sexually active is also at risk of being infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. The number of older people with HIV/AIDS is growing. You are at risk for HIV/AIDS if you or your partner has more than one sexual partner, if you are having unprotected sex, or if either you or your partner is sharing needles. To protect yourself, always use a condom during sex that involves vaginal or anal penetration.

A man needs to have a full erection before putting on a condom.

Talk with your doctor about ways to protect yourself from all sexually transmitted diseases and infections. Go for regular checkups and testing. Talk with your partner. You are never too old to be at risk.

Can Emotions Play a Part?

Sexuality is often a delicate balance of emotional and physical issues. How you feel may affect what you are able to do and what you want to do. Many older couples find greater satisfaction in their sex lives than they did when they were younger. In many cases, they have fewer distractions, more time and privacy, no worries about getting pregnant, and greater intimacy with a lifelong partner.

As we age, our bodies change, including our weight, skin, and muscle tone, and some older adults don’t feel as comfortable in their aging bodies. Older adults, men and women alike, may worry that their partners will no longer find them attractive. Aging-related sexual problems like the ones listed above can cause stress and worry. This worry can get in the way of enjoying a fulfilling sex life.

Older couples face the same daily stresses that affect people of any age. They may also have the added concerns of illness, retirement, and lifestyle changes, all of which may lead to sexual difficulties. Talk openly with your partner, and try not to blame yourself or your partner. You may also find it helpful to talk with a therapist, either alone or with your partner. Some therapists have special training in helping with sexual problems. If you sense changes in your partner’s attitude toward sex, don’t assume they are no longer interested in you or in an active sex life. Talk about it. Many of the things that cause sexual problems in older adults can be helped.

What Can I Do?

There are things you can do on your own for an active and enjoyable sex life. If you have a long-term partner, take time to enjoy each other and to understand the changes you both are facing.

Don’t be afraid to talk with your doctor if you have a problem that affects your sex life. He or she may be able to suggest a treatment. For example, the most common sexual difficulty of older women is painful intercourse caused by vaginal dryness. Your doctor or a pharmacist can suggest over-the-counter vaginal lubricants or moisturizers to use. Water-based lubricants are helpful when needed to make sex more comfortable. Moisturizers are used on a regular basis, every 2 or 3 days. Or, your doctor might suggest a form of vaginal estrogen.

If ED is the problem, it can often be managed and perhaps even reversed with medication or other treatments. There are pills that can help. They should not be used by men taking medicines containing nitrates, such as nitroglycerin. The pills do have possible side effects. Be wary of any dietary or herbal supplements promising to treat ED. Always talk to your doctor before taking any herb or supplement.

Physical problems can change your sex life as you get older. If you are single, dating and meeting new people may be easier later in life when you’re more sure of yourself and what you want. If you’re in a relationship, you and your partner may discover new ways to be together as you get older. Talk to your partner or partners about your needs. You may find that affection—hugging, kissing, touching, and spending time together—can be just what you need, or a path to greater intimacy and sex.

Read about this topic in Spanish. Lea sobre este tema en español.

For More Information About Sexuality in Later Life

https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/sexuality-later-life

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Rural Area Resource Guides

Rural Area Resource Guides

Community Survey to help build Resource Guides for Trans and Non Gender Conforming in Rural Areas

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Take the Survey

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Thurston County

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Snohomish County

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Pierce County

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Are you a Significant Other, Friend, Family member, Ally or Service Provider?

Take the SOFFA Community Survey to help contribute to these guides!

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Special Event Support

Special Event Support

Provide set up, tear down, hosting of special events.

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