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Lgbt Individuals Access And Experiences With Their Identity

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LGBT individuals access and experiences with services may be affected by their identity. Fredrikesen-Goldsen et al. (2014) stated, “In addition to discrimination in the larger society, LGBT older adults experience both overt and covert discrimination in health and human service settings. Discrimination within healthcare systems is a significant predictor of poor mental and physical health” (p. 93). In addition, due to ageism and heterosexism older LGBT individuals have less resources and services available to them, and they also may be afraid to seek out these services (Jessup & Dibble, 2012). Feeling like they are pressured to be invisible and silent due to previous experiences of institutional discrimination and insensitivity from professionals may also cause older LGBT individuals from seeking out mental health services (Hash & Rogers, 2013). In addition, many older LGBT adults feel the need to hide their identity of go “back into the closet” when receiving services or in long term care facilities which can lead to higher levels of psychological distress (Fredriksen-Goldsen et al, 2014). Hash & Roger’s (2013) stated,
Many older LGBT adults feel vulnerable in their neighborhoods; do not feel part of the gay community; experience the ramifications of ageism and homophobia; fear continued poor treatment as they age; and have strong, painful memories of and residual trauma from being criminalized, stigmatized, and terrified because of their sexual identity. Consequently,
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