AARP has released their findings on a survey they’ve conducted of LGBT adults age 45 and older.
The Maintaining Dignity survey that provides “insight on concerns and preferences of mid-life and older LGBT adults” has a lot of revealing data. Their information on the rate at which same-sex couples partner up to information on transgenders’ social support levels — all of which give reason for concern.
Partnering Patterns and Support Networks May Affect Future
Same-sex couples do not “partner” at the same rate by gender. Survey data shows gay men age 45-plus are far more likely to be single (57%) and live alone (46%) than lesbians, 39% of whom are single and 36% live alone. When asked about their social support network, gay men report being less connected than lesbians on every relationship type tested, from friends, to partners, to neighbors. This may put gay men at greater risk of isolation and potentially influences the types of services they will need later in life.
Transgender or gender expansive individuals are also less likely to be connected to sources of social support. Although more than half (53%) of transgender or gender expansive survey respondents have children or grandchildren, this group is least likely to say they consider gay or straight friends, family or neighbors part of their personal support network, putting them at increased risk of isolation now and as they age.
It’s astonishing to read that three out of four LGBT adults age 45 and older “say they are concerned about having enough support from family and friends as they age.” The report goes on to say that many are “worried about how they will be treated in long-term care facilities and want specific LGBT services for older adults.”
The alarming concerns of our community go on and on in the AARP’s survey findings. Now, that we know what to look for we need to do the legwork to ensure we all feel comfortable and safe as we advance in age.
Look at some of the charts provided by the AARP below and click here to read the AARP’s full report.