Gen Silent explores the issues of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) elders in their ability to seek care comfortably as they age. Many of these seniors are estranged from friends and family or may have had their friends or their created family die during the AIDS crisis of the 80s. Others fear being out to caregivers for out of concern for discrimination. Gen Silent interviews some Boston area seniors to hear what they have to say about aging and seeking care.
This documentary was very eye-opening. Not only for the understanding of issues facing LGBT elders but also for understanding LGBT history itself. There were many things that I did not know about the LGBT community members who came before me. Among the social conventions discussed were lesbians dressing as feminine as possible as to not be discovered; lesbians taking gay men or gay men taking lesbians to family gatherings and social functions as relationships of convenience; gay men taking feminine monikers so as you talked about your partner to people, it made it seem like you were in an opposite-sex relationship; never giving your real name in gay social situations just for fear of someone tracking you down and outing you.
Gen Silent is something that everyone should watch; caregiver, elder, young and especially the gay community. These are the people who helped us be where we are today. They helped to make the footpaths that would become our well worn trails to that land that we dream of – equality. We should all be paying more attention to getting them the care that they need.