National

Mar 15, 2010 11:12 AM by Associated Press

Gay seniors come out late, start second lifetime

Those who work with seniors say they're seeing growth in the number of people in their 60s, 70s and 80s coming out of the closet as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender.

Social scientists have long noted that people are coming out younger and younger. They say there's a similar trend at the other end of the age spectrum.

Growing awareness and acceptance of varied sexualities and gender identities in the U.S. helps explain the shift.

Support groups and services have cropped up to help such seniors.

Experts say coming out late in life comes with a unique set of hurdles. That includes fear of being shunned by children and grandchildren and a sense of loss over having fewer years to live life outside the closet.

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