Out of the Shadows: Reimagining Gay Men’s Lives

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Penguin Books Limited, Jun 4, 2019 - Social Science - 368 pages

'A gay man could read this book as if his life depended on it - and perhaps it does' Andrew Holleran, author of Dancer from the Dance

'Poignant and achingly beautiful' The New York Times

Even in our modern progressive world, it's not easy to be a gay man. While young men often come out more readily, even those from the most liberal of backgrounds still struggle to accept themselves and experience stigma, shame and difficulties with intimate relationships. They also suffer from ongoing trauma wrought by the AIDS epidemic, something that is all too often relegated to history.

Drawing on a lifetime's work as a clinical psychologist, Walt Odets uses the stories of his patients as well as those of his own deep relationships with other gay men to illuminate how these difficulties may be overcome. From a 74-year-old who only felt able to come out after his wife had died, to the boy raised in a strict religious family who worked his way to San Francisco, to the middle-aged defence lawyer who left everything behind to embrace a new life, the experiences here explore everything from grief to survival, childhood pain to the definition of gay itself. Out of the Shadows shows us how a new way forward is possible through learning to accept ourselves and others as they are, and independently inventing our own lives.

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User Review  - richardderus - LibraryThing

Pearl Ruled (p59) The first chapter, "Are Gay Men Homosexuals?", wants to delve deep into an old, old argument about identity and self-definition that, quite frankly, is beyond my capabilities just ... Read full review

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About the author (2019)

Walt Odets is a clinical psychologist and writer. He is the author of In the Shadow of the Epidemic: Being HIV-Negative in the Age of AIDS. He lives in Berkeley, where he has practised psychology since 1987.

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