October Program: Dealing with Shame and Judgment

JeffLubsenAt the October meeting, Jeff Peterson will speak on “The Importance of Accepting Your LGBT Family Member or Friend: How to Overcome the Shackles of Judgement and Shame.”

Jeff Peterson (formerly Jeff Lubsen) is the co-founder and organizer of the Healthcare Guild, a national non-profit organization dedicated to helping sexual and gender minorities and affirming and culturally competent health care. The Healthcare Guild focuses on connecting consumers to LGBTQIA affirming healthcare providers and offering education and networking for providers. It is a grassroots group made of mental and medical healthcare providers dedicated to improving healthcare for sexual and gender minorities, and is free of charge for both consumers and providers. Their website is healthcareguild.com

Jeff is a Nationally Certified Counselor, a Licensed Professional Counselor in Colorado and a PhD candidate in Clinical Mental Health Counseling Education and Supervision. He serves on the editorial review board for the Journal of LGBT issues in Counseling. Over the past year Jeff co-authored a chapter in the book Counseling Gay Men, adolescents, & Boys. He has given presentations at national conferences about the risks of conversion therapy, and about dealing with the psychological effects of shame. 

Jeff’s private practice, Denver Psychotherapy, LLC, focuses on couples and relationship enhancement, sexual and gender identity issues, and sexual dysfunction and he currently facilitates on of Denver’s longest running gay mens’s sexual health groups. 

September Program: We’ll Collaborate with Jeffco Caucus to Show Film

For the September program, PFLAG Denver is collaborating with the JeffCo Democratic GLBT Caucus to show the DVD documentary, Ruthie and Connie: Every Room in the House. This film examines the lives of two women who experience an evolution of authenticity and become a committed couple later in life.

Ruthie Berman and Connie Kurtz, both born in Brooklyn in the 1930s, met in the late 1950s and became friends. Both were married to men and had children at the time. Nearly 20 years later, their paths crossed once again and they fell in love. As a lesbian couple, they successfully sued the New York City Board of Education for domestic partner benefits in 1988, winning (in 1994) such benefits for all New York City employees. The couple went on talk shows, i.e., The Phil Donahue Show and Geraldo, to talk about the case, and came out of the closet on Donahue in 1988. They started PFLAG branches in Florida and New York. They were married on July 26, 2011, in New York.

The original film was made in 2002 and won six best documentary awards within a year. We will show the updated 2014 version (58 minutes).

The Jefferson County Democratic Party’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Caucus was officially formed on July 18, 2001. Their monthly meetings are open to all (third Wednesday, 6:30 p.m., at JeffCo Dems Headquarters, 8725 W. 14th Ave., Suite 130, in Lakewood, 80215), and area GLBTs and supportive Dems are encouraged to attend. Their mission includes supporting the Jefferson County Democratic Party and its candidates; providing a forum in which GLBT citizens and supporters may gather, discuss issues, and advise the county Democratic Party on matters of interest to the GLBT community; and complementing the work of the Colorado Stonewall Democrats, an officially recognized Initiative of the Colorado State Democratic Party.

On Sept. 4 the New Families Support Group will meet as usual from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in Room 104. All will gather in the Community Room at 7:30 p.m. for the program.

August Program: Transgender Experiences


At the August meeting, transwoman Christine Bland will speak about her experiences.

Christine has worked for Lockheed Martin for over 25 years. She is currently the Orion (the next generation space shuttle) “subject matter expert for digital engineering.”

Christine is actively involved with the Lockheed Martin (L.M.) LGBT Forums at the corporate level. She has also been a highly visible role model for L.M. LGBT employees since the day she transitioned in 2011. She has participated on multiple panels including STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) outreach at a number of universities. She is the Chair of the L.M. Transgender Council and Co-Chair of the Leadership Forum workshop. She also served as the Vice-President for the Gender Identity Center of Colorado. 

Christine is a professional artist (pictured at left in her studio) who works in oils and acrylics. Her artwork can be seen a rjfineart.com and is also on display at the LGBT Center and Lockheed Martin. She paints to live music for charity. Her latest event was the Denver 2014 PrideFest to support the transgender programs. 

The new Families Support Group will meet as usual from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. in Room 104. All with gather in the Community Room at 7:30 for the program. 

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