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Letters to the Editor, Jan. 12 to 15

Suffering from male pattern maleness

EDITOR: I’ve been observing relationships. My primary interest has been the relationships between men and women. After years of observation, my favorite relationships seem to be successful because the woman is smarter. I do not mean to crush the hopes of single men everywhere of finding that special someone. Smart women understand men. Smart men empathize with women.

Women that understand men know we suffer from maleness. All men believe they know what’s going on, that we are great drivers and magnificent lovers. These are three symptoms of individuals who suffer from maleness. Even though we get lost, wreck the car and fall asleep. Mr. Entertainment knows this is the exception that proves the point.

Men that are smart empathize with women. Oh, we may not agree, but we understand that she is absolutely sure about the way she feels. She is not asking or expecting us to feel the same way. I may feel differently about eh whole situation. All she is asking me to do is acknowledge her feelings. All I have to do is say, “Yeah, baby, I understand how you feel.”

Men sexualize their emotions, their boats, their cars, pretty much anything that moves. Women emotionalize their sexuality. They hear or see something and they let you know how it effects them on an emotional level. Men feel things. We just don’t get emotional as quickly. Somewhere between sunset and breakfast we have to find common ground.

Yes it is love that makes the world go ‘round. Money puts gas in the tank and that make the tires go ‘round. So bring me a pound of flesh. Bring me a pound of free will. Show me a man who says he understands women. Together we will drink with someone who is delusional. Show me a woman who likes to have a good time. I’ll show you a happy man.

Eric Heine

Glen Ellen

Looking for connection

EDITOR: In October, the North Bay nonprofit that I work for, LGBTQ Connection, launched a new Sonoma Valley site for our LGBTQ community building, support and youth leadership program. LGBTQ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning individuals with and for whom my organization advocates.

My family left Mexico when I was 5 and we arrived to San Diego poor. My mom worked six days a week as a lunch lady, a cleaning lady, and as a bus driver to support our family. I quickly learned the price of family and belonging. I loved them, but I did not know if their love for me would stop if I told them that I like boys. As I grew, I began to isolate more and more since I wasn’t sure who to trust with my secret. If they knew I was gay, would my teachers and friends still like me? Would my mom still love me? Would my family stop inviting me over? Away at college, on the edge of backbreaking sadness, I finally and unexpectedly found a group of loving mentors under the group Queer People of Color. They not only accepted me for my sexuality, but also recognized how important my heritage was, and celebrated all of me.

Like me, some have to leave home in order to find a place they feel safe to come out and feel accepted and understood. No one should have to leave home or Sonoma Valley to feel part of a community that accepts all of them. At LGBTQ Connection, I work with youth to create stronger communities so that they can feel loved right where they are.

In order to better address mental health disparities within marginalized populations across the state, the

California Department of Public Health’s Office of Health Equity is investing in exemplary promising programs like ours. LGBTQ Connection has years of proven success empowering LGBTQ youth in Napa and Santa Rosa as leaders of change, growing vibrant community movements that are multi-generational and cross-cultural.

To start this work in Sonoma Valley, we are launching a youth leadership team and bimonthly LGBTQ youth support group, and already have been offering LGBTQ trainings and support throughout the community. Currently, we are recruiting eight youth to be coached as leaders for our inaugural team launching in late January.

Connect with us if you’d like to be involved with our LGBTQ community and movement building and help us create more affirming spaces for youth, seniors and our full community. We’re always looking for support with events and trainings, food donations for our youth meetings, and volunteers to help us behind the scenes. eliseo@lgbtqconnection.org.

Eliseo Rivas

Sonoma Valley