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Real talk about kinky guys, depression, and suicide

  • Mr. S Leather Studio 385A 8th Street San Francisco, CA, 94103 United States (map)
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The holidays can be one of the darkest times of year, and we don't like to talk about it while others are celebrating, as we witness their chosen families revel in their traditions and the love of their partners. Free floating anxiety, an overwhelming sense of dread, hopelessness over financial crises, the state of politics in our country, intense feelings, or loss of feelings, feeling forever on the outside, getting older, body shame, invisible disabilities, chronic pain... Some of these? All of these? Something else?

These feelings isolate us. We don't want to bring our friends down. Nobody on facebook has these problems. Its just us, and its shameful. Maybe we don't yet have a support network and don't know where to turn.

Depression—and suicide—in the men’s community has its own stigma. How do we handle all of this when we're in a D/s relationship? How do you ask your submissive for help when "that's not how this is supposed to work?" How do you help your Dom and respect your power dynamic when he is in crisis? How does the unbreakable slave tell his Master he is incapable of offering service? 

We want to talk openly about recognizing these feelings in ourselves, and making it safe and normal to talk about it so that we can find ways to get ourselves help and offer help to each other when appropriate.

Join LDG’s Richard Sprott as he talks with  trusted colleagues and experts for a few hours in December 6th at Mr S Studio (above the store). Please bring your questions. Please reach out to friends who have been isolating and may benefit from some brotherhood, real talk, resources, and light refreshments.

The panelists have asked that attendees send over questions so that they can help facilitate a more meaningful discussion. Enter them below. They will be sent anonymously.

Panel

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RICHARD SPROTT, PhD, is a developmental psychologist and researcher.  He has taught many many classes on psychopathology, psychopharmacology, mental health, and has intimately researched the kink community over the past 12 years.  He also runs the LDG Mentoring Program, and he is the research director for The Alternative Sexualities Health Research Alliance (TASHRA) which completed the first ever national kink health survey in 2016.

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CARLOS H. MORALES is a licensed marriage and family therapist practicing in San Francisco in private practice and at Kaiser Permanente since 2007. He started my internship in the early 2000’s at the LGBT Center in San Diego, since then his passion has been working in the LGBT and kink communities. His passion developed in great part from a negative experience in his early 20’s with a mental health provider who stigmatized and belittled his kink proclivities. Through education, internship and post license clinical work it’s become crystal clear to him the need for clinical/ therapeutic safe spaces free of judgment for our community members. For more information about his practice you can search his website at www.moralespsychservices.com.

CAL DOMINGUE, LMFT, has a private practice in San Francisco & has worked with clients in the LGBTQ, kink, poly, and leather communities for almost 20 years. He is a member of Kink Aware Professionals; a past president and webmaster of Gaylesta (LGBTQ-friendly therapists), & a member of Bay Area Open Minds (therapists who specialize in all expressions of sexuality and gender). He also recently joined the faculty of http://KinkKnowledgeable.com (an online training program designed to help therapists develop expertise in working with kinky/leather clients). Cal has attended LDG for several years and is an associate member of The 15 Association. He is one of the support advisors for the LDG mentoring program and has participated in several previous LDG programs. He is polyamorous,  living with his vanilla partner of 29 years & proudly serving his Sir of almost 3 years, who was a member of the original LDG Steering Committee. You can contact Cal at cal@caltherapy.org, and visit his website at http://caltherapy.org.

ANNA RANDALL, MSW, DHS, MPH is TASHRA's Executive Director. She is a clinical sexologist and sex therapist in the San Francisco Bay Area. Anna has over 25 years of experience in both the private and public sectors of health and sexuality and career focus is on the nexus of healthcare and sexual health. She lectures nationally to both professionals and consumers on the special mental health needs of sexual minorities and research focuses on relational power dynamics, self actualization and attachment. Her busy therapy practices in SF and Silicon Valley exemplify the vast interests and personalities of the kink community. http://www.drannarandall.com/