It has been a pleasure to see two new gay-affirmative films, God’s Own Country and Call Me by Your Name. I love the characters because they are not gay stereotypes but are instead complex, thoughtful, passionate human beings. The films blur the typical binary distinctions between straight and gay, challenging us to think of sexual behavior in more nuanced terms. And, in both films, the lovers are met with support and understanding from their families.

It is also extremely gratifying that audiences and critics alike have embraced these films. God’s Own Country recently won Best Picture at the British Independent Film Awards and Josh O’Connor, the picture’s lead, won Best Actor. Call Me by Your Name has received Golden Globe and Chicago Drama Critics Award Nominations for Best Picture, Best Actor for Timothy Chalamet, and Best Supporting Actor for Armie Hammer.


nglcc_rgb_lgbtbe_colortagI’m happy to announce that my business, Brian Carpenter Therapy, has just been certified as an LGBT Business Enterprise (LGBTBE®) through the National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce (NGLCC) Supplier Diversity Initiative.

I’m now nationally recognized as a diverse supplier by the NGLCC, its organizational allies, and corporate partners, joining the growing ranks of over 800 certified LGBTBEs.

That makes me eligible to participate in the NGLCC’s corporate partners’ supplier diversity programs, take advantage of the educational opportunities promoted by the NGLCC, and work to foster business to business relationship with other LGBTBEs.

(The National Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce is the business voice of the LGBT community and is the largest global not-for-profit advocacy organization specifically dedicated to expanding economic opportunities and advancements for LGBT people. NGLCC is the exclusive certification body for LGBT-owned businesses.)


I had a very good time last night at Dr. Sue Johnson’s presentation on Emotionally Focused Therapy for couples. Sue is a wonderful speaker, very relaxed with a nice sense of humor, who admits to being “obsessed” with her subject. Her depth of expertise is apparent and she communicates a complex subject very effectively.

Among the things I learned from Sue are that a couple’s communication skills, although valuable, are not necessarily enough to improve a couple’s long-term relationship. What can result in lasting change is a couple’s ability to be vulnerable with each other by getting in touch with and expressing their emotions. If they can do so, they can satisfy their basic human need to be connected to their partner and create a healthier, more gratifying relationship.

Congratulations to the Southern California Counseling Center–celebrating its 50th anniversary of providing affordable health care to our community–for sponsoring the event. And thanks to those who showed at the Renberg Theatre to make sure everything went smoothly, including Clay Crosby, Gail Wilburn, Jonathan Vicksburg, Marisa Ice, and Mojgan Farazian.


Last Saturday, I had the pleasure of attending the Models of Pride conference at USC, sponsored by the Los Angeles LGBT Center. It involved hundreds of LGBT teens, their parents, allies, and associated professionals.

The conference offered dozens of workshops covering a variety of teen and LGBT issues. In the workshops I attended, I learned (1) about working with teens, (2) about dealing with specific LGB and T issues, and (3) how to talk to teens about sex—and some important things to tell them!
Congratulations to the LA LGBT Center on a very successful event. Thanks for bringing us all together for an educational and stimulating day!











The LA Gay & Lesbian Center is sponsoring the 24th Annual Models of Pride Conference on October 29.

I’m looking forward to attending in support of LGBT youth!


Happy National Coming Out Day! Congratulations to all LGBT folks who exercise the power to be yourselves!

Creativity is often an up and down process, with periods of productivity followed by periods of relative inactivity. Understanding and accepting your particular rhythms can be very helpful and can reduce anxiety during the inactive periods. Those who imagine that creativity must be maintained without a break can be anxious that they are not doing “enough” or that their creativity will “fail” them if they are not constantly working.

Sometimes you may just need to take time off, perhaps in solitude or perhaps in the company of others who support or inspire you. Or you may need space, perhaps in a familiar, comfortable place, or possibly in a new environment that may excite and stimulate you.

Are you a creative person? Be kind to yourself. Trust yourself and your creativity. Know that creativity ebbs and flows. Give yourself the gifts of time and space without judgment.