Sometimes the family members and friends of people in the LGBTQ community have
questions and concerns, but find it difficult to find a place to talk.
The Faulk Center for Counseling of Boca Raton has created a new support group to make it easier for those family members and friends to have a place to talk or listen.
Dr. Holly Katz, the Faulk Center for Counseling Clinical & Training Director, said there is a support group called PFLAG, Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, with chapters in Fort Lauderdale and Lake Worth, but nothing in between.
“There is an absence of those kinds of services in the Boca Raton area,” she said. “We know that those who love and care for the LGBTQ community need their own support and education to assist them in the best way in their relationships with their loved ones.”
So, the center created a support group for the friends and family members of the LGBTQ community last month. It already has a support group for LGBTQ adults that began earlier this year. That effort is joint between the Faulk Center and Jewish Federation Services.
Dr. Katz said family support is critical to the emotional well-being of the LGBTQ community. Groups are run by volunteers and clinicians-in-training.
Marilyn Rosenbaum is one of those volunteers offering to help run the support group. She has been trained by the center and has helped in various support groups for the last 15 years.
“I feel it is my responsibility to give something back,” she said. “I have helped many people in the gay community over the years.”
She has gay family members and said she is at a point in her life where she wants to continue to give back.
“If I can help others, then I have given something back,” she said. “What I hope to achieve is to help people to build bridges rather than build fences through education.”
The support group runs on Mondays from 6 to 7 p.m. at the Faulk Center for Counseling, 22455 Boca Rio Road, Boca Raton.
It cost $5 per session and drop-ins are welcome. For more information, call 561-483-5300.
The joint support group with JFS for LGBTQ+ individuals meets Fridays at the Faulk Center from noon to 1:15 p.m.