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Connections, Vol. 3, No. 1, January 1981
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Connections, Vol. 3, No. 1, January 1981 - File 013. 1981-01. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. February 21, 2020. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/gcam/item/1504/show/1499.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(1981-01). Connections, Vol. 3, No. 1, January 1981 - File 013. Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM) Digital Archive. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/gcam/item/1504/show/1499

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Connections, Vol. 3, No. 1, January 1981 - File 013, 1981-01, Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM) Digital Archive, University of Houston Libraries, accessed February 21, 2020, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/gcam/item/1504/show/1499.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Connections, Vol. 3, No. 1, January 1981
Contributor
  • Olinger, James K.
Publisher Gay Community Services
Date January 1981
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
Place
  • Austin, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 5962584
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
  • LGBT Research Collection
  • Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM) Digital Archive
Rights No Copyright - United States
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 013
Transcript 12 CONNECTIONS^ BOOKS THE MENDOLA REPORT Reviewed by Lars Eighner For what it is, The Mendola Report deserves to be bought, read, and carefully considered by gay couples, by gays who are considering coupling, and even by those happy singles who have no intentions of coupling. But, for what it pretends to be, The Mendola Report deserves a healthy Bronx cheer. Ms. Mendola set out to investigate 'those quiet gay couples who live in a style that does not draw attention to itself.' She sent a questionaire through a network of friends and organizations - but definitely NOT BARS. She reported the response to her questionaire and interviewed a psychologist and a number of couples. The Mendola Report presents a number of issues which starry-eyed young couples often overlook, like those dreary insurance and property arrangements. It also shows that coupling, for gays or straights, naturally involves some friction and adjustment problems. It is far better to be prepared, and these insights are easily worth the price of the book. Unfortunately, Ms. Mendola presents her work as scientific research on the level of Masters and Johnson, Kinsey, or the Hite Report. She is not a researcher in this class, and she falls on her face attempting to make herself into one. Ms. Mendola has carefully tabulated the percentage responses to each of the questions on her questionaire. She appears to think her numbers mean something, for she cites her own figures time and again. It is very hard to tell whether she suffers more from pretension or ignorance. She reports being happy that the percentage return of her questionaire far exceeded that expected from mail-back questionaires. The possibility that this indicates a particualar bias in her sample does not appear to occur to her. Does she know better? Does she expect we won't notice? She refuses to distribute her questionaire in bars, then cheerfully concludes that coupled male homosexuals are no more likely to be promiscuous than coupled male heterosexuals. The possibility that the promiscuous couples could be hanging out at the bar is of no apparent concern. And she slips-in the tacit assumption that there is something wrong with promiscuity. Ms. Mendola does not acknowledge any studies of homosexual couples which preceeded hers. Is she unaware of this body of literature? Or does she simply not care to invite comparison between her chatty, amateur volume and the work of the serious investigators? There is pleaty of room for a popularization of the findings of the academics, or even for an amateur to take issue. Ms. Mendola does not have to pretend to have made the only significant contribution to this field in order to produce a worthwhile book. But the larger flaw of The Mendola Report is its failing to make it clear that it is investigating only one small alternative in gay lifestyle, and, in fact, only one general form of gay coupling. Her kind of gay couple is just like straight married couples - only different. She assumes the values of straight society and tries to show that gay couples can live up to them. COUPLING: A PARTIAL CHECKLIST by Lars Eighner How much you love each other, whether your arrangement will be open, closed or soirewhere in between, and what you like in bed - these questions are likely to be answered by the time you are thinking of forming a couple. Here are a few you might not have considered, but which can make the difference: Where will you live? Will you both have family, friends and acquaintances there? What determines where you live? One partner's job? Is one partner tied to a locality for some important reason? Will you both work? If not, will the partner who stays at home get an allowance of mad money? How will you handle money? If one of you doesn't work, what will be done about the hole in the resume in case of death or separation? Who will own the house and/or the car? Is there a will to protect the surviving consort from the avarice of relatives? Will there be ready cash for the survivor in case the will is contested? What about exes, male or female? Children? How will they be dealt with? Will your arrangement affect visiting rights or custody? What do your families know? What will they be told? Is there likely to be trouble? Is there, for example, an aging grandparent who need not be given an explicit picture of the arrangement? What are your expectations in case of a job loss or financial reversals? Are there religious differences? What about housekeeping? Pets? Who is in charge of the decorating? What do friends think? Will they be supportive? How will predatory singles be dealt with? Do you have coupled friends to socialize with? What aspects of your life have been geared to being single? How is the health of your consort? Your own? Is there an age difference? What can reasonably be expected of that difference over time? Is there a fundamental difference in degree of commitment? What are the relative strengths and natures of your mutual dependencies? Have previous relationships fallen into a set pattern? What is your own real motivation for coupling? What do you think your consort's motivation is? What are the reasonable prospects for significant changes in your life situation? What are your occupational goals? How will you meet them? Are there drug or alcohol problems? Gambling? Does one partner have reservations about his/her sexual identity? Will your partner be able to interact successfully with your friends? Your family? Your business associates? Are there cultural differences? Political differences? These are only some of the possible important questions. Many do not have right answers and some will not be very important for a given individual. Nonetheless, 'the pair who spend hours discussing the wedding, but no time confronting questions like these may be in for some unpleasant surprises. If you believe the object of Gay Liberation is to be just like straight people - only different, then you will warm to Ms. Mendola's thesis. If you appreciate the alternatives offered by the gay lifestyle, then you will have to take The Mendola Report with a grain of salt. The Mendola Report: A New Look at Gay Couples, by Mary Mendola. Crown Publishers, One Park Avenue, New York NY 10016. 288 pages. $12.95.
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