Menstuff® has information on Reparative or Conversion Therapy. Reparative Therapy claims to be able to remove the inclination for same sex attraction for LGBT people through talking. Actually, it is the attempted brainwashing of LGBT people.
Psychologists to review stance on
Related Issues: Ex-Gay
or Sexual Anorexic?; It's
Past Time for this Ex-Gay Business to Get with It
Organizations to Watch Out For: American Anglican Council, Desert Stream Ministries, Exodus International, Focus on the Family, Life Ministries International, Love in Action International, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) and Redeemed Lives Ministries (RLM).
The term "reparative therapy" has multiple definitions:
The term "conversion therapy" is sometimes used as a synonym for reparative therapy.
A person's "sexual orientation" is normally defined by the gender of those to whom the person is sexually attracted; homosexuals are attracted only to members of the same sex; bisexuals are attracted to both men and women, but not necessarily to an equal degree. However, promoters of these therapies often define "sexual orientation" in terms of sexual behavior.
The effectiveness of these therapies has yet to be properly evaluated. They may be found to be helpful; it may turn out to be useless; they may be eventually recognized as ineffective and potentially harmful. Many information sources do agree that:
Although there have been a few studies, all have serious deficiencies. Some anecdotal evidence is available -- both negative and positive.
Therapists who engage in these therapies are exposing their clients to an unproven, experimental treatment. Clients should realize that little is known about the potential benefits or dangers of these therapies. Dr. Jack Drescher, a medical doctor who works extensively with homosexuals stated: "It is not clear...if reparative therapists ever provide informed consent to explain these substantial risks to the patients they treat, or even if they are fully aware of the costs to the unrepaired."
Many recent, experimental forms of therapy have proven disastrous to the quality of life of the client-victims. Recovered memory therapy was one; another is multiple personality disorder therapy (a.k.a. dissociative identity disorder). Both triggered many suicides and caused a great deal of pain, at both the personal and family level. Therapies which attempt to change sexual orientation may be similarly dangerous.
There are two "solitudes" within society dealing with homosexual issues:
Each of these groups assigns different meanings to common English words and phrases. This is not unique. The same phenomenon occurs in the field of abortion, corporal punishment and other areas of social debate. It makes dialog and communication very difficult.
In the past, researchers attempted to change sexual orientation through psychotherapy, aversion therapy, nausea producing drugs, castration, electric shock, brain surgery, breast amputations, etc. All failed. These methods were largely abandoned by the mid-1970's. Reparative therapy and transformational ministries emerged in the early 1970's.
The source of modern-day secular reparative therapy can be traced back many decades to the research of Irving Bieber, Lawrence Hatterer and Sigmond Freud. Their conclusions about homosexuality had long been abandoned by almost all mental health professionals. However, Elizabeth Moberly, a British, conservative, Christian theologian studied those works and developed a new theory of the cause of homosexuality. She believes that it is solely caused by environmental factors -- incompetence on the part of the parent of the same gender. She also developed a technique in the early 1980's which attempts to change the sexual orientation of homosexual adults. She has done no clinical work to support the validity of her theory or the effectiveness of her therapeutic technique. She is a theologian, not a trained mental health professional. Her book "Homosexuality: A new Christian ethic" is still in print and is widely circulated among conservative Christians. 1
She abandoned "Freud's emphasis on the domineering mother and focused on the effect of the 'passive' or 'distant' father. Moberly determined...that the homosexual men in the studies were suffering from what she termed 'defensive detachment' and 'same sex ambivalence.' The theory presumes that the young boy, for any of a variety of reasons, did not bond with his father in a meaningful way." 2 Lacking a positive relationship with his father, the boy "defensively detaches" from any potential friendships with other boys his own age. After puberty, he redirects his longing for a close relationship with his father and other males into a search for love. He sexualizes the longing, feels attraction to other men, and becomes an active homosexual. (We have used a male example here because almost all reparative therapy is done on men).
During therapy, the gay client is encouraged to enter into an emotionally close, non-sexual, non-erotic relationship with another male adult. Once he achieves this, heterosexual feelings are expected to emerge over time and homosexual feelings are expected to fade.
As mentioned above, no peer-reviewed study has been published on reparative therapy. No longitudinal study has ever been conducted into its long-term effectiveness and hazards. However, many of the larger conservative Christian organizations, like Coral Ridge Ministries and Focus on the Family claim that this and other therapies have a high cure rate. Meanwhile many psychiatrists who do not support this therapy report anecdotal evidence of gays and lesbians who have become seriously depressed after the inevitable failure of their therapy; some have committed suicide.
These conversion therapies are based on the belief that the "cause(s)" of homosexuality are found in the environment -- specifically from the parenting incompetence of the father while the boy is young. We have found six types of studies into the nature of homosexuality that appear to indicate that this is not true:
The first type appears to show that inadequate or non-existent fathering is not a factor in sexual orientation:
Five other studies appear to indicate that sexual orientation (at least for males) is largely genetically determined:
Within the mental health community there are two schools of thought about these therapies:
Many hundreds of conservative Christian therapists and ministries promote them as effective and safe. These therapies mesh well with their fundamental religious beliefs: Starting with three fundamental religious beliefs common to most conservative Christians, that:
Then it would appear irrational for God to create about 5% of the embryos as homosexual. Thus, sexual orientation cannot be genetically predetermined.
Starting with another two fundamental religious beliefs:
Then, sexual orientation must be changeable, at least for born-again believers, through effort, counseling, and prayer.
Almost all of the hundreds of thousands of remaining mental health professionals feel that therapy is:
Within medicine, there are strong governmental controls that govern the introduction of new medications and treatment regimens. But mental and physical therapies are largely unregulated. Anybody can introduce and promote a new, totally unproven, form of experimental therapy. If it catches on, thousands of therapists may adopt the concept and start treating their patients. Over the last two decades we have seen treatments based on therapists' beliefs in: abuse of patients during former lifetimes, abuse during UFO visitations, facilitated communication for autistic children, indwelling demonic spirits, mind control within religious Cults, multiple personality disorder/dissociative identity disorder, recovered memory therapy, ritual abuse in day care centers, Satanic ritual abuse, and therapeutic touch.
All of these treatment methods have a few points in common:
Most of these have been shown to be frauds; all might eventually prove to be ineffective. Many generate a trail of devastated lives; some have been shown to trigger deep depression and suicide.
No consensus exists on the safety, effectiveness, and possible adverse consequences of conversion therapies at this time. We urge extreme caution.
Effectiveness of these therapies:
From our study of reparative therapy, we suspect that:
When it proves unsuccessful:
We have been able to find a few documented case of individuals with a homosexual orientation who report having changed to a heterosexual orientation. Almost all of the cases that we have located turned out to be false leads: the individual later admitted that he/she had not changed their orientation. Many have left the "ex-gay" movement to become an "ex-ex-gays."
Unfortunately, these suspicions are based on inadequate evidence. Certainty awaits a meaningful, credible study by mental health professionals. Unfortunately, the studies that have been made to date are seriously flawed.
1. Elizabeth Moberly, "Homosexuality: A new Christian ethic," (originally published in the early 1980's; reprinted 1997). Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
2. Jeffry Ford, "What is Reparative Therapy?," at: http://jgford.homestead.com/Fordessay.html
3. Mel White, Stranger at the Gate: To be Gay and Christian in America", Simon & Schuster, New York, NY, (1994) Read reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
These Ex-Gay" programs have been denounced by every respected medical and mental health care organization and child welfare agency in America, including the:
Source: Columbia University mathematics
professor, Peter Woit's blog: www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/blog/archives/000083.html
The American Psychological Association is embarking on the first review of its 10-year-old policy on counseling gays and lesbians, a step that gay-rights activists hope will end with a denunciation of any attempt by therapists to change sexual orientation.
Such efforts often called reparative therapy or conversion therapy are considered futile and harmful by many gay-rights activists. Conservative groups defend the right to offer such treatment, and say people with their viewpoint have been excluded from the review panel.
A six-member task force set up by the APA has its first meeting beginning next Tuesday.
Already, scores of conservative religious leaders and counselors, representing such groups as the Southern Baptist Convention and Focus on the Family, have written a joint letter to the APA, expressing concern that the task force's proposals would not properly accommodate gays and lesbians whose religious beliefs condemn gay sex.
"We believe that psychologists should assist clients to develop lives that they value, even if that means they decline to identify as homosexual," said the letter, which requested a meeting between APA leaders and some of the signatories.
APA spokeswoman Rhea Farberman said a decision on when and how to reply to the letter had not yet been made.
The current APA policy, adopted in 1997, opposes any counseling that treats homosexuality as a mental illness, but does not explicitly denounce reparative therapy. The APA has decided to review the policy at a time when gay-rights groups are increasingly critical of such treatment and groups that support it.
Conservatives contend that the review's outcome is preordained because the task force is dominated by gay-rights supporters.
"We're concerned," said Carrie Gordon Earll of Focus on the Family. "The APA does not have a good track record of listening to other views."
Joseph Nicolosi, a leading proponent of reparative therapy, predicted the task force would propose a ban of the practice and he vowed to resist such a move. Nicolosi, who was rejected as a task force nominee, is president of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality.
Clinton Anderson, director of the APA's Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Concerns Office, insisted the panel would base its findings on scientific research, not ideology. He defended the decision to reject certain conservative applicants to the task force.
"We cannot take into account what are fundamentally negative religious perceptions of homosexuality they don't fit into our world view," Anderson said.
One of the counselors denied a seat on the task force was Warren Throckmorton, a psychology professor at Grove City College near Pittsburgh. Though Throckmorton doesn't advocate a specific form of reparative therapy, he argues that psychologists should respect gay clients' religious beliefs in cases where the faith teaches that homosexual behavior is wrong.
"We work with clients to pursue their chosen values," he said. "If they are core, unwavering commitments to their religious belief, therapists should not try to persuade them differently under the guise of science."
However, one of the task force members, New York City psychiatrist Jack Drescher, said the conservatives don't acknowledge the harm that might be caused when a gay patient even voluntarily undergoes therapy to suppress or change sexual orientation.
"They want a rubber stamp of approval for a form of therapy that's questionable in its efficacy and they don't want to deal with the issue of harmful side effects," said Drescher, who is editor of the Journal of Gay and Lesbian Psychotherapy.
As the APA planned the policy review, it received input from gay-rights groups, including Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays.
PFLAG's executive director, Jody Huckaby, said reparative therapy had been particularly harmful for young gays whose parents insisted on trying to change their sexual orientation. His group contends these efforts can cause depression and suicidal behavior.
Current APA policy stipulates that no therapy should occur without "informed consent" of a gay or lesbian client. Jason Cianciotto of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force said he hoped the APA would declare that no young person could ever be deemed to have given informed consent, and thus no reparative therapy would be approved for minors.
The largest ministry that does counsel gays to change their sexual orientation is Exodus International. Its president, Alan Chambers who says prayer and therapy enabled him to move away from homosexuality is among those apprehensive of the APA review.
"I had hoped for more diversity on that panel," Chambers said. "I see a lot of people who represent the other side who don't believe that people like me have a right to self-determination."
The task force may submit a preliminary report to the
APA's directors in December. Anderson said a final report
might be completed by next March.
At end of story
Two federal judges in California have arrived at opposite conclusions on whether the state's first-of-its-kind law prohibiting licensed psychotherapists from trying to change the sexual orientations of gay minors violates the Constitution. The measure remains clear to take effect on Jan.1.
U.S. District Judge Kimberly Mueller on Tuesday refused to block the law after concluding that opponents who have sued in her Sacramento court to overturn it were unlikely to prove the ban on "conversion" therapy unfairly tramples on their civil rights.
The opponents argued the law would make them liable for discipline if they merely recommended the therapy to patients or discuss it with them. Mueller said they didn't demonstrate that they were likely to win, so she wouldn't block the law.
Mueller issued her decision in a lawsuit filed by four counselors, two families, a professional organization for practitioners and a Christian therapists group. It came half a day after her colleague, U.S. District Judge William Shubb, handed down a somewhat competing ruling in a similar, but separate lawsuit.
Saying he found the First Amendment issues presented by the ban to be compelling, Shubb late Monday ordered the state to temporarily exempt three people named in the case before him two mental health providers and a former patient who is studying to practice sexual orientation change therapy.
The judge said during a hearing earlier Monday that he would have considered keeping the law from taking effect for all licensed therapists, but that the case before him had not been filed as a class action that could be applied to unnamed plaintiffs.
Sen. Ted Lieu, who sponsored the law, said Tuesday that because Shubb limited the scope of his decision, Mueller ruling means the law may be applied statewide at the beginning of the new year except for the three individuals mentioned.
The future of the statute remains unclear, however. Mathew Staver, chairman of the Christian legal group Liberty Counsel, appealed Mueller's decision to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and said he would seek an emergency injunction to keep the law on hold until its constitutionality is determined.
"I'm really stunned by this decision," Staver said. "I think Judge Shubb's decision was really on the money."
The law, which was passed by the Legislature and signed
by Gov. Jerry Brown in October, states that therapists and
counselors who use "sexual orientation change efforts" on
clients under 18 would be engaging in unprofessional conduct
and subject to discipline by state licensing boards.
Shumlin Signs Law to Ban Conversion Therapy in Vermont
"It's absurd to think that being gay or transgender is something to be cured of," Gov. Shumlin said. "Our country has come a long way in a short period of time in recognizing the civil rights of members of the LGBT community, and I am so proud that Vermont has taken a leadership role at every step of the way. At a time when the rights of LGBT individuals are under attack in other parts of the country, Vermont will continue to stand up to hatred and bigotry and show the rest of the country what tolerance, understanding, and common humanity look like."
Conversion therapy has been widely discredited by the scientific community. A 2015 report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) "found that variations in sexual orientation and gender identity are normal, and that conversion therapies or other efforts to change sexual orientation or gender identity are not effective, are harmful, and are not appropriate therapeutic practices."
Vermont joins California, Illinois, New Jersey, Oregon, and Washington, D.C. in enacting a law to ban conversion therapy. Earlier this year, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced regulations to ban public and private insurers from covering the practice.
The ban on conversion therapy takes effect July 1,
Youth Mental Health Preservation Act
Introduced in Missouri for First Time
Rep. McCreery added, Conversion therapy is a dangerous practice that needs to be stopped. Lawmakers should be doing everything in our power to protect all children.
Missouri makes the fourth state (Arizona, Virginia, Washington) that has introduced legislation banning conversion therapy practices for minors by licensed therapists in 2018.
According to the Human Rights Campaign, LGBT youth who are highly rejected by their parents are more than eight times as likely to attempt suicide compared to LGBT youth who were not rejected or even a little rejected.*
What is conversion therapy?
Conversion therapy, also referred to as "reparative therapy, ex-gay therapy, and sexual orientation change efforts, is a widely discredited practice that attempts to change an individual's sexual orientation or gender identity. Practices to cure individuals of their same-sex sexual orientations and transgender identities include a number of techniques ranging from shaming to hypnosis to inducing vomiting to electric shocks.
These practices have been condemned by the American Counseling Association, American Medical Association, and American Psychiatric Association. In 2009, the American Psychological Association (APA) issued a report** enumerating the direct risks of conversion therapy to include, among others: depression, guilt, helplessness, hopelessness, shame, social withdrawal, and a distinct rise in suicidality.
There are no cities in Missouri in which conversion therapy is banned for minors. Nine states plus D.C. have passed similar legislation, including California, Connecticut, Illinois, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont. Several cities in Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania have also banned conversion therapy practices for minors.
What would the Youth Mental Health Preservation Act do?
These laws prohibit licensed mental health practitioners from subjecting minors to harmful "conversion therapy" practices that attempt to change their sexual orientation or gender identity.
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contact us at 314-862-4900.
The US state could become the latest to outlaw the use of so-called conversion therapy to attempt to change the sexuality of minors. ?
Performing gay cure therapy on minors is already is illegal in nine US states and counting, as well as Switzerland, Malta, Taiwan, two Canadian provinces, and the Australian state of Victoria.
The practice is still technically legal in the UK.
Experts overwhelmingly agree that attempts to cure sexuality are futile, misguided, and often extremely harmful. Attempts to force teens to repress their sexuality has been linked to depression, self-harm and even suicide.
Washington state has this week become the latest to give the green light to a bill to outlaw the treatment.
Lawmakers in the states House of Representatives approved the bill by a vote of 66-32, after it cleared the Senate earlier this month.
Although the vote was broadly along party lines, more than a dozen Republicans joined the states Democratic majority in voting for the ban.
The bill will now go back to the Senate for concurrence heading to the desk of the states Governor, Democrat Jay Inslee, who has previously vowed to sign the bill into law.
Human Rights Campaign National Field Director Marty Rouse said: No child should be put through the abusive practice of so-called conversion therapy.
This outdated and dangerous practice has been rejected by medical professionals and has resulted in life-threatening consequences for countless LGBTQ youth.
We thank the state legislators who voted to protect young Washingtonians from this inhumane practice.
A bill was introduced in California last month which would see practitioners of debunked gay cure therapies prosecuted for consumer fraud.
Out lawmaker Evan Low, who sits on the states Legislative Assembly, drew up AB-2943, known as the Unlawful business practices: sexual orientation change efforts bill.
The bill would build on the existing consumer protection law to introduce a possible conviction under state law for gay cure practitioners.
The UK government recently said it would consider banning gay cure therapy.
British health minister Jackie Doyle-Price said: This is an issue the Government is keeping under review and we are constantly working towards improving the evidence base.
She added: The Government rejects utterly the notion that sexuality is something to be cured, and condemns gay conversion therapy.
The evidence base is clear that conversion therapy is not only ineffective but is potentially harmful to participants.
That is why officials have worked with the main
registration and accreditation bodies for psychotherapy and
counselling practitioners, including the UK Council for
Psychotherapy, to develop a Memorandum of Understanding to
help put a stop to this bogus treatment.
some false notions about her, that is all the more reason she
needs and deserve my support. - R. Bernstein
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