Reparative (Conversion) Therapy

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 gays
Gay Conversion Therapy Law Temporarily Blocked By Federal Judge
Gov. Shumlin Signs Law to Ban Conversion Therapy in Vermont
Ending convesion theapy - samha - SAMHSA 76 page pdf 2015
Youth Mental Health Preservation Act Introduced in Missouri for First Time
Washington state passes ban on gay ‘cure’ therapy for minors
What a Small Portion of the Religious Community is Saying
Is a change in sexual orientation possible?

Policy Statements Denouncing Reparative Therapy
APA Council of Representatives Passes Resolution on So-Called Reparative Therapy
Fighting right wing lies and the "Ex-Gay" Fraud
Psychologists to review stance on gays
Hate Crimes
An exchange with the editor of Psychology Today regarding their ad policy for “ex-gay” advocates

Related Issues: Ex-Gay or Sexual Anorexic?; It's Past Time for this Ex-Gay Business to Get with It
American Academy of Pediatrics -
American Psychiatric Association
American Psychoanalytic Association -
American Psychological Association -
Psychiatric News -
Social Work Today -
UC Davis -
Joe Kort - Extreme Makeovers: What Reparative Therapy is Really All About, Tell CNN To Cover The Facts About "Reparative Therapy"!, Reparative Therapy and Health Insurance and Anti-Gay P-Fox President Expelled from American Counseling Association for life.
Bob Minor - "The Psychological Debate is Over", "Case Closed! Responding to Psychological Arguments Against Gay People" E-book

18:36 *
How Conversion Therapy Affects Your Mental Health
Gay teen describes traumatizing experiences at gay conversation camps
Gay Man Goes Undercover To Expose Conversion Therapy Clinic

Teens who say they were sent away because they were gay

I was in an ANTI-GAY commercial!!!! (NOT CLICKBAIT)

* The book with lots more info like this :) The Free book at

Living Through Gay Conversion Therapy (
Law Student Sent To Ex-Gay Therapy, Puts Counselor to Shame
Gay Twins Come Out To Each Other, Then To Mom.
Coming Out to My Dad, the Founder of Conversion Therapy
Anderson debates Texas GOPer on reparative therapy

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).


  • "There is no published scientific evidence supporting the efficacy of 'reparative therapy' as a treatment to change one's sexual orientation". American Psychiatric Association's 1997 Fact Sheet on Homosexual and Bisexual Issues.
  • "Exodus upholds redemption for the homosexual person as the process whereby sin's power is broken, and the individual is freed to know and experience true identity as discovered in Christ and His Church. That process entails the freedom to grow into heterosexuality". Exodus International's statement of belief.
  • "Relationship with Jesus Christ and a life of prayer are the keys to changing homosexual desires and fostering the development of healthy, nonsexual intimate relationships." Martha Kleder, Focus on the Family. 33
  • "There is no documentary evidence showing someone’s sexual preference can be changed by therapy. There is only anecdotal evidence, mostly from the therapists themselves, claiming that what they do works. That’s not very scientific. On the other hand, there’s no scientific evidence to show that this is impossible...It hasn’t been studied." Dr. Robert Spitzer, professor of psychiatry at Columbia University. In 2001, after he made this statement, he reported on a study that he had made. It indicated that reparative therapy has as a failure rate on the order of 99.98%


The term "reparative therapy" has multiple definitions:

  • Some define it as a specific secular counseling technique. It involves helping a gay or lesbian bond in a close, intimate but non-sexual relationship with an adult member of the same gender. This is supposed to substitute for the bond between the client and their same-sex parent which therapists allege did not properly form during childhood.
  • Others define the term reparative therapy more inclusively to be any formal attempt to change a person's sexual orientation -- typically from homosexual to heterosexual. It thus includes attempts by conservative Christian transformational ministries to use prayer, religious conversion, one-on-one and group counseling, etc. to change a person's sexual orientation.

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:

  • No research into the effectiveness of reparative therapy has ever been published in a peer-reviewed journal.
  • No accurate, longitudinal survey has been conducted to track the outcome of clients who have completed these therapies.

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.

Terminology used:

There are two "solitudes" within society dealing with homosexual issues:

  • Many conservative Christians individuals, therapists, ministries, and groups believe that homosexual behavior is abnormal, unnatural, chosen and sinful. They promote these therapies as helpful and safe techniques to "cure" homosexuality.
  • Essentially all gays, lesbians, mental health professionals, human sexuality researchers and religious liberals accept that a homosexual orientation is normal and natural for a minority of people. They believe that sexual orientation cannot be changed. They generally believe that both heterosexual and homosexual behavior can be either sinful or not, depending upon the circumstances. They regard these therapies to be non-productive and potentially dangerous.

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.

Common conservative
Christian usage
Common usage by other groups

Homosexuality is a behavior.

Homosexuality is an orientation

Homosexuality is what one does.

Homosexuality is what one is.

Sexual preference

Sexual orientation

"I am cured of homosexuality" OR

"I am an ex-gay."

"I was a sexually active homosexual; I am now homosexual who has chosen to be celibate."

"I was once in the homosexual lifestyle, but I am a heterosexual now."

"I was a bisexual who engaged in same-sex relationships. My orientation is still bisexual, but, I now choose to have only relationships with the opposite gender."

A person involved in the homosexual lifestyle

A person with a bisexual or homosexual orientation who is sexually active with members of the same gender.

History of these therapies:

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.

Is a change in sexual orientation possible?

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:

  • Society itself is an excellent testing laboratory for many social theories. There is a near consensus among mental health and human sexuality professionals that the incidence of homosexual orientation is fairly constant across societies and eras. However, if Ms. Moberly's theory on incompetent fathering is correct, then one would expect to observe two factors:
  • A drastic increase in homosexual orientation among children born shortly before World War II. British, Canadian and other forces were engaged in combat from 1939 to 1945; Americans were involved from 1941 to 1945. Many boys were deprived of their fathers during their formative years. The ultimate "distant" father is one who is fighting a war on another continent. We have been unable to find evidence of any such massive surge in the incidence of homosexual orientation among men who are now in their early 60's.
  • A much larger percentage of African-American children than white children are brought up in a single-parent family in which a resident father is absent. If Moberly's theory were correct, then one would expect a much higher incidence of homosexuality among African-American adult males than among the general population. Again, there appears to be no evidence that this is true.

Five other studies appear to indicate that sexual orientation (at least for males) is largely genetically determined:

  • Pedigree studies of the sexual orientation of the ancestors of gay males indicates that homosexual orientation is largely genetically determined and is passed by the mother via one or more genes on a specific chromosome.
  • Studies of identical twins who were separated at birth and raised in isolation from each other also show that homosexual orientation is primarily genetically determined.
  • Studies of twins who are born into and raised in the same family support the data from the previous study.
  • Studies of fingertip ridges shows a difference between homosexual and heterosexual males. (Fingerprints are fully formed by the 17th week of pregnancy).
  • Studies of index and ring fingers show that homosexuals and heterosexuals generally differ in the ratio of the length of their fingers. The relative size of a person's fingers is also determined before birth.

Acceptance of conversion therapies:

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:

  • The Bible condemns homosexual behavior
  • God hates homosexual acts.
  • God is involved in every life event, including fertilization of ova.

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:

  • God is omnipotent, and thus has the power to change a person's sexual orientation.
  • God has promised to answer the sincere prayers of born-again believers.

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:

  • incapable of changing a person's sexual orientation,
  • is contraindicated,
  • may be damaging to the client, and
  • has the potential to cause serious depression
  • triggers suicide in some cases.

Safety of these therapies:

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:

  • None are currently accepted by most therapists.
  • None were accepted by most therapists at any time in the past.
  • All are, or have been, widespread forms of therapy by a minority of therapists and clergy.
  • None have been meaningfully researched and shown to be helpful.

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:

  • Many bisexuals have been convinced, during therapy, to confine their relationships to the opposite gender. This is commonly referred to by therapists and Evangelical Christian ministries to gays and lesbians as "leaving the homosexual lifestyle," "changing their homosexuality," "becoming an ex-gay," "set free from the addiction of homosexuality and lesbianism," "seeking freedom from homosexuality," " a new kind of life," "being a recovered gay," "redeem their lives from the pit," etc. Note that their sexual orientation is unchanged; they simply decided to behave differently -- to only become romantically involved with members of the opposite gender.
  • Some homosexuals have been convinced during therapy to choose celibacy. Therapy promoters generally use the above terms to describe this group as well. Note that their sexual orientation is unchanged; they remain homosexual; they simply decided to not act on their sexual longings -- to not have a sexual partner, and to accept a life of loneliness.
  • Some homosexuals have completed therapy in a temporary euphoria. They believe that they have changed their sexual orientation. Some are even able to engage in sexual intercourse with members of the opposite gender, by closing their eyes and fantasizing that they are actually making love to a person of the same sex. The belief that they are now heterosexual always, or almost always, fades with time.
  • Some have entered therapy with great anticipation that they will be able to change their sexual orientation.

When it proves unsuccessful:

  • Many become severely depressed. Some of these have attempted or actually committed suicide.
  • Some have the opposite reaction. They achieve greater self-esteem. They finally realize that they have exhausted all their options; their homosexual orientation cannot be changed. They accept themselves for what they are, and pursue gay/lesbian relationship(s) without guilt.

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.

Related essays


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 online book store

2. Jeffry Ford, "What is Reparative Therapy?," at:

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 online book store


Policy Statements Denouncing Reparative Therapy

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:

Fighting right wing lies and the "Ex-Gay" Fraud


  • Roundup: Ex-Gay Starbucks Card / Antiagenda Agenda / Ex-Straight?
  • Ex-Gay Survivor, Allies Vigil outside Exodus Conference
  • Exodus Ex-Gay Supporter of Kern Defames Gays, Divides Families to ‘Save’ Them
  • Ex-Gay Advocate Joins Fray over Md. Transgender Antidiscrimination Bill
  • PFOX Lobs Ex-Gay Race-Card at Transgender Americans
  • Virginity Programs Invade Ivy League
  • Ex-Gays’ Not-So-Golden Rule for Stopping Bullies
  • Exodus President’s Interview with ‘New Man’ Avoids Obvious Questions


  • TWO Launches Dynamic Multi-Media Website Refuting the ‘Ex-Gay’ Myth
  • TWO Unveils Four Original Videos Leading Up To March Launch of Vibrant and Informative Website
  • TWO Introduces Seven New Videos Leading Up To March Launch of Dynamic Website


  • Virginity Programs Invade Ivy League
  • APA ‘Ex-Gay’ Panel: ‘A Really Bad Idea
  • ‘Conversion Therapy’ is Harmful And Damages Clients


Psychologists to review stance on gays

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

Gay Conversion Therapy Law Temporarily Blocked By Federal Judge

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.

Gov. Shumlin Signs Law to Ban Conversion Therapy in Vermont

At a time when some states are working to erode hard-fought advances in civil rights for the LGBT community, Gov. Peter Shumlin today signed a law to advance them in Vermont by banning the dangerous and discredited practice of conversion therapy. The new law bans the practice of seeking to change a minor's sexual orientation or gender identity in the State of 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, 2016.

Youth Mental Health Preservation Act Introduced in Missouri for First Time

For the first time in Missouri, HB 2141, focused on banning so-called “conversion therapy” has been filed by Rep. Tracy McCreery. The Youth Mental Health Preservation Act states that "state licensed professionals cannot engage in any form of conversion therapy of a minor.”

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.



In need of help? Please contact the Trevor Project. Lastly, do you have a story to share? Please contact us at 314-862-4900.

Washington state passes ban on gay ‘cure’ therapy for minors

A bill to ban gay ‘cure’ therapy on minors has been approved by lawmakers in Washington state.

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 state’s 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 state’s Democratic majority in voting for the ban.

The bill will now go back to the Senate for concurrence heading to the desk of the state’s 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 state’s 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.”

My daughter is lesbian. She is also the light of my life...If society has
some false notions about her, that is all the more reason she
needs and deserve my support. - R. Bernstein

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