Gay Cure?


| 7 Comments

A new law has been born in California and is set to be official January 1st, 2013. The law forbids any type of therapy aimed to change the sexual orientation of minors who claim they are gay. It was a college student who filed this lawsuit against California. He says he used to be homosexual but became attracted to the opposite sex after such therapy. "Conversion therapy", "reparative therapy", or "sexual orientation change efforts" are seen as "psychological child abuse". Well, in California at least.

DISCLAIMER: I am not gay. I am not against the gay community. This blog post is strictly based on facts about a current issue and study of gay therapy.

gay pride.jpg

Where to begin, as if the whole gay/lesbian issue wasn't controversial enough, now there's talk of "cures"? First of all, this would have to mean being gay is a disease, which is the first of many flaws with this treatment. Conversion therapy defined is exactly how it sounds, the transformation of homosexuals to heterosexuals. The main recent techniques used in this therapy are ex-gay ministries, psychoanalysis, and reparative therapy.

·      Ex-Gay Ministry- encouragement of heterosexual relationships

·      Psychoanalysis- long-term therapy, looks into unconscious childhood conflicts and attempt to resolve them

·      Reparative Therapy- supports psychoanalysis theory, follows and enforces ten steps to become heterosexual 

If these "cures" actually work is still unclear, but it must've worked on one man- the man fighting to outlaw these practices in California. The man claims he was successfully converted, so what could possibly be wrong? After some further research, it is easy to realize the danger of these practices. Many who have undergone the therapy report increased anxiety, depression, and even thoughts of suicide.

This goes along with what we have been discussing in class about doctors who feel they are always doing what is best. These particular doctors feel they can change the sexual orientation of a human, as if it is a "mental disease".  Is this ethical? Is it worth the serious side effects? Seriously, is being gay a "disease"?

7 Comments

This issue is something I feel very strongly about. While I am not gay, I am a supporter of the gay community and against any type of "conversion therapy". Personally I do not believe being gay is a choice. Specially growing up in our world where there is so much discrimination and for some, hatred, towards the gay community, why would they "choose" to be the victim of all of that. I also agree with your point when you say that if it can be "cured" that must mean being homosexuality is a disease. Sexual orientation is not a disease, you cant help who you have an attraction for and that is that. I feel as though several years from now, we will look back on this time period and think how ridiculous some of the things we said about homosexuals were, just as we look back and realize how ridiculous the racism that many americans felt several years before now.

This blog made me think about how science has a role in the treatment of homosexuality. Science has already shown that homosexuality exists in nature and that homosexuality could have genetic origins . I wonder how "cures" for homosexuality will develop as we get closer to identifying the roots of it. Do you think it will become like Down's Syndrome, where a mother can test their baby for it beforehand and choose to abort it if it's undesirable? Or will we identify the biological benefits and choose to limit anti-homosexual therapy even more?

It is amazing how people are so willing to waste there efforts on such a ridiculous cause. Instead of dedicated resources to combatting serious ailments, we are trying to change how people are. The people seeking these "treatments" must have serious self-esteem problems. I wonder if this drive to change themselves is caused by those affected thinking that they don't belong or societal pressures thinking that they need to fit in. I'm personally curious how this "treatment" can even be seen as a science. Are there actual doctors who are promoting it or is it mainly frauds trying to prey on a questioning youth's confidence in order to make a dollar?

This is a very controversial and interesting topic and I am very happy to see a blog about it. It's giving out blogs a more current look at science instead of age old questions that a lot of us blog about.
I found it seriously disturbing to find an article that a man who claimed the gay cure therapy worked on him is suing the state of California saying that the new state law "infringes on their civil rights".
Although I do believe you should be allowed to practice any time of profession you want, if it is harming others to the point of depression and suicide it should be against the law.
http://www.cnn.com/2012/10/04/us/california-gay-therapy/index.html Read the story here!

It is in no way ethical and it shocks me that this type of therapy was ever permitted in the first place. It is no wonder those people that go through this type of therapy experience greater anxiety and depression. It is forcing them to be someone they are just simply not. If it was a choice, something that could be controlled or changed, do you really think those people identifying as gay or lesbian would choose to adopt a lifestyle that is so controversial in our society?

I'm glad you brought up the dangers of this sort of therapy in your blog post. Not only is it ridiculous to consider that there are people who still are so closed minded about homosexuality, but the fact that there is "therapy" to convert people from gay to straight is absurd. You're correct in saying that this would have to mean there is something wrong with being gay in the first place. This sort of therapy could have detrimental effects on whoever is receiving it. This article talks about how forcing children to do this sort of therapy causes all sorts of psychological problems. Sure the parents may think they're doing whats "best" for their child, but the effects stated in this article ask the question, at what cost?

I think it is kind of absurd to believe that therapy can actually change a person's lifestyle, but if it worked for this man, maybe there is some truth to it. Although I am not gay, I do have a few gay friends, and the topic of "How does one know they are gay?" has come up in discussion a few times. The answer I got was there is no real answer. It is not something that is decided for them, it is not something you can see before anyone else. I think when you are gay, you just know. You may not exactly reveal this to the outside world, but you yourself are quite aware of it. That is why I think it is kind of crazy to think that someone else can "chase the gay out of you." It may not be in your DNA or surgically removable, but I don't think one can extract homosexuality from another. Additionally, we are not quite fully aware of all the possible outcomes of this type of therapy. Other kinds of therapy come with all different kinds of side effects, including relapse. Who's to say the same thing can't happen here? Further, why would the man who received these treatments be suing to have them outlawed? Perhaps he has suffered some kind of distress as a result, which is just indication that these therapies need to be unlawful.

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