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Dr. Throckmorton Pleased with APA Report

Timothy Kincaid

August 5th, 2009

Dr. Warren Throckmorton was, at one time, a supporter of efforts to revise one’s sexual orientation. He even produced a video, I Do Exist, which presented the testimonies of some people who claimed to have changed their sexual orientation.

Since that time at least one testimonial came to understand his sexuality in a light different than was presented on the video. And, as time passed, so did Dr. Throckmorton.

I have witnessed an evolution in his thinking to where I now think it is now accurate to say that Dr. Throckmorton, though still religiously conservative and not inclined to find same-sex behavior to be pleasing to God, no longer believes that efforts to change the sexual attractions of same-sex attracted men are likely to be effective. He is particularly critical of “reparative therapy” – efforts to become heterosexual by “repairing” the damage done by a distant father and smothing mother – the pet theory of NARTH and others in the ex-gay movement.

Instead, Dr. Throckmorton is a proponant of Sexual Identity Therapy, a therapy that “seeks to aid people in conflict over sexual identity to integrate and live out a valued sexual identity.” Throckmorton seeks to support those whose religious beliefs and values are not consistent with accepting the identity, or sexual expression of a gay person – yet without trying to change them into an opposite-sex attracted person.

Throckmorton finds much within the APA Report to applaud. He praises the rigor, honesty, and nuance of the report along with the APA’s recognition that a client’s own religious can impact psychotherapy. Check out his response here.

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Quo
August 5th, 2009 | LINK

Dr. Warren Throckmorton is someone for whom, for a variety of reasons, I have considerable distaste. I question how honest a commentator he is on scientific issues involving homosexuality (and in regard to other matters), and I find his personal position on homosexuality to be wishy-washy. Frankly, there is more to admire in Nicolosi’s work.

Christopher Waldrop
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Yes, Quo, since Dr. Throckmorton prefers to look at facts instead of sticking to what he’d like to be true, I can see why you would have a problem with his work. Could you please explain why your beliefs and value judgments are superior?

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

That Throckmoron is someone who looks at facts rather than simply sticks to what he wants to be true is certainly how he likes to portray himself, but I do not find it to be true.

Look at something like this, for instance: http://wthrockmorton.com/reparative-therapy-information/

There Throckmorton reviews Fisher and Greenberg’s work (which is used by Nicolosi), commenting that “Greenberg and Fisher dismiss one corner of the classic triadic model” (the part about mothers). That is not correct, however. What Fisher and Greenberg actually write in the book under review is that the evidence is inconsistent where the influence of mothers on the development of homosexuality was concerned; they do not say that it disproves it, which is how Throckmorton makes it sound.

Throckmorton also tries to cast doubt on the idea that a negative relationship with the father influences the development of homosexuality, but the arguments he uses are naive. For instance he writes, “the father-son relationship problems could have derived from the fact that the son disclosed homosexuality. Also, possible is the fact that the father perceived some difference in the son (related to developing homosexuality) which led to a rocky relationship.”

Those would be convincing arguments against the negative-father theory only if you are willing to believe that such alternative explanations could be true in all cases where a father has a bad relationship with a son who turns out to be homosexual. Obviously they cannot be. Not all fathers in such cases would find out that their sons are homosexual, and neither would they necessarily detect some difference in their sons that would alienate them from them. Neither of Throckmorton’s alternative explanations is true in my case, for instance, so I am left having to conclude that Nicolosi’s theory is basically correct.

If Throckmorton makes such weak arguments, it is reasonable to conclude that he simply doesn’t like Nicolosi’s theories on homosexuality and therefore wants them to be wrong. Maybe he thinks it is easier on parents that way.

Jason D
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

I have a great relationship with my Dad, so Neither Throckmorton nor Nicolosi are right about me.

Priya Lynn
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Throckmorton also tries to cast doubt on the idea that a negative relationship with the father influences the development of homosexuality, but the arguments he uses are naive. For instance he writes, “the father-son relationship problems could have derived from the fact that the son disclosed homosexuality. Also, possible is the fact that the father perceived some difference in the son (related to developing homosexuality) which led to a rocky relationship.”

Those would be convincing arguments against the negative-father theory only if you are willing to believe that such alternative explanations could be true in all cases where a father has a bad relationship with a son who turns out to be homosexual. Obviously they cannot be.

That explanation may not be true for all cases, but it is certainly possible, if not likely that it is true for the vast majority of cases. It is you who is naive if you don’t think this is likely because it clearly is. It is also likely that in some cases a father has a negative relationship with a son and it has nothing to do with his gayness and does not have any influence on his orientation.

Neither of Throckmorton’s alternative explanations is true in my case, for instance, so I am left having to conclude that Nicolosi’s theory is basically correct.

You are not left “having” to draw that conclusion by any stretch of the imagination, you just prefer to. It strikes me as unlikely that you would know what led to the type of relationship you had with your father and in any event drawing the conclusion that Nicolosi’s theory is correct from one anecdote isn’t what any scientist would consider reasonable evidence, – just because one gay person had a negative relationship with their father doesn’t remotely even begin to prove that that relationship caused their gayness.

Priya Lynn
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Oops, screwed up my blockquotes, that second paragraph was Quo’s comment, not mine.

Burr
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Same here.. And no my mom was domineering, treating me like a girl or otherwise incapable kid.

All those BS stereotypes do not fit me one bit.

Sorry but you’re just dead wrong and a sad little man, Quo.

Burr
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Er.. no my mom was NOT..

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

I have no idea what you’re basing the conclusion that one explanation is more likely than another on. In any case, if there’s a statistically significant relationship (which is what Fisher and Greenberg found, after reviewing numerous studies) it’s not likely to be coincidence. Also, I think that I have a pretty good idea of what led to my relationship with my father, having been there at the time.

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Burr,

It’s called a Freudian slip. How appropriate.

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Here’s another example of how misleading Throckmorton’s commentary on this issue is. He writes,

“Fisher and Greenberg suggest that the evidence they reviewed supported a correlation between negative fathering and adult homosexuality but not the Oedipal drama surrounding mother. In addition to this limitation of psychoanalytic theory, there is no need to limit theorizing to thinking that poor fathering causes homosexual attractions in some general way for all same-sex attracted men.”

(http://wthrockmorton.com/2007/11/28/psychoanalytic-theory-and-the-etiology-of-homosexuality-what-does-research-say/)

This quote suggests that Throckmorton thinks that all psychoanalysts explain homosexuality in terms of the Oedipus complex. That’s quite wrong. Not all versions of psychoanalytic theory emphasise Oedipal factors in the development of homosexuality. Others (Edmund Bergler, for example) considered the pre-Oedipal relationship with the mother to be decisive, and dismissed the importance of the Oedipus complex. Someone even moderately well informed about the history of psychoanalytic theorising about homosexuality would know this.

Burr
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Or it was a typo, but sure, keep grasping at your pseudoscientific psychobabble straws!

Timothy Kincaid
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

In any case, if there’s a statistically significant relationship (which is what Fisher and Greenberg found, after reviewing numerous studies) it’s not likely to be coincidence.

Correlation does not indicate causation.

Neither of Throckmorton’s alternative explanations is true in my case, for instance, so I am left having to conclude that Nicolosi’s theory is basically correct.

Also, I think that I have a pretty good idea of what led to my relationship with my father, having been there at the time.

Quo,

If I understand you correctly, you select to believe Joe Nicolosi’s hypotheses about the causation of homosexuality – at least in your circumstances. In other words, you believe that your father’s inadequate parenting when you were three years old resulted in a lack of bonding, male imaging, and eventual sexual attraction towards the opposite sex.

Additionally, you were not gender atypical or engage in any behaviors or interests that were more typical to girls. Nor did you give your father any indication that you might be homosexually inclined at any point prior to his bad parenting. And you recall all of this even though it took place before you were three.

Is that a fair assessment of your statements?

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Timothy,

Where did the three years old part come from? If there is a part of Nicolosi’s work where he talks about three years old being the crucial period, then I may have missed it. Actually Nicolosi states that “the crucial period is from one and a half to three years old.” (A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality, p. 29)

I had a distant relationship with my father during my entire childhood, and I believe that was an important factor (along with my being unathletic, ill, physically weak, and so on). Whether the early period that Nicolosi talks about is crucial or not, I do not claim to know. (I said that Nicolosi was basically right, not that I necessarily agreed with every detail of what he said).

While I am not sure that I remember what was going on when I was three all that well, I can conclude with some confidence that I never told my father that I was homosexually-inclined during that period, as this is not something that children aged one to three are noted for doing. Indeed, most children of that age wouldn’t have the slightest idea what homosexuality was.

Priya Lynn
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Quo, there is no evidence to suggest that distant fathers caused sons gayness instead of sons’ gayness causing distant fathers. A wide range of studies have suggested that biology plays a major factor in deciding a person’s sexual orientation. Any one of these studies may not make a convincing case by themselves but taken as a whole it is very tough to argue convincingly that parental nurture is a primary factor in determining anyone’s sexual orientation. There are many well documented examples of fathers being absent, such as WWII and the fatherlessness of black children and yet no evidence that this has ever raised the incidence of gayness which would have to be the case if there was any truth to your fantasy.

Its been well documented that most people can pick out a gay person from their mannerisms, walk, talk, etc. Parents frequently can tell their male children are effeminate long before the children themselves realize they are gay. Further fathers with anti-gay attitudes are common and were even more so when you were a child. What you’re suggesting is that is that its typically not the case that anti-gay fathers recognize their sons are effeminate at a young age and are turned off by this. You laughably claim that belief in such a likely scenario is naive – it is you who is naive, or rather blinded by your aching desire to believe you were made the way you are and that you can unmake the way you are.
And all this despite your utter failure to change your orientation after…how many years is it? If there was any substantive truth to the distant father theory and Narth’s ideas you would have succeeded in changing. You haven’t because there is no truth to it.

Priya Lynn
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Quo said “Where did the three years old part come from? If there is a part of Nicolosi’s work where he talks about three years old being the crucial period, then I may have missed it. Actually Nicolosi states that “the crucial period is from one and a half to three years old.”.”.

LOL, Quo, do you even think about what you say?! You’re nitpicking over nothing. And you certainly don’t need to have told your father you’re gay for him to have suspected it.

Timothy Kincaid
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Quo,

I think you misunderstand Dr. Throckmorton.

He relies on studies that show that the strongest indication of future homosexuality is gender nonconformity. He speculates that it is this gender non-conformity that establishes distance in fathers, rather than the other way around.

You state that this could not be true in your case. But then you reveal that you were “unathletic, ill, physically weak, and so on.”

Do you not think that it might be possible that your lack of athleticism and other ‘hardy boy’ characteristics led to an estrangement with your father? That he wasn’t interested in a ‘girly boy’?

If so, this would fit with the hypothesis that homosexual precursors can at times lead to paternal distance and thus be a good explanation for the correllation.

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

You have made these and other claims on other forums. We have discussed this before, and frankly, having seen what a poor job you have done of arguing your position in the past, I’m not going to try to rebut you. You always manage to find an easy, lame way of dismissing anything you don’t like, and your comments don’t warrant a response.

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Timothy,

Throckmorton can speculate “that it is this gender non-conformity that establishes distance in fathers, rather than the other way around” all he likes, but anyone who takes the trouble to think about it carefully should realize that the idea that things always work that way is totally implausible. No one can reasonably conclude that sons who become gay always make their fathers distant rather than the other way around. People who do conclude that either haven’t thought about it properly or are simply looking for an excuse to dismiss a theory they don’t like.

As for my father, he was self-employed and had little time for me, and so no, I don’t think that my lack of athleticism lead to his distancing himself from me. He would have been distant from me no matter what I was like, and he wasn’t the sort of man who particularly cared about his son being athletic or not. My lack of physical strength and health as a boy was one more factor contributing to my homosexuality. It helped to make me crave masculinity, a craving that ultimately became sexual in nature, just like Nicolosi says.

Quo
August 6th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

Actually, since you’ve hauled out that much repeated argument about blacks again, I will say something about it. It happens that Lionel Ovesey, one of the most influential psychoanalytic theorists about homosexuality, wrote about black personality and social life in America with Abram Kardiner. Their book “The Mark of Oppression: A Psychosocial Study of the American Negro” was published in 1951, almost two decades before Ovesey’s “Homosexuality and Pseudohomosexuality” was published in 1969.

Try reading it. It says plenty about homosexuality, which occurs very frequently in the case studies of “negroes” Ovesey wrote. The very first personality study in that book, of the pseudonymous patient “S.C.”, deals with homosexuality. Ovesey’s notion of “pseudohomosexuality” is present already in that study, long before he later popularized it in papers and books specifically about homosexuality. That theory was probably originally based on his experience with black patients. Now what does that suggest about the argument that the experiences of blacks discredit psychoanalytic theories about homosexuality? I suspect somehow that Dr. Ovesey wouldn’t be very moved by your argument.

grantdale
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

… just like Nicolosi says.

Quo, are you sure it isn’t because your planets were out of alignment?

Have you consulted an astrologist about this?

(And I mean one of those scientific, medical, qualified astrologists — not just anyone.)

Apparently LOTS of gay men are born with Mars in ascent. Or was it Uranus rising. Eh, something like that in any case. Big roundish things, you get the idea.

So that makes astrology an equally reasonable explanation. Yep. Not sure what you’d do about fixing it though… however moving a planet or two is about on par with reparatively therapacising someone’s sexual orientation, so that shouldn’t be at all daunting to you.

Quo
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

grantdale,

Your flippant response is one more example of how the pro-gay commentators here tend to dismiss anything they don’t like without serious argument.

grantdale
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Quo,

Your non-response will mean, of course, that you haven’t actually consulted an astrologist.

Because you have not, one can only assume that deep down inside you really don’t want to be changed.

Any wonder you’re still gay. It’s the same old story about lack of effort on your part. Sheesh.

But, I guess, some need a craven idol to survive the trials of life and I’m happy in a way that you seem to have found yours in the earthly form of Joe Nicolosi. I still think you’re wasting an opportunity by refusing to consult an astrologist. It’s your life. Your still-am-gay life.

(If you ever think of a serious argument that can be had about Nicolosi, let us know. Actually, tell what it would be too.)

William
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

“I had a distant relationship with my father during my entire childhood, and I believe that was an important factor (along with my being unathletic, ill, physically weak, and so on).”

“My lack of physical strength and health as a boy was one more factor contributing to my homosexuality. It helped to make me crave masculinity, a craving that ultimately became sexual in nature, just like Nicolosi says.”

O.K., Quo, the rest of us may not believe this explanation for your homosexuality, but you do. Perhaps you’re right – who knows? So for present purposes let’s take it as a working hypothesis that you ARE right after all.

Now what? This explanation clearly isn’t going to change your sexual orientation. Even if it’s correct, it’s all been done now, and you can’t go back into the past and undo it.

Here’s some very sound advice from Weinberg and Williams:

“The homosexual should try to rid himself of notions that homosexuality is ‘sick’ and that he would necessarily be better off if he were heterosexual. If he seeks counselling, he should try to avoid practitioners who subscribe to these views.”
MARTIN S. WEINBERG & COLIN J. WILLIAMS, Male Homosexuals: Their Problems and Adaptations (1974)

A sexual need has been created, and you won’t abolish it either by denying it or by formulating explanations for it, even if those explanations are correct. So do the sensible thing and fulfil it. Just go along with the flow, mate.

Warren Throckmorton
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Quo’s view of science:

“It happened to me therefore it is so for all.”

Let’s all now go and do science…

Alex
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Well said, William. I often wonder what people like Quo hope to accomplish by analyzing their childhood and trying to figure out “where it all went wrong.” What’s done is done. Life is too short to worry about things you can’t change.

Priya Lynn
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Quo said “No one can reasonably conclude that sons who become gay always make their fathers distant rather than the other way around.”.

You have utterly failed to explain how it is not reasonable that gay sons make some fathers distant. Your repeated unsupported assertion does not make it so. Many fathers, particularly at the time when you were a child, are anti-gay, most people can pick out a gay child from their mannerisms, speech, interests, etc. It naturally follows that gay sons make some fathers distant. On the other hand there is no research whatsoever that suggests distant fathers causes gayness, in fact the research suggests the opposite, that biological factors are predominant.

Quo said “Actually, since you’ve hauled out that much repeated argument about blacks again, I will say something about it. Blah, blah blah, blah blah, blah blah blah blah.”.

Quo you strung a bunch of irrelvant words together that did nothing to refute the fact that despite many episodes of distant fathers there is no evidence whatsoever that this causes a spike in the number of gay sons. You read much but understand little.

Priya Lynn
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Quo said “As for my father, he was self-employed and had little time for me, and so no, I don’t think that my lack of athleticism lead to his distancing himself from me.”.

You don’t think, but you don’t know for sure. Just because a father is self-employed doesn’t mean he’ll be distant from his son, many busy fathers make time for and cherish their sons. There had to be a reason why your father was distant and being self-employed doesn’t cut it – more likely he saw you as effeminate and was turned off.

I’m a transexual woman, I had a poor relationship with my father as well. He was also self-employed. When I was around 8 he wanted me to help him change oil in his car and I didn’t want to go. He yelled at my mother “He’s going to turn into a god-damn homosexual”. Clearly my father sensed my femininity and rejected me for it. Now by your logic its clear and no one can reasonably conclude that distant fathers make sons gay rather than sons who are gay make their fathers distant.

William
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

What I can’t help wondering – although, of course, it’s his problem, not mine – is this: how many years of Quo’s life has this frigging around already taken up, and how many more years will it consume? It seems to me rather like putting all your financial affairs on hold while you wait for all your numbers to come up in the National Lottery.

As you so rightly say, Alex, life is too short to worry about things you can’t change. Life also goes fast; and the older you get, the faster it goes. “À la recherche du temps perdu” may make an interesting title for a novel, but there’s no way of clawing back wasted years.

Priya Lynn
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

So true William, I wasted 30 years trying to suppress who I was, it cost me my happiness, sense of security, and freedom from anxiety. When I finally relaxed and accepted who I was in my early 40’s things gradually started to improve. Now I have the most wonderful man in the world in my life and am extremely happy. My only regret is all those years I wasted trying to be someone I wasn’t to please people who didn’t matter.

Jason D
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

…was one more factor contributing to my homosexuality. It helped to make me crave masculinity, a craving that ultimately became sexual in nature, just like Nicolosi says.

No one has yet to explain “how” a craving becomes sexual. That’s the giant, gaping hole in this theory. It’s the underpants gnomes from south park. I’ve craved a lot of things over the years, and none of those gravings have become sexual. I had a drinking problem, but I never craved alcohol during sex, or craved having sex with alcohol.

I fail to see how a craving for being masculine leads to a sexual desire for other men, especially ones who may not be themselves masculine. That would indicate that deep down, straight men all want to be women. If quo and nicolosi are right, then there is no homosexuality, no bisexuality, and no heterosexuality — it’s all just a bunch of sexual fetishes.

I can see how a child might be interested in masculinty and feel left out, and desire interaction with men and or his father’s approval— but that has little to nothing to do with homosexuality. It’s a separate issue, one that some gay men have — but some straight men, do, too. When I was in counseling for depression, a therapist reminded me that most people do NOT fall in line with the stereotypes for their gender, and A LOT of people feel uncomfortable about this. That’s why some men start fights for no reason — that’s why some girls throw up their entire dinner — to prove to themselves that they are their gender. They feel “wrong” and they do things to make themselves feel “right”.

I wasn’t entirely honest when I said I have a great relationship with my father. I sometimes forget that when I was growing up, we didn’t have a great relationship. In fact, Coming Out to my Dad, and being patient with him eventually is what brought us together. So why am I still gay, now that Dad and I have made up and are cool? In fact, nowadays I feel more at home with myself and more masculine than ever in my life. Not that I care that much anymore, but I do feel that way. I have several straight male friends, I get a lot of male bonding nowadays, shouldn’t all my gayness be cured by now? If homosexuality is caused by a deficit of male bonding, and is changeable, shouldn’t a surplus of male bonding reduce or elliminate homosexual thoughts and feelings? That’s the way it is with most things that are reversable, if you’re hungry all the time because you don’t eat a lot of food, if you start eating on a regular basis you stop being hungry. Given that thought, homosexuality should actually be the cure. We’re not all feminine men, eventually spending enough time with other men (even gay men) should make homosexuality self-correcting. But it’s not. Which would indicate to me, that IF homosexuality is caused by a deficit in male bonding, and a surplus of male bonding doesn’t get rid of it — then it’s permanent.

William
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

A brilliant analysis of the flaws in Nicolosi’s theory, Jason D. Thank you.

Quo
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Warren,

No that’s not my view of science. I thought I was rather careful to say that I felt that this explanation of homosexuality was true of me but not necessarily always true. Maybe you’re annoyed that I exposed the fact that your arguments against the reparative theory are lacking and that you aren’t that well informed about psychoanalysis?

Quo
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

Will you ever tire of asserting that I’m wrong without argument? Why it’s so important for you to announce that I’m wrong in anything I may say, and base that only on your say so, I cannot guess.

Warren Throckmorton
August 7th, 2009 | LINK

Quo – Why don’t you use your real name?

You need to read Fisher and Greenberg. They say about the maternal influence:

The post-1977 material we have reviewed concerning male homosexuality has narrowed the apparent support for Freud’s formulation in this area. Previously, we regarded the empirical data to be congruent with with Freud’s theory that male homosexuality derives from too much closeness to mother and a distant negative relationship with father. As noted, the increased pool of data available reinforces the concept of the negative father but fails to support the idea of the overly close, seductive mother…So we are left with only one of the major elements in Freud’s original formula concerning the parental vectors that are involved in moving a male child toward homosexuality. This reduction in confirmed points on the graph makes it all too easy to conjure up alternative theories of homosexuality that could incorporate the “negative father” data…There would be no need to appeal to the Oedipal image of a son competing with his father for mother’s love.

F&G do discount the maternal corner of the triad.

RE: the reparative theory. Nicolosi says if you do not traumatize a child you will get a heterosexual. A homosexual derives from a trauma with the same-sex parent. These are statements can be easily falsified. Produce a homosexual without trauma and the deed is done. I have not written that the theory is wrong in every case. It may be correct in some unknown number of cases. However, it is clear that it is not true in every or even most cases, if the research comparing gays and straights is to be believed.

Quo
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

Warren,

Regarding the reasons why I don’t use my real name, I find that a rather eyebrow-raising question coming from you, given that you have certainly shown that you appreciate the virtues of online anonymity, but I guess I shouldn’t say any more about that.

About Fisher and Greenberg, that really doesn’t contradict what I said, when you place it in context. What they mean when they say that the evidence “fails to support the idea of the overly close, seductive mother” is that the evidence doesn’t clearly support the idea, but as the studies have produced inconsistent results, it doesn’t really refute it either.

In any case, if you want to criticise psychoanalytic theories of homosexuality, it is best to be aware of such elementary facts as that not all psychoanalysts accept an Oedipal eitology. Bergler (to give just one example) dismissed it more than fifty years ago, so if Fisher and Greenberg are right and the Oedipus complex does not play a key role in the development of homosexuality, that wouldn’t necessarily be a massive challenge to the psychoanalytic approach, as it would simply confirm what one group of analysts have been saying for more than half a century.

Regarding Nicolosi, you aren’t presenting his views fairly. He’s careful to note in A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality (p. 17) that there is no one method of child-rearing that will automatically guarantee that the child will not become homosexual.

Burr
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

So if testing of a drug fails to support it actually working, but doesn’t refute it either, but also has several very well documented adverse side effects including death, a doctor should keep prescribing it?

Funny logic that..

Priya Lynn
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

Quo said “Priya will you ever tire of asserting that I’m wrong without argument?”.

What I’ve done Quo, is point out that you yourself have no rationale for the conclusions you make. Will you ever tire of saying “No one can reasonably conclude that sons who become gay always make their fathers distant rather than the other way around.” without any logic as to why that would be true?

As to your bit on the authors of the book talking about black gayness your argument there was essentially “some guys wrote a book and talked about gayness in blacks. They didn’t say anything about distant fathers causing gay sons therefore I’m right and distant fathers cause gay sons.”.

Quo, I don’t need an argument to point out that you yourself have provided none for the points you adamantly claim are the truth.

Priya Lynn
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

I should add Quo, that the argument for gay sons causing distant fathers is most people can pick out a gay child by their mannerisms, speech, and interests, many fathers, particularly from when you were a child were anti-gay, anti-gay people reject gays. This makes obvious sense whereas your conclusion does not and its you who’ve asserted without argument that this likely scenario is wrong.

Christopher Waldrop
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

Quo, you have a problem distinguishing facts and opinions. Just because you find Dr. Throckmorton’s work “wishy-washy” doesn’t invalidate his claims. After all, he’s looked at the evidence and drawn conclusions based on the evidence, whereas you seem to be looking primarily at yourself as a case study and drawing conclusions you would like to be true.

I suppose, though, that none of this should be surprising, since you’ve admitted that your reason for coming here is your own insecurity, which you seem to think you can alleviate only by attacking others.

Ben in Oakland
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

“Regarding Nicolosi, you aren’t presenting his views fairly. He’s careful to note in A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality (p. 17) that there is no one method of child-rearing that will automatically guarantee that the child will not become homosexual.”

Mr. Rather Large Truck, meet a rather large hold you can drive through.

“In any case, if you want to criticise psychoanalytic theories of homosexuality, it is best to be aware of such elementary facts as that not all psychoanalysts accept an Oedipal eitology. Bergler (to give just one example) dismissed it more than fifty years ago, ”

Edmund bergler? that idiot? He’s just like your MR. Nicolosi– he earned his money attacking gay people and fixing people whom he could never prove he fixed. As Mark Twain once obserbved in Puddin’head wilson: “Tell me where a man gets his corn pone, and i’ll tell you what his ‘pinions is.”

Consider this, quo. I KNEW I was agy when I was three years old, long before i knew what it meant, long before I knew about sex. A chance mention of the word homosexual sent me to a dictionary when I was 11, and I finally could say, “Oh, that’s what that is.”

I was raised by my biological family. My family was (and is) not just a little bit strange– ironically, I think I am the only one of four children that did not come out damaged. My Dad was OK– a good man with strong values and a good mind. He raised me properly, and I think I turned out well. But something was missing with him– I suspect it was what I call the gay Oedipus thing. My Dad recognized that I was very different from him (or entirely too similar to–take your pick), and so we were perhaps not as close as we could have been, though we certainly had a decent relationship.

When I was 13, I met the boy who became my best friend, and his family became my family. I would escape there every weekend that I could. What a world of difference in how I was perceived and treated! John’s father, Dick, became a second father to me, in many ways, the father I always wanted, though he was far crazier in a lot of ways than my own father. His wife, Virginia, similarly became the mother I always wanted– loving and kind and supportive, not even just a little bit crazy, unlike my mother. They were the ones who showed up for my senior year choral concert– my own parents didn’t like classical music, and couldn’t be bothered. In all ways, Dick and Virginia were great parents to me, as they were with their own children.

Priya Lynn
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

Christopher said

Quo, you have a problem distinguishing facts and opinions. Just because you find Dr. Throckmorton’s work “wishy-washy” doesn’t invalidate his claims. After all, he’s looked at the evidence and drawn conclusions based on the evidence, whereas you seem to be looking primarily at yourself as a case study and drawing conclusions you would like to be true.

Another thing for Quo to think about is that Mr. Throckmorton came from an anti-gay religious position that was wholeheartedly behind the right wing talking points that Quo has swallowed. He didn’t change his position lightly, a person like him must be honestly convinced the distant father theory is wanting or he’d have never overcome his religious predilictions towards these theories. The idea that Mr. Throckmorton is being wishy washy, or ideological about this position of his simply isn’t credible.

Jason D
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

“So if testing of a drug fails to support it actually working, but doesn’t refute it either, but also has several very well documented adverse side effects including death, a doctor should keep prescribing it?

Funny logic that..”

Agreed!
This is the equivalent of the placebo group going “I don’t care if it’s just a sugar pill — it made me feel like my cancer is going away! Why can’t there be room for this sugar pill, too?!”

Because it’s not a doctors domain to humor people’s wild delusions, especially ones that have been proven to be an ineffective waste of time at best and harmful at worst.

Quo
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

You wrote, “What I’ve done Quo, is point out that you yourself have no rationale for the conclusions you make.”

Nope. As usual, when confronted with facts and/or arguments not supporting your point of view, you have dismissed them out of hand. I explained my logic clearly enough, but you didn’t like it, so of course, to you, I was wrong.

Regarding the book I mentioned, you have missed my point completely. It was that the argument that theories about how male homosexuality is caused to a poor relationship with the father are discredited because they supposedly do not fit African Americans doesn’t stand up well when you consider that one of the best-known proponent of those theories had extensive experience with blacks, and in fact probably based his theories about homosexuality originally on his experience with black patients.

Quo
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

“I should add Quo, that the argument for gay sons causing distant fathers is most people can pick out a gay child by their mannerisms, speech, and interests, many fathers, particularly from when you were a child were anti-gay, anti-gay people reject gays. This makes obvious sense whereas your conclusion does not and its you who’ve asserted without argument that this likely scenario is wrong.”

Your argument doesn’t make obvious sense. In fact it’s obviously wrong, and I know that from personal experience. I explained my argument carefully, and unsurprisingly you rejected it because you don’t like it. Although I wasn’t particularly masculine, there was nothing “gay” about my mannerisms as a child.

Quo
August 8th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

Let’s consider one of your “arguments”.

You wrote, “There had to be a reason why your father was distant and being self-employed doesn’t cut it – more likely he saw you as effeminate and was turned off.”

You know nothing about me or my father. I was not effeminate, and his being self-employed did mean that he would have had no time for me regardless of my behavior. Your suggestions about my life show something about you but they show nothing about me or the reasons for my homosexuality.

Regarding Throckmorton: “He didn’t change his position lightly, a person like him must be honestly convinced the distant father theory is wanting or he’d have never overcome his religious predilictions towards these theories”.

How naive. There are numerous reasons why a conservative would dispute the distant father theory of homosexuality – for example, because it might make parents look bad by connecting their behaviour with homosexuality.

William
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Quo: “for example, because it might make parents look bad by connecting their behaviour with homosexuality.”

Yes, it might. So why do it when (1) there’s no need for it; (2) the evidence doesn’t justify it; and (3) there’s nothing wrong with homosexuality anyway?

Jason D
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

“Although I wasn’t particularly masculine, there was nothing “gay” about my mannerisms as a child.”

You were self-aware enough as a child to determine this on your own? Most adults aren’t self-aware enough to notice all kinds of things about themselves, yet you, as a child were THIS self-aware? And you’re absolutely certain that time hasn’t colored your memories the way it does with every other human being on the planet? Really?

And you hit the nail on Priya’s point with these 4 words:

“I wasn’t particularly masculine”

which, if your father were Hank Hill, might come out of his mouth as

“that boy ain’t right”

I don’t believe either one of these theories is correct — but the simple fact is, Quo, this is a “which came first, the chicken or the egg?” argument. You say it obviously was the egg, Priya says it might just have been the chicken. The fact that you deny the possibility of the egg, without any substantiation other than to say it doesn’t make “obvious sense” is what’s really naive.

Parents pick up on all kinds of clues about their children early on, even before they are walking and speaking. They pick up on whether the child is shy, extroverted, gregarious, goofy, serious, etc. A child’s personality and interests aren’t difficult for a parent to pick up on.

I guess it’s easier to blame it on your Dad than it is to face the possibility that your Dad picked up on your homosexuality in some type of conscious or unconscious way — something human being do every day in all sorts of situations. You’ve never met anyone and for no “obvious” reason you didn’t like them, or did like them?

That’s why you deny that equally plausible theory — because it leaves you nowhere else to run and no one else to blame. If it isn’t Dad’s fault, then it’s yours or Gods. Not an appetizing prospect. That’s what’s wrong with trying to assign blame or responsibility for a personal characteristic.

Ben in Oakland
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

“My lack of physical strength and health as a boy was one more factor contributing to my homosexuality. It helped to make me crave masculinity, a craving that ultimately became sexual in nature, just like Nicolosi says.”

As my late professor, C. West Churchman, commented frequently: “what is perceived as real is real in its consequences” and “If you don’t like what you are seeing, change the place you are standing.”

It is amazing what a small shift in perspective can accomplish. Quo, you “craved” masculinity, and that turned you gay.

Where you “craved”, I “reveled.” I was conscious of it even when I was a little boy, as I said. I just didn’t have a name for it. You took something that should have been a positive in your life, as it was for mine, and turned it into something weak and dirty. I took the same thing, and turned it into something positive and strengthening.

You look at it as something that weakens you and takes away from your life. I look at it as something that strengthens me and adds to my life. You’re a gay man desperately wishing to be straight, and I suspect you are quite an unhappy man. I’m a gay man without that little problem of self-hatred, and I am as happy as I can be, with a full, rich, life.

I have ALWAYS loved men and masculinity– and I’m not talking about watching sports. I had a few close friends who were girls in high school, and one girl in my 20’s. I didn’t start having close woman friends until I got into my 40’s. Since my 20’s, I have always had many friends, male and female, straight and gay. as Jason (brilliant, as always) says, shouldn’t I be straight by now?

I have often said that I don’t like men because I am gay, I am gay because I am so totally masculine-oriented. I had sex with women a few times, mostly out of academic interest. It was fun, but after the academic part was satisfied, it was ultimately not particularly interesting. Even the little bit of “masculine thrill” I got from it– look at me, I’m acting like a straight boy– soon dwindled to nothing.

As I have said to you before, quo. you’re problem isn’t that you are gay. your problem is how much you hate yourself.

If it weren’t for your self hatred, I doubt you would be looking at a vampire like nicolosi as a positive addition to your life. He clearly is not making you happy, though he is assisting you in punishing yourself for thinking that you are less of a man than you think
ought to be.

Priya Lynn
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Quo said “I explained my logic clearly enough, but you didn’t like it, so of course, to you, I was wrong.”.

You had no logic Quo as I pointed out, your assertion that because you think your distant father realtionship wasn’t due to your gayness lends no credence to your theory that distant fathers cause gayness. By your logic the fact that my father expressed his anger at my femininity proves gayness causes distant fathers, not the other way around.

I said ““I should add Quo, that the argument for gay sons causing distant fathers is most people can pick out a gay child by their mannerisms, speech, and interests, many fathers, particularly from when you were a child were anti-gay, anti-gay people reject gays.”

Quo said “Your argument doesn’t make obvious sense. In fact it’s obviously wrong, and I know that from personal experience.”.

And from my personal experience its obviously right. Even if you were correct that your father wasn’t distant because of your gayness that would do NOTHING to support your conclusion that his distance caused your gayness. Once again anecdotes are not science and you have nothing to contradict this obvious and likely scenario – ant-gay people are common, they distance themeselves from gays, its easy for most people to identify a gay child.

Quo said “Regarding the book I mentioned, you have missed my point completely”.

You had not point Quo, you made an argument from name-dropping – “I know this smart person who wrote about gayness and I can quote some of what he said, therefore I’m right”. The author of that book presented no evidence whatsoever that the absent fathers of the black community caused a spike in the level of gayness amongst blacks which is still a gaping hole in your theory.

Quo said “There are numerous reasons why a conservative would dispute the distant father theory of homosexuality – for example, because it might make parents look bad by connecting their behaviour with homosexuality.”.

The vast majority of christian conservatives associated with the “exgay” industry have no problem whatsoever blaming parents for their child’s gayness – look at what goes on at a “love” won out conference and Throckmorton was a member of this group of christian conservatives and in fact initially supported this position so if that was a motivation he’d have never had that opinion in the first place. Clearly you’re wrong.

Throckmorton taking his current positon further tends to contradict the christian theology that he holds dear, it suggests his god made gays rather than gays being created by man. Once again, for a person with all manner of incentive to blindly cling to the distant fathers cause gayness theory the only reason for him to reject that theory is that he became sincerely convinced it is wrong by the evidence of dominant role biology plays.

Priya Lynn
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

I missed this:

Quo said “my being unathletic, ill, physically weak, and so on…I wasn’t particularly masculine”.

And your father didn’t sense that you were gay, riiiiigght.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Jason D,

“You were self-aware enough as a child to determine this on your own? Most adults aren’t self-aware enough to notice all kinds of things about themselves, yet you, as a child were THIS self-aware?”

Looking back at my life, it’s clear that this is the case. I’m only participating in this discussion out of sheer astonishment that someone would actually claim to know more about this than me.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

You wrote, “your assertion that because you think your distant father realtionship wasn’t due to your gayness lends no credence to your theory that distant fathers cause gayness.”

Yes it does, because that is the only plausible alternative, given that there’s a statistical relationship between the two things.

“The author of that book presented no evidence whatsoever that the absent fathers of the black community caused a spike in the level of gayness amongst blacks which is still a gaping hole in your theory.”

I never said it did, but in any case, how would you know? Did you read it? I can see that you aren’t especially interested in the history of psychoanalysis. No one says that you have to be, but your lack of interest in it does not help you formulate a convincing criticism of it.

“The vast majority of christian conservatives associated with the “exgay” industry have no problem whatsoever blaming parents for their child’s gayness.”

Throckmorton is an individual, not “the vast majority”, so that’s beside the point.

Ben in Oakland
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

“Although I wasn’t particularly masculine, there was nothing “gay” about my mannerisms as a child.”

“I had a distant relationship with my father during my entire childhood, and I believe that was an important factor (along with my being unathletic, ill, physically weak, and so on).”

“My lack of physical strength and health as a boy was one more factor contributing to my homosexuality. It helped to make me crave masculinity, a craving that ultimately became sexual in nature, just like Nicolosi says.”

forgive the armchair analysis, but it seems so clear to me. Jason said: “You were self-aware enough as a child to determine this on your own? Most adults aren’t self-aware enough to notice all kinds of things about themselves, yet you, as a child were THIS self-aware?”
And you replied: “Looking back at my life, it’s clear that this is the case.”

From an early age, you got the idea that you weren’t masculine enough, whatever the hell that means. At least, in my opinion, what constitutes masculinity is the sum total of what all boys are actually like, not some mythical uber-boy who is truly masculine and by whom all else are judged. If you loved yourself back then, you would have loved yourself as a boy. I certainly did, which is why I reveled in masculinity. I was like you, not particularly masculine as judged by the Uber-Boy standard. I was frequently called something less than masculine, but I never believed it because I liked myself. I didn’t become truly “butch”, if indeed I ever was, until adolescence. and even then, if I was the butch one, then I was also the athletic boy who stubbornly insisted on classical music, and who in college learned to cook.

You weren’t masculine? You bought that line, by your own words, fairly early. This is just my belief, but I think every boy, except perhaps for future transexuals, is masculine by virtue of his birth. Self-love merely means accepting that as a starting place. Just like it means accepting oneself as a gay man and fully masculine– whatever that means.

All that you did not like about yourself as a child– I couldn’t begin to guess whether your Dad’s attitude had anything to do with anything– and do not like about yourself now– is like water to a divining rod for the likes of Mr. Nicolosi.

When someone tells you that you are dirty, sick, unclean, or not masculine enough, and especially, sinful and in need to salvation (which they offer, of course) it is the biggest mistake in the world to assume that 1) it’s true, and 2) that they are telling you for your benefit, and not for their own.

As i wrote in another context: the concept of sin, or illness, or brokenness, especially YOUR sin, etc becomes the expression of their will and their way of seeing the world, and if it is making you unhappy, or interfering with your life, then that is probably a good test of its truth value. Likewise, you pay the price with happiness in your life, while they reap the benefits– or, validation– and the “glory”.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Hmmm. I think this discussion, which I entered into against my better judgment, has gone far enough. I tell you what: instead of continuing this exchange, which has become entirely about me, on this forum, I’ll set up my own forum (“Debating Quo’s Homosexuality”) to give me a place where I can say all the things about myself (and about the other people who comment) that it wouldn’t be appropriate for me to say on Box Turtle Bulletin.

Burr
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

“Throckmorton is an individual, not “the vast majority”, so that’s beside the point.”

That doesn’t even begin to dismiss the truth t that the vast majority are in fact that way and that Throckmorton was a part of that majority, thus he had no unique motivations of his own as you weakly try to assert. Just goofy.

Seeing your feeble flopping and flailing only cements your incorrectness.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

It’s done. I’ve created my own web site (http://sites.google.com/site/debatingquoshomosexuality/home). If you want to continue this discussion, go comment there, if you dare, and I’ll tell you exactly what I really think about myself, my own homosexuality, and your views of it. Better be prepared for some uncensored, X-rated, and hard-hitting stuff. But please don’t continue this discussion here, because it’s hardly appropriate for this website.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Burr,

You provide no proof for your assertions about the “majority.” Actually it is common among conservative Christians or ex-gay movement supporters to hear that homosexuality is due to choice, or to sexual abuse, or demonic possession, or what have you. Not everyone in that camp thinks it’s due to bad parenting. And of course, you wouldn’t know what individual, personal motivations Throckmorton might happen to have.

Jason D
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Quo, it’s not so much that we’re questioning your life. It’s that we’re questioning your extraordinary gifts: namely coming out of the womb fully conscious of your surroundings and with fully functional memory pathways. See the rest of humanity comes out incomplete, has to learn human interaction, relationships, and unlike you, our memories are fragmented for the first 3-5 years of our lives as our brain is still forming for the first decade or so of existence.
We also lack your extraordinary ability to be both an unwilling participant in a situation while also being a stoic, unbiased, distant, neutral, objective observer.
Finally, we lack your telepathic powers, See, the rest of us have to guess and make assumptions, we’re not blessed with your ability to see into other’s thoughts, like that of your father.
The same God that cursed you with homosexuality seems to have given you some superhuman gifts as a tradeoff. I’d say go with it.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Jason D,

Continue discussion here

http://sites.google.com/site/debatingquoshomosexuality/

if you are interested in discussing this subject further. I think I have figured out how to allow comments now. I’m afraid the rules of this site don’t really allow me to say what I actually think, but I’ll say what I please on my own website.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Sorry, the website I directed you to does not seem to be working; I’ll delete it. If you comment here

http://debatingmyhomosexuality.blogspot.com/

however, that should work. Believe me, this discussion, fascinating as it is, is appropriate to an entirely different site.

BeckySue in Poway
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Since the topic has turned into the “distant father” issue and also someone had wondered about Karten’s research, here is a link to a preview of that dissertation. http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI3201129/

I only reviewed the preview of this online, and I got an outline when I saw him present this at a NARTH conference, but I lost it.

Elan used the Parental Bonding Index and the subjects generally showed they had experienced problematic parenting that I recall. However, the point of his study was to measure treatment success and its correlation with certain variables. Elan says that treatment success correlated best with improvement in being able to relate to heterosexual men as measured on some Restrictive Affectionate Behavior Between Men Scale (RABBM). As I recall, mentoring from heterosexual men was more helpful that reparative therapy per se.

To me that makes sense within the context of Nicolosi’s model. Therapy tries to do artificially what normal tribal interaction should have done naturally which is to mature someone into one or the other gender identity.

It could be that religious gay men who seek change are the only type of gay men who have distant relationships with fathers. Maybe the reparative model is kind of like how certain genetic populations do better on certain types of medications than others.

Do many gay men typically have a lot of close heterosexual men they hang out with?

Priya Lynn
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

I told Quo “your assertion that because you think your distant father realtionship wasn’t due to your gayness lends no credence to your theory that distant fathers cause gayness.”

Quo replied “Yes it does, because that is the only plausible alternative, given that there’s a statistical relationship between the two things.”.

You’re completely wrong about that Quo. It is not only plausible, it is likely that gay sons cause distant fathers. You have nothing to refute this. The statistical relationship is almost certainly because anti-gay fathers reject the sons they realize are gay. Even if this is not the case for you your lone anecdote doesn’t remotely even begin to make the case that distant fathers cause gayness – if it is true that your father was distant and not because of your gayness then it is very likely simply a coincidence that he was distant and you gay.

You’re claiming your perceived experience is solid proof that distant fathers cause gay sons and that somehow my experience of my father becoming distant because he perceived my femininity is irrelevant – that’s classic confirmation bias, you’re blind to the truth. My experience provides exactly the same proof of my position that your perceived experience provides for your position. You may not wish to accept that gay sons cause distant fathers but you have no evidence whatsoever to refute this.

I pointe out to Quo “The author of that book presented no evidence whatsoever that the absent fathers of the black community caused a spike in the level of gayness amongst blacks which is still a gaping hole in your theory.”

Quo said “I never said it did, but in any case, how would you know? Did you read it?”.

You referred to this book and claimed it tended to refute my observation. That was not the case.
Its obvious that the book presented no evidence that there was a spike in gayness amongst blacks because if there was you wouldn’t have hesitated to mention it rather than bizarrely asserting that because someone wrote a book discussing black gayness this means distant fathers cause gayness.

Quo said “I can see that you aren’t especially interested in the history of psychoanalysis. No one says that you have to be, but your lack of interest in it does not help you formulate a convincing criticism of it.”.

I don’t know where you’re getting that, I never criticized psychoanalysis, I never said a thing about it.

Quo said “Throckmorton is an individual, not “the vast majority”, so that’s beside the point.”.

He’s a christian conservative and given that the vast majority of such people infinitely prefer to blame parents rather than believing that their god did something bad, (like create those evil gays) its a safe bet that he had to overcome a lot of prejudice to reject the idea that distant fathers cause gayness and add to the likelyhood that gays may have been born that way.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

If you want to say anything about me do it on my website (http://debatingmyhomosexuality.blogspot.com/). I won’t reply to you here.

Priya Lynn
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Quo, as long as you comment here I’ll respond to you here.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

I’m commenting here to invite you to comment on my site, not because I want to discuss here. But I guess you’re just chicken, huh?

Priya Lynn
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Quo, I have no interest in dealing with your willful blindness in private, I have no interest in you as a person. I don’t care what you think, but when you come to a public forum to spread your preposterous unsupported assertions I may choose to respond for the sake of other readers who may be misled by you.

Quo
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

My website is public, not private. Anyone in the world with an internet connection can see it.

Your claim to have no interest in me as a person is hysterically funny, given the sheer volume of your posts about my life and about what you think about my homosexuality.

Repeatedly denying anything and everything that I say is not how someone who isn’t interested in what I think would behave – if you genuinely had no interest in what I think, you would never have bothered to comment on it in the first place. Believe me, this is not the first time I’ve heard that line, and it’s always all too obvious that the person issuing it does care.

Priya Lynn
August 9th, 2009 | LINK

Quo, as long as you go to your own “public” blog and hide out then you’re not hurting anyone and I don’t care what you do. When you go to public blogs to promote the idea that its wrong to be gay then I take an interest in countering your lies. I don’t comment for your sake, but for the sake of people who might be mislead by you.

Quo
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

Your response just proves my point. Each and every time you respond to me, you’re showing you do care what I think, and those lofty claimms that you don’t care look pretty foolish.

Oh well. I suppose I may as well respond to your arguments. You wrote a while ago that, a “wide range of studies have suggested that biology plays a major factor in deciding a person’s sexual orientation. Any one of these studies may not make a convincing case by themselves but taken as a whole it is very tough to argue convincingly that parental nurture is a primary factor in determining anyone’s sexual orientation.”

Not really. Biology and environment are not mutually exclusive factors and it reveals an extremely crude and naive way of thinking about human psychology to think they are. Both may play crucial roles, so demonstrating that one is important does not show that the other is unimportant – something which should be utterly obvious. In fact I’m amazed it’s even necessary to point this out.

Then you wrote that,

“There are many well documented examples of fathers being absent, such as WWII and the fatherlessness of black children and yet no evidence that this has ever raised the incidence of gayness which would have to be the case if there was any truth to your fantasy.”

No, it wouldn’t “have” to be the case. All I’m arguing is that distant fathers sometimes play a role in the development of homosexuality, not that they automatically cause it by some mechanical 100% predictable process. It all depends on the circumstances. A hundred other factors might prevent it from developing. If homosexuality is influenced by genetic factors, these may well be present at a different rate among different racial groups, so one couldn’t necessarily draw any conclusion about what factors may help to cause homosexuality on the basis of what happened among American blacks. The fact that the gay movement errupted in 1969, one generation after World War II when many fathers were away from their families, might suggest that it did play some role in increasing the rate of homosexuality.

Then you wrote that,

“Its been well documented that most people can pick out a gay person from their mannerisms, walk, talk, etc” and that “most people can pick out a gay child by their mannerisms, speech, and interests.”

That is pure fantasy. Nothing of the kind has been documented, and gay people (especially gay kids) should be very, very glad that it has not been – because they might all get beaten into a pulp if it were true. Actually most gay people, whether adults or children, behave like most straight people in most respects. The differences that do exist may be rather subtle, and there’s no guarantee parents would notice them. Why would you argue against theories that see homosexuality as a developmental disorder on the basis of an inaccurate cliche about gay people?

And then,

“What you’re suggesting is that is that its typically not the case that anti-gay fathers recognize their sons are effeminate at a young age and are turned off by this.”

Yes, I’m suggesting that. And I think it’s pretty plausible given that many gay people (including me) don’t conform to the effeminate or flamboyantly gay stereotype and never did.

Another of your arguments,

“If there was any substantive truth to the distant father theory and Narth’s ideas you would have succeeded in changing.”

No. Whether people can change their sexual orientation or not does not necessarily prove anything about what causes it, and finding out what causes it would in turn not necessarily show anything about whether it could be changed. Such ideas are among the more unfortunate fallacies that distort debate on this subject.

And you conclusion was,

” The statistical relationship is almost certainly because anti-gay fathers reject the sons they realize are gay.” Actually it is almost certainly for multiple reasons. The idea that the relationship works in one direction only is laughable, and one can reasonably conclude that distant fathers help to cause gay sons in some cases.

Quo
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

Regarding Throckmorton,

You wrote, “He’s a christian conservative and given that the vast majority of such people infinitely prefer to blame parents…”

How do you know that that’s what “the vast majority” of christian conservatives think or do? Did you conduct a statistical survey of them? Or are unsupported assertions always “preposterous” when I make them, but not when you make them?

William
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

It may be difficult to know ‘what “the vast majority” of christian conservatives think or do’, but I’ve yet to discover a proponent of sexual orientation change, from Tim LaHaye through Don Schmierer and Alan Chambers to Joseph Nicolosi, who doesn’t allege that parents are usually to “blame” for their children’s homosexuality, perhaps along with other factors such as sexual abuse. If you know of one, don’t keep the info to yourself; share it with us.

No theories about who’s to “blame” for heterosexuality seem to have been formulated yet, however. Anyone got one?

Going against nature: LGBT reparative therapy debunked (UPDATED) | Spirit of a Liberal
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

[…] focused his career on proving ex-gay therapy works. The fact that he is in print now giving up ex-gay therapy is also very significant.” Related Posts: (or not)Bad news for Progressive CatholicsMatthew […]

Priya Lynn
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

Quo said “Each and every time you respond to me, you’re showing you do care what I think, and those lofty claimms that you don’t care look pretty foolish.”

Quo, stop commenting here like you promised, go of to your private blog, wait for me to comment there and you’ll see how much I care about you you and what you think.

Quo said “Biology and environment are not mutually exclusive factors”.

I never said they were. However the environment includes much more than parental nuruturing, when you’re trying to claim that that is the major force in determining a person’s gayness you’re on mighty thin ground given all the studies that suggest biology and natal envirnment play the predominant role.

Quo said “If homosexuality is influenced by genetic factors, these may well be present at a different rate among different racial groups, one couldn’t necessarily draw any conclusion about what factors may help to cause homosexuality on the basis of what happened among American blacks.”

Talk to a geneticist, they’ll tell you that the racial differences are very superficial and that genetically we’re all very similar. If as you claim fatherless causes gayness black men would have a much higher rate of gayness – there is no evidence whatsoever to support your theory.

Quo said “The fact that the gay movement errupted in 1969, one generation after World War II when many fathers were away from their families, might suggest that it did play some role in increasing the rate of homosexuality.”.

The modern gay movement was triggered by the events at stonewall, if it weren’t for the police oppression and brutality that night gays may have continued to remain in the closet. Further, just because many gays decided to come out of the closet in no way suggests that there were more gays than there were before. Finally, there were many social movements in the 60’s that rejected traditional society, do you want to argue that all those were caused by fatherlessness as well?

I told Quo “Its been well documented that most people can pick out a gay person from their mannerisms, walk, talk, etc”

Quo said “That is pure fantasy. Nothing of the kind has been documented Actually most gay people, whether adults or children, behave like most straight people in most respects. “.

Your ignorance is showing. I don’t have time to dig up all the examples for you which you’d reject out of hand anway, but here is one:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20762841/

Try watching OUT TV or a similar gay channel for a while, its readily apparent to any honest person that you can usually pick out a gay person from their mannerisms, speech, interests, etc. At the very least if you want to (falsely) argue that this hasn’t been documented it is clearly true that your claim that gays behave the same way as straights hasn’t been documented itself.

I told Quo “What you’re suggesting is that is that its typically not the case that anti-gay fathers recognize their sons are effeminate at a young age and are turned off by this.”

Quo said “Yes, I’m suggesting that. And I think it’s pretty plausible given that many gay people (including me) don’t conform to the effeminate or flamboyantly gay stereotype and never did.”.

Personally I’ve never met a gay person that didn’t have stereotypical gay aspects to their behavior, interests, etc. As to you, you documented just those things in yourself:

“my being unathletic, ill, physically weak, and so on…I wasn’t particularly masculine”.

So your claim that you weren’t recognizably gay comes off as quite dishonest, and as I’ve stated several times your lone anecdote, even if true, doesn’t remotely even begin to provide any statistical validity to your claim that what is true for you must be true for many, most, or all gays.

I said “If there was any substantive truth to the distant father theory and Narth’s ideas you would have succeeded in changing.”

Quo said “No. Whether people can change their sexual orientation or not does not necessarily prove anything about what causes it, and finding out what causes it would in turn not necessarily show anything about whether it could be changed”.

False. Nicolosi makes it very clear that he believes if a gay person develops healthy non-sexual relationships with same sex people that their gayness will be cured. Given that many have done this and failed to change their orientation this proves that Narth doesn’t know its butt from a hole in the ground. The failure of virtually everone who has ever tried to change their orientation suggests that it is inborn, not a feature of some bad psychological development which could be remediated.

I said “The statistical relationship is almost certainly because anti-gay fathers reject the sons they realize are gay.”

Quo said “Actually it is almost certainly for multiple reasons.”.

I’d agree that poor relationships are caused for multiple reasons. However the statistical relationship between distant fathers and gay sons is almost certainly because anti-gay fathters reject the sons the realize are gay – there is no other plausible explanation.

Quo said “The idea that the relationship works in one direction only is laughable,”

I never said the relationships only work in one direction, so I’m not sure where you’re getting that once again.

Quo said “one can reasonably conclude that distant fathers help to cause gay sons in some cases.”.

There is no evidence to suppor that theory and the preponderance of studies showing that biologcal (which includes the biological environmental factors play a predominant, if not exclusive role combined with the total lack of evidence of historical periods of fatherlessness providing a spike in gayness soundly refutes your pet theory.

I wrote, “Throckmorton’s a christian conservative and given that the vast majority of such people infinitely prefer to blame parents…”

How do you know that that’s what “the vast majority” of christian conservatives think or do? Did you conduct a statistical survey of them? Or are unsupported assertions always “preposterous” when I make them, but not when you make them?”.

I’ve spent several years reading what christian conservative activists write about gay people and virtually all of them have blamed parents for their childs gayness and refused to acknowledge any validity to factors that would suggest gayness is inborn. Throckmorton came from a position of anti-gay activism (and he still does to a degree), he fully accepted the positions of NARTH, PFOX and the like, he’s gone from your position to one that acknowledges that gayness may be inborn, a startling aboutface for a christian conservative. It takes a lot for a chrisitan conservative like him to reject the prevailing christian dogma about gays and the only plausible explanation for that is that he has sincerely become convinced that it is unlikely that the distant father theory is true in many or most cases.

Emily K
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

Priya Lynn, you are right on with several points but I’m going to disagree on the part about all gays possessing “at least some of the stereotypical mannerisms.” It’s easy to pick out stereotypical gay people by stereotypical mannerisms. But beyond that, forget it.

And even with all the queer media out there, I’d hesitate to point to it as *the* representative for gay life – I find that TV in general has a stilted, unreal view of the world, no matter who is running it.

Priya Lynn
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

Emily, I said all gays I’ve met have at least some stereotypical aspects to their behavior, interests, etc. I did not rule out that there may be gays that do not. I’ve had several people eventually reveal to me that they were gay, in all cases I believed they were gay before they told me so, even though they were trying to pretend to be heterosexual.

Priya Lynn
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

I should add that we’ve all heard of “gaydar”, haven’t we?

Timothy Kincaid
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

Quo,

I believe you are misunderstanding how causation and correlation interrelate. In order for causation to be present, there must be correlation. But the presence of correlation does not always indicate causation.

About Fisher and Greenberg, that really doesn’t contradict what I said, when you place it in context. What they mean when they say that the evidence “fails to support the idea of the overly close, seductive mother” is that the evidence doesn’t clearly support the idea, but as the studies have produced inconsistent results, it doesn’t really refute it either.

If I am understanding this debate correctly, Fisher and Greenberg failed to find correlation between male homosexuality and “the overly close, seductive mother”. If correlation isn’t present then any notion of causation is refuted.

As to fathers, there is a correlation. It does appear that some studies have shown a correlation between male homosexuality and a recollection of closeness to the father.

But to truly establish correlation, we need to look at both sides. Not only should we find that gay men recall distant fathers, but we should be able to establish that fluctuations in the rate of distant fathers should result in fluctuations in sexual orientation.

But when we look to fluctuations, we don’t find compable sexuality fluctuations.

In 2004, 56 percent of black children lived in single-parent families (mostly mothers). That figure compared with 22 percent of white children and 31 percent of Hispanic children. And this is a trend that has been in place for several decades.

If absent or distant fathers are the cause of homosexuality – or even a significant cause of homosexuality – we should observe a fluctuation in the rates of homosexuality. All things being equal, we should see that blacks have a disproportionately high occurance of gay people, followed by Hispanics and then whites.

But the 2005 CDC report shows that blacks do not report more same-sex attraction, behavior, or identity. In fact they report slightly less. Even allowing for underreporting as a result of culture, there still is no evidence of a racial break-out such as should be readily evident.

So it appears unlikely that distant fathers can be estabished as the cause, or even the most significant factor in the establishment of homosexuality in most gay men.

Burr
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

FWIW, my parents thought my older brother was the gay one. He was less masculine, athletic, and got sick more often than I did, and also my father was more distant from him during his formative years.

But he’s the straight one. Go figure!

Regan DuCasse
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

Were Nicolosi correct about the father absent/weak…and mother dominant aspect to explain gender variance or homosexuality (and apparently that only works in gay men):

Then a WHOLE lot of black men would be gay.

The population of black men who have little or no relationship with their fathers, is strikingly disproportionate considering the size of the population.
And many black men will report they had an excellent relationship with their single parent moms and were successes because of it because of the discipline and strength of their mothers.
The strong black woman is practically a stereotype unto itself.
Yet and still, there is no disproportionate presentation of homosexuality in black men.

That alone tells you what a load of crap Nicolosi peddles.

Jason D
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

To piggyback on Regan’s point. There’s one little tiny gaping hole in this theory.

Looking through history, and thinking about the traditional family home with mom and dad, which parent is more likely to be occupied outside the home and away from the family for long periods of time?
Dad.
He’s planting crops, he’s staying late to finish that proposal, he’s gotta stay late, he works at a factory 12 hours a day, he works 10 days straight as a fireman, he’s off hunting and gathering….

Which parent is more likely to be away from the family for extended periods of time?
Dad.
He’s out hunting, he’s off to war, he’s a traveling salesman, a senator, pilot, actor, king, he’s training, he’s crusading….

If a child grows up with one parent, or loses a parent when they’re young, who’s it going to be?
Dad.
He was killed in the civil war, vietnam, Iraq. There was an accident at the factory, speedway, airport, power plant, construction site, etc. He didn’t know Mom was pregnant. He went back to college, his country, his family. He just disappeared.

It would appear that human civilization has evolved to make women the primary caregivers for children. In fact, we’ve argued in the past that that’s the way things *should* be.

So if a distant or absent father makes someone gay, why does that appear to be our default method of fatherhood? More importantly, shouldn’t gays make up far more than 10% of the population? I’d wager that over the course of human history, well more than 10% of the population grew up with a distant or absent father. At the very least, shouldn’t the incidence for bisexuality among males be higher, rather than virtually nonexistant?
I would also argue that if fatherly interaction prevents homosexuality, the amount of interaction is either a moving target that is different with each child, or the amount of interaction needed to make the difference between gay and straight is such a small amount of time that mere hours could make the difference.
Again, one would expect the amount of cumulative male bonding taking place over the course of a decade or so to be more than sufficient to naturally reverse course on homosexuality.

Richard W. Fitch
August 10th, 2009 | LINK

@Jason – “At the very least, shouldn’t the incidence for bisexuality among males be higher, rather than virtually nonexistant?”
As a previously married man, and one who has had most in common with other men who were/are married, I’m curious to know what studies support your claims. My personal experience leads me to believe that there is nearly as much bisexuality among males as among females. [The fluidity of female sexuality, I believe, has been extensively documented and supported.]

Priya Lynn
August 11th, 2009 | LINK

Timothy, do you have a link to the relevant portion of the 2005 CDC report shows that shows that blacks do not report more same-sex attraction, behavior, or identity? I’ve been googling but have been unable to locate the relevant portion. I’ve found an “ipaper” version of what seems to be the report but the search function does not seem to be working in it.

Jason D
August 11th, 2009 | LINK

“As a previously married man, and one who has had most in common with other men who were/are married, I’m curious to know what studies support your claims.”

I have none, I’m basing it on personal experience. As someone who once claimed to be bisexual, I certainly lived up to the cliche that “bisexual” is often a baby step out of the closet. Not always true, of course, but I’ve found true bisexuals to be rarer than gays and more rare among men than women.

That’s based on my personal experience.

My personal experience leads me to believe that there is nearly as much bisexuality among males as among females. [The fluidity of female sexuality, I believe, has been extensively documented and supported.]

and your comments are based on yours. If you’re not going to bust out some statistics, don’t expect me to.

Timothy Kincaid
August 11th, 2009 | LINK

Priya Lynn,

The report can be seen here.

You may want to look at tables 7 and 12

Priya Lynn
August 11th, 2009 | LINK

Thanks Timothy.

Ben in Oakland
August 11th, 2009 | LINK

Jason and Regan: I think you have both also hit upon the real problem with the Nickaloosi hypothesis, what it is really intended to promote.

There is a direct line between the weak- absent-father meme and the every-child-derserves-a-mother-and-father meme so prominent in the gay marriage debate

The answers are always in the subtext. Gay men are not real men and cannot be real fathers. Real fathers don’t turn their kids gay. The gays are trying make your children gay. they’re gonna get your children.

Jason wrote: Again, one would expect the amount of cumulative male bonding taking place over the course of a decade or so to be more than sufficient to naturally reverse course on homosexuality.

The more cumulative mail bonding I have, the queerer i get. fancy that.

Quo
August 16th, 2009 | LINK

Priya,

“However the environment includes much more than parental nuruturing, when you’re trying to claim that that is the major force in determining a person’s gayness you’re on mighty thin ground given all the studies that suggest biology and natal envirnment play the predominant role.”

I did not claim that parental nurturing was the major force in determining a person’s “gayness.” I said it was one influence among others. You imply that studies have proven that “biology and natal envirnment play the predominant role”, but, unsurprisingly, you provide no evidence for that claim whatever. In any case, it wouldn’t show that having a bad relationship with one’s father was not a factor of some kind even if biology was “predominant”, whatever you suppose that means.

“Talk to a geneticist, they’ll tell you that the racial differences are very superficial and that genetically we’re all very similar. If as you claim fatherless causes gayness black men would have a much higher rate of gayness – there is no evidence whatsoever to support your theory.”

That “genetically we’re all very similar” is just a vague general truth that does not contradict my point. There is no reason whatever why genes that might predispose people to homosexuality must be present with exactly the same frequency in all racial groups – given that no racical group is precisely the same as any other genetically, it would be very surprising if they were.

Just to repeat myself, I did not claim that “fatherlessness causes gayness”; that was your caricature of what I did claim, which was that fatherlessness was one important factor among numerous others. I really don’t need to rebut your suggestion about what “must” be true if that were the case, as it was not what I argued.

“just because many gays decided to come out of the closet in no way suggests that there were more gays than there were before. ”

I never said it proved that, but it is perfectly compatible with what one might expect if that were the case.

“Finally, there were many social movements in the 60’s that rejected traditional society, do you want to argue that all those were caused by fatherlessness as well?”

No, that would be stupid – just as suggesting that the idea that one social movement that rejected traditional society may have been partly caused by fatherlessness cannot be correct unless all social movements that rejected traditional society were caused by fatherlessness is stupid.

From the website you directed me to at http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20762841/,

“A swing of the hips or a swaggered shoulder is enough for many casual observers to identify a man’s sexual orientation, according to a study published in the September issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.”

Do you really suppose that most homosexual men swing their hips or swagger their shoulders in a way that makes it obvious that they are homosexual? I’m homosexual, and I know that I don’t do that. I also know that most homosexual men don’t do it. Not only have we no natural inclination not to behave that way, we do have an interest in not behaving in a way that makes our sexuality apparent to casual observers.

So what that one study got published in the “Journal of Personality and Social Psychology” – plenty of rubbish gets published. It had a tiny sample size of eight people -worthless from a scientific perspective, because there’s no way it could be representative of such a large and diverse group as homosexual men. Even if the study had not been rubbish, one study, even a good one, would hardly show that something was “well documented.”

I wonder if you really take this seriously,

““There’s reason to think that gay people can’t conceal their homosexuality,” says Michael Bailey, a professor of psychology at Northwestern University.”

Michael Bailey is an idiot who has no credibility as a commentator on homosexuality. Nothing he says should be taken seriously; his comments there are just more dumbed-down rhetoric for popular consumption, and I’m not sure he even cares whether what he is saying is true or not. It’s perfectly obvious that gay people can and do conceal their homosexuality. How does he suppose that so many homosexuals would be able to serve in the military for years without discovery (to take just one example) if what he is saying were true?

You also said, “Try watching OUT TV or a similar gay channel for a while, its readily apparent to any honest person that you can usually pick out a gay person from their mannerisms, speech, interests, etc’, and, “Personally I’ve never met a gay person that didn’t have stereotypical gay aspects to their behavior, interests, etc.”

Nothing of the kind is apparent. I have spent enough time among homosexuals, and have enough experience of life generally, to know that what you are saying about homosexuals is false. Gay people do not always or even “usually” have mannerisms, speech or anything else that makes their homosexuality apparent, one rubbishy study with a tiny sample size notwithstanding.

You tell me that I am “quite dishonest” to claim that I was not recognizibly gay because I admitted to being unathletic, ill, physically weak, and so on…I wasn’t particularly masculine”. Do you think that all gay people are unathletic, ill, and all those other bad things, and that non-gay people are not?

“Nicolosi makes it very clear that he believes if a gay person develops healthy non-sexual relationships with same sex people that their gayness will be cured.”

So? That has nothing to do with what i argued. I don’t have healthy non-sexual relationships with same sex people and never said I did.

“The failure of virtually everone who has ever tried to change their orientation suggests that it is inborn, not a feature of some bad psychological development which could be remediated.”

It suggests nothing of the sort. The idea that people must be born gay if they can’t change it is a classic fallacy that has been debunked many times, by Albert Ellis back in the 1690s for instance, and by William Byne in the 1990s, in one rather well known and widely read article. Look it up.

(You’re trying to argue that if change from homosexuality isn’t usually possible, then NARTH’s theories about what causes it would have to be wrong – but that’s an illogical argument, no matter how convenient you find it).

Quo
August 16th, 2009 | LINK

Actually, I meant that Ellis debunked that idea in the 1960s, not the 1690s – serves me right for making such a long post, one always makes some typos. It was in his book “Homosexuality: Its Causes and Cure”. His arguments there were very similar to those Byne made almost thirty years later (both of them used imprinting as an example to show that behavior patterns that aren’t inborn cannot necessarily be changed). It wouldn’t suprise me if Byne used Ellis as a source without acknowledgement.

Quo
August 17th, 2009 | LINK

Timothy,

“If I am understanding this debate correctly, Fisher and Greenberg failed to find correlation between male homosexuality and “the overly close, seductive mother”. If correlation isn’t present then any notion of causation is refuted.”

What they found, if I recall correctly, was that studies produced inconsistent results, and that firm conlusions on this point were thus not possible. Look it up for yourself if you really care.

“All things being equal, we should see that blacks have a disproportionately high occurance of gay people, followed by Hispanics and then whites.”

All things being equal, maybe, but things are never equal in reality. This argument about blacks was first made by Judd Marmor in his 1980 book “Homosexual Behavior”. It may be useful to recall what he said there:

“Moreover, if the strong-mother/weak-or-absent father constellation were a determining factor, one would expect to find a much higher incidence of male homosexuality among urban blacks, since life in the black ghetto has for decades produced a large number of broken homes in which the mother was the mainstay of family life. However, there is no evdience that the incidence of homosexuality is any greater in black men than in white men. This highlights the fact that there are other acculturating factors that probably play a significant role in the development of homosexual behavior. For example, as Harlow and Harlow (1965) have shown, good peer relationships can often override the negative effect of a poor mother relationship. The numerous, readily available peer relationships of ghetto life may present compensating models for masculine identification that make up for the absence of such models within the family. In addition, the mores of ghetto life do not usually reflet the sexual puritanism and antiheterosexual bias that so often characterizes the background of middle-class homosexuals, both male and female.” p. 11

Note that Marmor does not conclude, in his version of this argument, that the apparent fact that there isn’t more homosexuality among blacks discredits the idea that distant fathers sometimes play a role in the development of homosexuality. His suggestion appears to be that good peer relationships make up for the consequences of that, which is as likely to be true as any other theory.

Unfortunately, Marmor’s argument was popularized, in a greatly over-simplified and dumbed-down form and without his careful qualification, in the 1990s by gay writers, notably by Simon LeVay and Andrew Sullivan, neither of whom acknowledged Marmor as their source, though they must have been perfectly aware of him.

“But the 2005 CDC report shows that blacks do not report more same-sex attraction, behavior, or identity.”

Congratulations, Timothy. That’s the very first time in my experience that anyone has ever mentioned actual evidence to support the claim that there isn’t more homosexuality among blacks, something that people usually expect everyone to accept simply in the name of political correctness.

Whatever the reason for this finding, it doesn’t show that distant fathers cannot be a factor in the development of homosexuality if there is still an overall correspondence between the two phenomena, which Fisher and Greenberg (who were reviewing numerous studies) found there was.

William
August 17th, 2009 | LINK

All right, Quo, so it hasn’t been proved that “distant fathers cannot be a factor in the development of homosexuality”. It hasn’t been proved that all sorts of other things “cannot be a factor in the development of homosexuality” either, a point that I’ve already made ad nauseam. (Absolute proof outside the realm of pure logic is, of course, impossible.)

Obviously distant fathers can’t be THE cause of homosexuality, since there are plenty of homosexual men who didn’t have distant fathers, e.g. me. But you wish, for whatever reason, to believe that a distant father was a factor in the development of YOUR homosexuality.

So convinced as you are of this, why do you keep coming on here trying to convince everyone else of it? Are you challenging them to disprove your belief? Even if they’re sceptical, as I am, you must know perfectly well that they couldn’t come anywhere near to disproving it, as they know practically nothing about you.

Or, since you clearly think that you homosexuality is a negative trait, for which you want to blame your parents, are you trying to convince the rest of us who are gay that OUR homosexuality is a negative trait, for which we ought to blame our parents? You won’t achieve it.

Timothy Kincaid
August 17th, 2009 | LINK

Quo,

Your argument now seems to consist of “you can’t prove that absent/distant fathers cannot be a factor in the development of homosexuality in some men.”

If that is your argument, you are correct. I cannot.

I also cannot disprove that Gerber strained peas are a factor.

Chris McCoy
August 17th, 2009 | LINK

Everyone here should really take a moment and learn about Logical Fallacy.

I believe it would make debating people like Quo so much easier.

Almost every one of Quo’s arguments are simple Logical Fallacies.

When Quo says:

No one can reasonably conclude that sons who become gay always make their fathers distant rather than the other way around. People who do conclude that either haven’t thought about it properly or are simply looking for an excuse to dismiss a theory they don’t like.

Both arguments should equally be dismissed as the Fallacy of Converse Accident. Just because either case happens for 1 individual does not make it true for all individuals, either for his case, or for the opposite.

When Quo says:

Regarding the reasons why I don’t use my real name, I find that a rather eyebrow-raising question coming from you, given that you have certainly shown that you appreciate the virtues of online anonymity, but I guess I shouldn’t say any more about that.

This should be dismissed as an Ad Hominem attack against an individual in an attempt to lend his argument more weight by discrediting his opposition as morally questionable.

When Quo says:

What they mean when they say that the evidence “fails to support the idea of the overly close, seductive mother” is that the evidence doesn’t clearly support the idea, but as the studies have produced inconsistent results, it doesn’t really refute it either.

This is an example of Denying the antecedent. In addition to also being an example of Negative Evidence.

When Quo says:

It was that the argument that theories about how male homosexuality is caused to a poor relationship with the father are discredited because they supposedly do not fit African Americans doesn’t stand up well when you consider that one of the best-known proponent of those theories had extensive experience with blacks, and in fact probably based his theories about homosexuality originally on his experience with black patients.

This can be dismissed as supposition. Without supporting evidence to support the claim of basis for the author’s material, this is pure conjecture. Please provide quotes from the Author that indicate that material on 1 subject was predicated by work on the other.

When Quo says:

You wrote, “your assertion that because you think your distant father realtionship wasn’t due to your gayness lends no credence to your theory that distant fathers cause gayness.”

Yes it does, because that is the only plausible alternative, given that there’s a statistical relationship between the two things.

This should be dismissed as Argument by Lack of Imagination. Just because you can’t think of any alternate possibilities does not make the one you did think of true.

When Quo says:

“The author of that book presented no evidence whatsoever that the absent fathers of the black community caused a spike in the level of gayness amongst blacks which is still a gaping hole in your theory.”

I never said it did, but in any case, how would you know? Did you read it? I can see that you aren’t especially interested in the history of psychoanalysis. No one says that you have to be, but your lack of interest in it does not help you formulate a convincing criticism of it.

This should be dismissed as another Ad Hominem attack against Priya. Quo does not prove his point other than by attacking Priya by claiming she is uneducated in a field in which he has not provided his own credentials.

Quo says:

You provide no proof for your assertions about the “majority.” Actually it is common among conservative Christians or ex-gay movement supporters to hear that homosexuality is due to choice, or to sexual abuse, or demonic possession, or what have you. Not everyone in that camp thinks it’s due to bad parenting. And of course, you wouldn’t know what individual, personal motivations Throckmorton might happen to have.

Two Ad Hominem attacks, one against Burr, and a second, against Dr Throckmorton. Are we seeing a pattern here? Quo also asks us to reject Burr’s claims on the basis of lack of evidence, but provides no evidence to back his claim about what is “common” regarding Christian ideology.

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