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Mark Yarhouse needs to decide between honesty and anti-gay activism

Timothy Kincaid

July 15th, 2011

Mark Yarhouse, professor of psychology at Regent University, frustrates me.

On the one hand, he has been willing to conduct research and produce results that have called into question long held presumptions about orientation change efforts. In much of his current writing, Yarhouse has distinguished between experiencing attraction, identity, and behavior and seeks to move away from the affirmation vs. reorientation dichotomy and to focus on reconciling values with a structure of behavior.

But on the other, he has utilized selective language that encourages confusion and has allowed others to mischaracterize his work in ways that he knows to be dishonest. He has allowed, if not encouraged, political positioning that well serves anti-gay activists but which is in direct contradiction with his own endeavors.

And today we have an example of each.

As noted at Dr. Warren Throckmorton’s site, Yarhouse released a study in Edification (aChristian psychology journal published by the American Association of Christian Counselors) that found that same-sex attracted men in heterosexual marriages experienced an increase rather than * do not experience a decrease of such attractions over time. (Actually, the entire journal is fascinating in how it illustrates the way in which some within the most conservative end of Christianity are struggling to make sense of conflicts between doctrine and observation.)

But also today we have Yarhouse speaking to the Christian Broadcasting Network in defense of the Bachmann clinic’s prayer and promise about complete reorientation:

YouTube Preview Image

If you’ve watched the mainstream media’s reporting in the last day or so, you’ve seen these tapes which suggest that changing sexual orientation is not possible. In fact, at least one major study shows change is possible.

Psychologist Mark Yarhouse explored the question in a six year work that he presented at the American Psychological Association’s annual conference.

Yarhouse: I think our study raises that question again, says wait a minute, here’s a change effort sustained over time and there’s a pretty significant percentage of people for whom this is helpful.

Let’s stop there. Or, as Mark would say, “Wait a minute!”

There is a world of difference between “this is helpful” and “change is possible.” I don’t doubt for a moment that many people who stay year after year after year in Exodus ministries find the efforts to be “helpful”. If they didn’t, they probably would eventually quit, as more than a third of Yarhouse’s study did.

But did they change their orientation? That is a different question, one the CBN tries to answer through bulletin points.

Yarhouse and coauthor Stan Jones followed 63 people who tried to change with the help of Christian ministry.

Thirty percent were able to reduce their homosexual attraction enough to be celibate without distress. And (smugly) another twenty-three percent were able to convert to opposite-sex attraction. Total the change, fifty-three percent.

Is this a truthful representation of what Stan Jones and Mark Yarhouse discovered? No, not at all. Not even close.

First the numbers: Actually they followed 98 people, of which 37 dropped out of the program. While in testing drug efficacy it might be appropriate to ignore drop-outs, in testing whether one can change orientation, it’s pretty relevant whether they stick around.

After all, if Mark is going to say that “change effort sustained over time” is evidence of efficacy, then surely not sustaining it over time is evidence of inefficacy. Dr. Yarhouse simply cannot have it both ways.

Taking the 37 dropouts into consideration, we come up with a different calculation:

    Success: Conversion – 14 (14%)
    Success: Chastity – 18 (18%)
    Non-Success – 29 (30%)
    Drop-Outs – 37 (38%)

But this deception goes beyond numbers. It presents definitions of “success” that are laughable outside of hard-core anti-gay conservative Christian circles.

I don’t know of a secular person or a moderate to liberal Christian who would characterize achieving celibacy as a change in sexual orientation. We all know of a few gay people who have “achieved celibacy” who would much rather than they hadn’t and such an “acheivement” says nothing about their orientation.

But where the CNB report is most dishonest is in their smug announcement that twenty-three percent were able to convert to opposite-sex attraction.

Really? Opposite sex attraction without any caveat, asterisk, or explanation?

Then explain why Jones and Yarhouse’s report said this:

[W]hile we found that part of our research population experienced success to the degree that it might be called (as we have here) “conversion,” our evidence does not indicate that these changes are categorical, resulting in uncomplicated, dichotomous and unequivocal reversal of sexual orientation from utterly homosexual to utterly heterosexual. Most of the individuals who reported that they were heterosexual at T6 did not report themselves to be without experience of homosexual arousal, and they did not report their heterosexual orientation to be unequivocal and uncomplicated.

Or why Jones clarified:

A typical hetero male finds himself attracted to a wide range of females. But among the successful people who reported conversion the typical response was I’m very happy with my sexual responses to my wife, but I don’t experience much hetero attraction to other women. Also, when asked and pressed about whether they still find attraction to men, they will say: ‘Yes, if I let my mind go in that direction.’

Sorry, but that isn’t a heterosexual. It’s just not. And that isn’t the kind of change that is being promised by Bachmann’s clinic.

A dishonest researcher is not just one who misrepresents their own research. A dishonest researcher is one who sees others misuse or misstate his work and does nothing to correct them.

It’s time for Mark Yarhouse to decide which is more important to him, his honesty or anti-gay activism.

UPDATE

* More accurately, the participants expressed increased heterosexual behavior but measures that included both behavior and attractions, fantasies, and emotional attachments illustrated no material change (though a small change in the direction of homosexuality). It is reasonable to conclude that removing the behavior component would likely reveal a moderate shift towards homosexual attractions, but this is not clearly reported by Dr. Yarhouse.

Comments

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kelly
July 15th, 2011 | LINK

“found that same-sex attracted men in heterosexual marriages experienced an increase rather than decrease of such attractions over time.”

This isn’t quite true. The difference is tiny (4.33 vs. 4.57) and not statistically significant.

For those who don’t read the research, here’s the main point: 250 “mixed marriages” were surveyed and most were happy.

I don’t know Yarhouse’s exact stance on orientation but it helps to understand that humans are heterosexual and attractions to the same sex are just that. Calling both “orientations” is inaccurate and mis-leading.

“utilized selective language that encourages confusion and has allowed others to mischaracterize his work in ways that he knows to be dishonest”

Pot, kettle, black.

pax58
July 15th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly,
You have a right to your opinion, but not to have it go unchallenged. “All humans are born heterosexual”, how do you know this? Ask a few gay men, myself included, and most will tell you they were knew there was a difference fairly early on.
I think what the author of this article is pointing out: true scientist may not be absolutely without bias, but through peer review, they try to not take sides on issues, but look for truth.
I for one am not surprised that someone from Regent University is more interested in pushing an agenda rather than trying to understand scientific fact….its a free country…he’s allowed to be an activist, but can’t be an objective scientist when he deliberately mispresents his/other’s studies to push the agenda.

Reed Boyer
July 15th, 2011 | LINK

The difference IS insignificant – because these are bisexual men (4.33 – 4.57 on a scale of 1 – 7 is fairly solidly in the center).

T. Kincaid’s breakdown, however, is quite clear.

This has been an ongoing “discussion” (debate) since the Jones/Yarhouse study in 2007. Kincaid and Throckmorton have had long exchanges about that.
http://wthrockmorton.com/2007/09/18/debate-continues-on-the-jones-yarhouse-study-of-sexual-orientation/

I have also been confused as to Yarhouse’s conclusions (if any) as they seem to be continuing to “evolve” (i.e., “changing”) but still observe a hetero/homo sexual binary that shifts language and definitions of “change” and “same-sex attraction” to suit the outcomes.

Christopher
July 15th, 2011 | LINK

Your best defence is to live life openly and honestly.

You are what you are, wherever on whomever’s scale you find yourself.

TampaZeke
July 15th, 2011 | LINK

Also missing from the discussion is how Yarhouse got those 97 participants. They were hand picked by “ex-gay” groups who considered them to be examples of SUCCESS stories.

It literally took him years to come up with the 97.

PLAINTOM
July 15th, 2011 | LINK

“Regency University”says it all!

David in Houston
July 15th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly,
What the hell difference does it make, whether you call it “attractions to the same sex” or “orientation”. Attractions are innate. You cannot make a “logical” choice to be attracted to someone. If I asked you to be attracted to a 300 lb. eskimo with buck teeth, the odds are that you wouldn’t be able to comply with my request. Unless you already has a “thing” for heavy-set men that look like Bugs Bunny. — Actually, NO, I’m not going to describe myself as a heterosexual with same-sex attractions. I’m not going to lie, just to pacify you. I’ve never felt like I was heterosexual with sexual issues… ever. Let me guess, African-Americans are simply caucasians with pigment issues.

What we’ve got here (the research) is the Will & Grace scenario. Except in this case, the gay man is pretending to be straight because his religion tells him he has to. These men are desperate and VERY motivated to succeed. Even to the point of lying to themselves and others. I have no doubt that it’s possible to fall in love with Grace over time. But Will is NEVER going to be sexually aroused by Grace the way a heterosexual man would, and no amount of praying is going to change that.

Priya Lynn
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly/elsa/evil Becky/omar/tom said “I don’t know Yarhouse’s exact stance on orientation but it helps to understand that humans are heterosexual and attractions to the same sex are just that. Calling both “orientations” is inaccurate and mis-leading.”.

LOL, to claim someone who feels only same sex attraction is heterosexual is beyond idiotic. That is the very definition of gay and can’t be described honestly as anything other than a same sex sexual orientation. Your pathetic attempt to claim gays don’t really exist is belied by the entirety of human history in every society that ever existed.

Jerry
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly, sweetie, I think most of us here would agree that it would be “misleading” to refer to us as “heterosexual.” Remember, experiencing same-sex attractions is only half of the story. The other half is the complete absence of attraction to the opposite sex, and I think it would be “inaccurate” to say thats a trait commonly missing from heterosexuals.

kelly
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

“Attractions are innate”

Nope. Attractions are quite fluid.

pax58, you think BTB or TWO have any biases? TWO is an absolute joke. BTB is considerably more thoughtful, though still odd at times.

“knew there was a difference fairly early on”

“early on” meaning around 5 or 8? You do realize that those first 5-8 years are incredibly formative?

I don’t think it’s too controversial to assert that humans are heterosexual creatures. That’s how we procreate and the species survives. However you want to label same sex attractions is up to you but has no bearing on the fact that humans are heterosexual.

Lorenzo from Oz
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Humans are generally heterosexual; they are clearly not innately and universally heterosexual. Apart from the evidence of testimony and behaviour in our contemporary Western cultures, there is a rich anthropological literature on “third gender” roles in a vast range of societies. Humans are sexually and gender diverse. If you add up transgenders, intersex, same-sex attracted and same-sex oriented, on the CDC survey evidence (pdf) one gets to about 10% of the population. So, humans are about 90% heterosexual.

ZRAinSWVA
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

@ kelly: Attractions are quite fluid.

Really? Perhaps if one is bisexual–and I know there’s a spectrum of bisexuality out there–but not if one is strictly heterosexual or homosexual. And does that mean that you, whom I assume is heterosexual, has occasional longings to ‘go over to the dark side’?

@ kelly: early on” meaning around 5 or 8? You do realize that those first 5-8 years are incredibly formative?

And? Yes they are, but what’s your point?

@ kelly: I don’t think it’s too controversial to assert that humans are heterosexual creatures.

We may have bodies that are organically structured for procreation, but that doesn’t mean the ‘wiring’ is all the same. I am gay, period, with no attraction to women at all. That being said, I think it’s incredibly controversial and uninformed “to assert that humans are heterosexual creatures”. Bulls**t.

William
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly:

‘… it helps to understand that humans are heterosexual…’

Most are, but a minority are not. You can keep on saying that ALL are till the cows come home, but that won’t make it true. You obviously want reality to do the decent thing and conform to your ideas of how things ‘ought’ to be. I’m sorry to disappoint you, but it won’t.

‘…and attractions to the same sex are just that. Calling both “orientations” is inaccurate and mis-leading [sic].’

Just otiose game-playing with language. It does nothing to support your opinions; it just points up their silliness.

‘You do realize that those first 5-8 years are incredibly formative?’

Incredibly formative in respect of what? Sexual orientation? If so, how do you know? You may believe so, and that belief was certainly fashionable during the middle years of the last century, but a belief, no matter how fashionable it may become, is not the same thing as an established fact. As Dr Cheryl Weill wrote in her book “Nature’s Choice: What Science Reveals About the Biological Origins of Sexual Orientation” (2008):

“If you go to the scientific literature and try to find papers concerning social learning theory and sexual orientation determination, you will find publications that are what I call opinion papers. People discuss current findings and offer opinions, but no data to support their opinions.”

‘That’s how we procreate and the species survives.’

Yes, I think that we all know that. I’ve been aware of it for quite some years, as a matter of fact. But thank you for reminding us. Does that prove that ALL humans are heterosexual? No. Does it even point to that conclusion? No, and the simple, hard facts of experience thoroughly negate it.

Richard Rush
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

I didn’t bother reading beyond the first sentence of this post:

Mark Yarhouse, professor of psychology at Regent University, frustrates me.

A professor of psychology at Pat Robertson’s Regent University would have to be a quack, or they wouldn’t hire him.

As PLAINTOM said, “’Regency University’ says it all!”

TampaZeke
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly, I “procreated” TWICE and so did my husband and I can assure you that we are BOTH as queer as three dollar bills.

You seem to think that “gay” means “sterile”.

But I guess that should be expected from someone who believes that people 100% attracted to the same sex and 0% attracted to the opposite sex are actually misbehaving heterosexuals.

I don’t think you’re actually trying to be, but your cluelessness is hysterically funny.

Priya Lynn
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly/elsa/evil Becky/omar/tom said “Attractions are quite fluid.”.

If that were the case then all people would have no problem changing from gay to straight. The fact that there have been no documented cases of this despite thousands and thousands of attempts proves attractions are fixed. Bisexuals may give the appearance of fluidity because we may change to different gendered partners, but regardless of which gender we are with we remain attracted to both sexes and that is also fixed.

Kelly/Elsa/evil Becky/Omar/Tom said “pax58, you think BTB or TWO have any biases? TWO is an absolute joke.”.

You’re just mad because TWO banned you for your constant repitition of lies and pretending to be more than one person to create the false impression that several people have the same opinion as you. If you were to try the crap here that you did there I doubt you’d last a whole lot longer

Kelly/Elsa/Evil Becky/Omar/Tom said “I don’t think it’s too controversial to assert that humans are heterosexual creatures. That’s how we procreate and the species survives. However you want to label same sex attractions is up to you but has no bearing on the fact that humans are heterosexual.”.

You’re claiming all humans are heterosexual, that is far too stupid to be controversial. What determines heterosexuality or gayness is attractions, to claim attractions have nothing to do with orientation is just idiotic. But of course you don’t make such claims in seriousness, you do it because you’re a troll, your goal here, just as it was at TWO is to annoy, not to have any sort of honest debate.

Bruce Garrett
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

What Lorenzo said. You are forgetting something else that humans are: social animals. Every individual human does not have to be heterosexual in order for humanity as a whole to be successful at procreation, and in fact you can make a good case that having a small minority of homosexuals in the population, caring for and nurturing the community as a whole, better serves that end then having all individuals be heterosexual. It is the viability of our communities, more then the activity or our genitals, that insures our long term survival.

Something to think about, while you are cheering on those who are tearing families and communities apart for the sake of their own cheap paranoias, and power lusts. Millions of years of adaptive evolution didn’t give every male who ever walked this earth an erogenous prostate gland, whether they had any use for that or not, for nothing. Homosexuality plays a role in our kind’s survival, or our bodies would not have adapted to it.

Regan DuCasse
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Excellent, Bruce!
To extend your point, there are indigenous cultures across the globe that accepted gender variance as a fact of nature and came to terms with it in a range of either benign response, or as something mystical and good because of an individual embracing BOTH characters of males and females.
This sort of basis in allowing integration supported several things: that their community WAS more enhanced, as an alliance.
As I point out often, but more intelligent people consider respectfully, is that men and women forced into rigid gender based hierarchies do NOT get along at all. With the worst human suffering being feminized, THAT in itself speaks as evidence.
Were anyone brave enough to consider another possible: is that gay men are here to civilize and teach straight men how to treat women better and lesbian’s role is the same as well. There is a fundamental circle of gender based human sexuality that invokes EMPATHY,rather than those most selfish pursuits and entitled dominance that usually occurs.

For example, those things that make straight males most nervous about gay males, is how women typically feel about straight men. An opportunity for a straight male to EMPATHIZE with a women is lost because of training BY other straight men. There is also much to be gained from having op sex relationships with homosexual people that provide all the spiritual, emotional, intellectual and social benefits, without the sexual tension to compromise all of that.

Heteros never can or have been able to do this alone, there is a tempering that is grossly missing through thousands of years of enforcement of more primitive, brutal and reactionary entitlements straight males have always given themselves.
Especially through the inventions of religious disciplines and calling it God’s laws and standards. And willfully and stubbornly insisting on it, regardless of much to refute or contradict it.
Were gay people generally embraced as allies and women embraced as equals, perhaps a lot less brutality would exist in the world.
I think it’s more than a theory. The tragedy is how few people have the stones to test it to it’s full capacity.

kelly
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

First, Timothy lies that the research shows an increase in SSA. In fact it’s statistically insignificant.

Secondly, the participants had all disclosed their SSA to their spouses. One could hypothesize that this made changing attractions less necessary but the study does not go in that direction.

Finally, for those who don’t read the study, the majority of the participants were living satisfying “mixed orientation” marriages. Not surprising that BTB left that part out.

Jerry
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

“First, Timothy lies that the research shows an increase in SSA. In fact it’s statistically insignificant.”

Well, according to the link on Throckmortons site, Yarhouse felt his work showed “something similar,” so I don’t understand why you’re fussing at Timothy.

“Finally…the majority of the participants were living satisfying ‘mixed orientation’ marriages. Not surprising that BTB left that part out.”

I’m sure everyone at BTB is happy for them, but since the question at hand is whether or not the gays in those marriages eventually turned straight, then, no, it really isn’t suprising that BTB left that out since it doesn’t have much bearing on the question.

StraightGrandmother
July 16th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly,
Are we reading the same report?

Because I read this on page 41,
“The research suggests, however, that many mixed orientation relationships do not survive. It has been estimated that only about a third of couples even attempt to stay together after disclosure (Buxton, 2004). Of that third that attempt to stay together, only about half remain intact for three or more years (Bux- ton).”

Page 48
Q. Future Potential of Marital Relationship
Sexual minority group 95 responded,
Extremely Positive about their relation ship’s future (n=37; 38.8%)
Positive (n=21; 22.1%),
Total = 60.9%

Neither positive or negative (n=18; 18.9%)
Negative (n=12; 12.6%)
Extremely negative (n=7; 7.4%).
Total = 38.9%

Heterosexual Spouses 113 individuals responded
Positive about their relation-ship’s future (n=29; 25.7%).
Extremely Positive (n=23; 20.4%)
Total = 46.1%

Neither positive or negative (n=23; 20.4%)
Extremely negative (n=22; 19.5)
Negative (n=16; 14.2%)
Total = 54.1%

And this,
“Both groups were specifically asked to describe the level of “happiness” in their mixed orientation marriage, using a Likert scale from
0 (Extremely Unhappy) to 6 (Perfect).

The mean level of satisfaction for the sexual minority group was 2.9 which fell closest to the Happy label on the Likert scale.

The mean score for the heterosexual spouses group was 2.1, which fell closest to the A Little Unhappy label.

These scores, as well as those from the previously described item, suggest that relationship satisfaction might be slightly higher for the sexual minority spouses than it is for the heterosexual spouse in the relationship.”

StraightGranmother comments on above statistics – Ya think? The heterosexual spouses don’t seem that happy to me.

And this page 49
“Frequency of Intercourse Heterosexual Spouses 155
Never had sexual intercourse with their partner (n=69; 44.5%)
Less than once a month (n=25; 16.1%)
About one time a month (n=23; 14.8%)
Total = 74.4%

Greater than 4 times a week (n=8; 5.2%).
1-3 times a week (n=30; 19.4%)”
Total = 24.6%

This is getting pretty long and i don’t want to hog up to much space but really humerus is when asked how satisfied they were with their sex life (see statistics above) on a happiness scale of 1 being Terrible and 9 being Great
the sexual minority scored 6.02! I guess that indicates that they are VERY HAPPY not doing the horizontal bop with their opposite sex spouse.

I guess while they were not doing it with their spouse they were getting it from somewhere, because the sexual minorities said that 44.2% had cheated on their spouse and had an average of 3.14 same sex liaisons.

Kelly I guess we must have differing opinions on what a successful change of sexual orientation behavior is. The truth is of that of the third that attempt to stay together after disclosure that one of them is gay/lesbian, only about half remain intact for three or more years. AND look at the statistics of the half of a third, 44% go out and have same sex extramarital affairs. If you think that these are good marriages and we should keep pushing people into these marriages then your Faith has truly blinded you.
Apologies if I took to much space.

kelly
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Grannie, yes, we read the same report. The research had nothing to do with changing orientation.

If you’re going to start quoting all the numbers than you should probably compare to other marriages and by the looks of it, you would be surprised.

StraightGrandmother
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly you said, “Grannie, yes, we read the same report. The research had nothing to do with changing orientation.”

Notice Kelly my use of the word- BEHAVIOR, in this sentence, “successful change of sexual orientation BEHAVIOR.”

There is consensus among the Fundamentalist Christian Psychologists that in fact people do not change their sexual orientation, but you can work with them to change their BEHAVIOR which is what this research studied. Even Exodus agrees that you change your BEHAVIOR even though your sexual orientation does not change. Are people in fact able to change their natural sexual orientation BEHAVIOR from same sex to opposite sex, and live a happily married life with an opposite sex spouse? And how good is that marriage from the spouses point of view.

This is “your” side saying, in fact the longer the sexual minority is married they stronger same sex attractions are for them. Throckmorton will be coming out with more research that he says will say the same thing. The longer you are married contra to your natural born sexual orientation, the more gay you become. And yes a very very few minority are able to resist that, with slippage.

StraightGrandmother
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Jerry, you said, ““Finally…the majority of the participants were living satisfying ‘mixed orientation’ marriages. Not surprising that BTB left that part out.” Yeah let’s follow these couples long term and find out.

StraightGrandmother
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Are they really that happy with this set up?
Page 48
Q. Future Potential of Marital Relationship
Sexual minority group 95 responded,
Extremely Positive about their relation ship’s future (n=37; 38.8%)
Positive (n=21; 22.1%),
Total = 60.9%

Neither positive or negative (n=18; 18.9%)
Negative (n=12; 12.6%)
Extremely negative (n=7; 7.4%).
Total = 38.9%

Heterosexual Spouses 113 individuals responded
Positive about their relation-ship’s future (n=29; 25.7%).
Extremely Positive (n=23; 20.4%)
Total = 46.1%

Neither positive or negative (n=23; 20.4%)
Extremely negative (n=22; 19.5)
Negative (n=16; 14.2%)
Total = 54.1%

From the heterosexual spouses point of view things don’t look that rosy to me. I kind of interpret an answer of “neither positive or negative” as a “Lukewarm.” Certainly you can’t claim anyone who is lukewarm is in the category of a “Happy” marital relationship. I’ll eat a steak at room temperature but I would much rather it was served to me hot, I like it better hot.

StraightGrandmother
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Here Kelly this one is for you-
For Yarhouse- “In the area of sexual fidelity, sexual minority spouses reported a higher than average number of extramarital relationships (44.2% indicating an extra- marital relationship), whereas national averages are at about 10% of women and under 25% of men (Laumann et al., 1994).”

kelly
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

“the longer the sexual minority is married they stronger same sex attractions are for them”

That’s not true. The data was not statistically significant in the recent Yarhouse study.

“Notice Kelly my use of the word- BEHAVIOR”

The study did not have to do with behavior change either. That was incidental.

“In the area of sexual fidelity, sexual minority spouses reported a higher than average number of extramarital relationships (44.2% indicating an extra- marital relationship), whereas national averages are at about 10% of women and under 25% of men (Laumann et al., 1994).”

What’s your point? We know same sex attracted people have far more partners. Why would that be much different when they were married? And with disclosed orientation to boot.

In your previous data, 46/61% were positive. Unless that compares unfavorably with other types of marriages (which we know divorce at around a 50% rate), that seems pretty decent to me.

Grannie, just like Timothy, you cherry-pick or mis-interpret vignettes to fit your views. Don’t worry, you’re not alone.

“my side” merely wants folks to be able to make their own determinations with as little interference by the gay agenda as is possible.

Priya Lynn
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly/elsa/evil Becky/tom/Omar said ““my side” merely wants folks to be able to make their own determinations with as little interference by the gay agenda as is possible.”

Bullsh*t. Your side does everything it can to make life hard for gay people. Your side does everything it can to deny gay people equal rights, jobs, and places to live. Your side does everything it can to convince gay people they’ll be unhappy, die early, and be eternally tortured for being gay. If there were no interference from your side there’d be not one single person wanting to change their orientation.

StraightGrandmother
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Kelly you said, “In your previous data, 46/61% were positive. Unless that compares unfavorably with other types of marriages (which we know divorce at around a 50% rate), that seems pretty decent to me.”

Yeah, for the *sexual minority* it is 61% positive of the future potential of their Mariatal relationship. But what about the unsuspecting spouces who were told after their marriage that their spouse is not sexually attracted to them!They are NOT “Happy.”

For the sexual minority what is not to like? They don’t make love to their spouse, they sneak around on the down low, and present a heterosexual public image in their church and their community.

PLUS the 44% who cheat is not even ALL of the population sample. It is only 44% of the people who said they are NOT in an open Marriage. 15% said they were in an open marriage so there is even MORE Same Sex cheating going on.

This is NOT cherry picking Kelly this is the real results of sexual minorities attempting to change their natural sexual orientation BEHAVIOR.

Timothy Kincaid
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Guys, focusing on the minutia of the report is not the point. Yes, I mentioned the report as an illustration of Yarhouse’s interest in research and willingness to find results that conflict with the assertions that kelly and others make regularly.

But the point of the thread is that Yarhouse, while working towards information, also lends his voice to disinformation.

Please do not let a troll derail the thread.

Erin
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

“What’s your point? We know same sex attracted people have far more partners. Why would that be much different when they were married?” That is a bunch of nonsense. Such a thing cannot be measured. It’s merely a negative stereotype and holds no water. You revealed yourself and which side you’re on when you used meaningless buzz phrases like “Gay agenda.” What a joke. On this forum and the one for the Marcus Bachman post, you’ve had comment after comment dispel your ridiculous and contradictory ideas about sexual orientation. You admit human sexuality is on a continuum, then make the preposterous claim that everyone is inherently heterosexual.

Gay people should not have to try to change, period. They should not have to force themselves to be in a straight relationship. Their straight partners deserve someone who can fully love them back. And those “ex-gays” deserve to learn to accept themselves and be happy with someone they truly love. You claim people want to change because ["everyone wants to marry and have children."] Bullshit. Many many straight people have no interest in marriage or children. And as Priya told you already, plenty of homosexual people form lifetime commitments to their partners (marriages without state recognition in most states) and have children through adoption (something that is necessary with so many irresponsible, negligent and abusive straight people out there bringing children into the world)in vitro, insemination, and surrogacy (all methods also used by straight couples who can’t conceive on their own).

You have been smacked down completely on this forum, and still you ramble on with this nonsense. People on this forum have shared their life experiences which contradict your nonsense. Here is another: I am a lesbian, and am happily committed to and in love with my partner. I do not feel anything is missing. I also was raised by 2 straight parents who are still together. I was a daddy’s girl just like many many many straight women are, but I also love my mom. They did just fine raising me. Ex-gay ministries commonly tell people they need to get out of the “homosexual lifestyle” because it is a life of unhappiness and unhealthiness. That is nonsense and I refuse to recognize as credible or legitimate any individual or entity that peddles such nonsense. Plenty of factors can lead to a person’s unhappiness. Simply being gay is not one of them. Now, the backlash those people get from trolls like you is another story. Even though I know your opinion is not grounded in reality, logic, or even common decency for those of your fellow man who are gay, it still irks me. Yet, I can always walk away from my computer, look at my partner, and I know I have the love and approval of someone who really matters and I have something in life that means a whoooooole lot more to me than the thoughts of ill-informed, willfully ignorant people.

As to this study: Happiness of couples is not something one could ever measure. They relied on answers given by a small sample of such couples that exist in the world. They relied on honesty from people who would not be in their very position if they could be fully honest with themselves. You also have had many many other portions of the study pointed out to you on this forum which you have selectively disregarded.

It’s like someone else already said; Doctors don’t give underweight people diet pills or tummy tucks or lapband surgery because such people seek such treatments. It has been the consensus of those in the social sciences for years now that sexual orientations other than straight are not disorders, and those of us who have accepted ourselves and stopped listening to ancient religious dogma and homophobic rhetoric do just fine. There is no need to change orientation, and they know as well as us that it can’t be changed. A negative self image, on the other hand is an emotional stressor, and no legitimate therapist would reinforce those negative feelings, especially based on already debunked junk science, and make a client or patient feel worse about something the therapist knows he/she cant change. Like Timothy said. That is a rather disgusting lie.

Freudian theories about homosexuals have been debunked years ago. The only “therapists” that still peddle that nonsense are those driven by religion, often the same religion that teaches them the earth and humanity are 6,000 years old.

Often we find people working to change people from gay to straight are the same people or are affiliated with people who also work diligently in the public square to deny gays fair legislation that allows their relationships legal recognition, allows them to adopt unwanted children, allows them protection from being fired or denied housing solely for being gay. There is also a theory that those who work the hardest against gays are often themselves self-loathing closeted gays. This is not a theory that holds no water. Alan Chambers for example has admitted he is still a gay man. George Rekers is another example. He would not admit his attraction, but he didn’t have to. He was caught in the act and disgraced. Senator Larry Craig had anti-gay positions on those issues affecting the LGBT community. He was caught trying to hook-up in a public restroom. People who are out of the closet can date and form relationships instead of sneaking around on their spouses and having anonymous encounters. Ken Mehlman is a now-out gay man who helped form the strategy for Bush’s reelection. Part of his plan was to bring up the wedge issue of gay marriage and get extra support from Conservative voters by throwing his fellow gays under the bus. Gwen Araujo was a young transgender woman who was viciously murdered by 2 young men who had previously had sex with her. They had sex with her knowing she was still anatomically male, and did not attack and murder her until it was revealed at a party and became known to their wider group of friends that they had had sex with a transgender person. I’m sure there are more examples.

Yes, this is lengthy, but I’ve been reading the back and forth for a while now, and you have just said so many ridiculous things I felt I also needed to refute. I’m sure you aren’t going to admit any wrongs on your part ever, but at least any people on the fence about this stuff who read this forum can get the perspective of actual happy, self-accepting gay people, and they can also get the other side of the story when it comes to the claims made by ex-gay groups.

Erin
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Last comment was at Kelly^.

Timothy, Kelly’s posts speak to the heart of this ongoing debate about ex-gay groups. It has been mentioned on here by people who read other sites, that commenters like Kelly have been banned from threads. I disagree with this. We know she’s wrong. There’s no harm in letting her post and letting us refute. Obscenities, threats, hatespeech is another story, but it hasn’t gotten to that yet.

Priya Lynn
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Erin, Kelly/elsa/evil Becky/omar/tom has been much more careful about what he/she has been posting here than he/she was at Truth Wins Out. Also, he/she hasn’t been posting here under several different names to try to create the false impression that there are many on his/her side. This troll was well deserving of being banned at TWO.

Erin
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Priya, you know overall I’m on your side, and if the comments become a comment policy violation, then they should be erased, but I think it’s valuable to keep the discussion going. On another note. The really long post I wrote says it’s still awaiting moderation. I guess it’s not showing up on here yet. That makes the short comment I wrote make less sense.

Narc
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

“a Christian psychology journal”

Are there also Christian physics journals and Christian electrical engineering journals? No. The good thing about science is that it works regardless of your religion. That these researchers have to segregate theirs from real researchers just shows what’ve farce it is.

Richard Rush
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Erin said, “It has been mentioned on here by people who read other sites, that commenters like Kelly have been banned from threads. I disagree with this. . .”

The thing is that, after endless repetitions of the same points on TWO, Kelly/Elsa/evil Becky/Omar/Tom/(KEeBOT) became the blog commenting equivalent of a paintball gun used for wanton vandalism. The fact that KEeBOT posts under multiple names indicates the intent to vandalize by creating the false impression of more anti-gay commenters. But in KEeBOT’s zeal to vandalize, KEeBOT was too dim to realize how obvious it was that they came from the same place.

While I think anti-gay commenters should be allowed to express their views and respond to rebuttals, I don’t think a pro-gay blog should feel obligated to tolerate an endless repetition of harassment, badgering, and general gay-bashing which completely hijacks a conversation. The intent of those commenters is like someone who vandalizes a gay couple’s house with a paintball gun.

StraightGrandmother
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Oh My! I thought Timothy Kincaide was chastising me, that I was a troll because I posted so much detail on the research and that was incidental to the topic (the details being incidental). I was feeling real embarrassed.I am glad it wasn’t me.

All of you probably discussed this research in detail previously but I had just found this paper in the last few days so I was really fascinated with it. I am learning.

Back on topic, Yarhouse said on TV, Yarhouse: “I think our study raises that question again, says wait a minute, here’s a change effort sustained over time and there’s a pretty significant percentage of people for whom this is helpful.”

I agree with Tim, that is a very misleading statement. In fact he knows very well that the heterosexual spouses are getting hurt, 75% of the couples are not even having any type of sex life, so how can he say that a “change effort” is helping significant numbers of people? His statements are very misleading and it is annoying that he says it on a Christian tv station. And he is careful not to define the words, “change” he did that on purpose.

Theo
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

@Tim:
Good work taking this apart. A few points:

- Yarhouse’s work never seems to make it into any reputable, peer-reviewed publication that is not Christian.

- Yarhouse always works with small, extremely motivated and highly religious participants with a significant personal stake in the outcome of the research. Thus, leaving aside the veracity of the results, there is a further logical fail in attempting to claim that these results have any bearing on the population at large.

- To my knowledge, at no time has Yarhouse ever declared that he has found a gay person who has actually become a heterosexual. No asterisks, no bizarre “I’m-only-straight-for-my-wife” constructions, no “complexity”. Just the basic gay-to-straight change that these folks are always saying is “possible”.

The only people whom I have heard proclaim themselves to be 100% straight are a few ex-gays who make their living off of this, numbering perhaps a half dozen to a dozen in number (Richard Cohen, Joe Dallas, Anthony Falzorano, etc.). As far as I know, none of them has submitted to an independent examination to confirm their claims.

@Kelly:

If all humans are heterosexual, then then these wouldn’t be – as you call them – “mixed marriages.” In fact, there would be no such thing. Try to keep your delusions straight (no pun intended).

jc
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

out of curiosity, i wonder how ‘kelly’ comes to the conclusion that ‘attractions being fluid’ is an argument against ‘attractions being innate’. using one statement to disprove the other makes absolutely no sense.

and tiresome troll is tiresome…

Ben In Oakland
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

jc: I addressed that issue at TWO with her. I was going to do only a portion of what I wrote, but hell, here’s the whole thing.

, the actual issue is innateness, whatever that might mean.

I’m 61 years old. Long before I knew about boys and girls together, long before I had ever heard the word homosexual, long before I thought boys could like other boys the way boys like girls, long before there was ANYTHING except the most covert knowledge of something that, in a vague, general sort of a way, might be termed same sex oriented…

…long before ANY of that, when I was four, I knew I was gay. I didn’t know what it was, I didn’t know what it meant, but I certainly knew IT. And as clearly as I knew that, I knew I damn well better not talk about IT. Certainly, no one else did.

I have observed an apparent contradiction: while I believe that the vast majority of people are bisexual to some extent, I believe that relatively few people actually double their chances for a date on Saturday night. Not that the actively bisexual don’t exist, but that most people who call themselves bisexual really tend more one way than the other, and most people who might be termed bisexual by others are in fact predominant hetero or homo for large periods of their lives.

I have known a number of men (I know more men) who were bi-but-primarily-hetero (and possibly exclusively hetero) for a good portion of their lives, coming out later in life. Most have said that they always knew they were gay, but for whatever reason, acted out as hetero. I have known almost no one who started out gay but went the other direction, though I have known a few. And these people were not just straight-for-pay, like certain ex-gay legends in their own media.

I have also known many men like myself, with just a little bit of heterosexual experience which I enjoyed thoroughly, but was completely uninterested in repeating. By no stretch of the imagination would or could I call myself bisexual.

My quite gay husband actually had an affair (for some reason I cannot begin to fathom) with a woman before he met me, and before that he had been in a gay relationship for 15 years. We’re going on 10 years ourselves. So, a bit more bisexual than me, but still, a big queer just like me.

We are both of us quite gay, quite innately gay, and quite unable to change the fact.

And I also know a few men who had a gay experience or two, but decided it wasn’t either them or for them. Also an innate thing.

There might be a fluid sexuality gene, and there might not. There might be a homosexual gene, their might be a heterosexual gene. There might not. There isn’t a gene for left-handedness, but no one would argue that it is not innate, AND immutable.

It’s quite possible that culture may have a role in the self-perception of homosexuality. (As an aside, and in answer to you, I sincerely doubt politics does). As a sociologist, I have certainly considered it. But i have concluded that the role culture has is how same-sex attraction and/or homosexuality is expressed, not whether it exists in individuals. I don’t think that, apart from the issue of orientation, that there is any great difference between the great mass of gay people and the great mass of heterosexuals. And I really doubt that people now feel things differently than people of whatever time before did, though those people may have had different cultures and worldviews. There is great evidence that gay people have existed in every time and in every culture. Put those facts together, and the obvious becomes more so:

heterosexuality for everyone is not a fact, it is an assumption, one that 2) ignores the fact it is very obvious that human sexuality encompasses a range from one to the other, plus everything in between, plus all of the kinks and fetishes and interests and cultural expectations and familial and religious upbringing that muddy the waters still further.

Putting it another way, heterosexuality isn’t normal, it’s just distressingly common, and exclusive heterosexuality is probably nowhere near as common as many people would like to think.

Regarding the politics of identity—that’s just another way of saying that the personal is political, and vice versa. No news on that since 1968. But that does not lessen or disparage either identity or politics. But if you are going to speak about identity politics, than don’t forget to look at the identity politics of the nominally heterosexual majority, which has resulted in the always present, always assumed, but otherwise wholly imaginary superiority of the nominally exclusively heterosexual, and more importantly, the concomitant social privileging of heterosexuals and the dis-privileging of everyone else. If that weren’t the case, we would not be having the marriage battles we are having, nor would we be having to suffer with the ignorance of Pawlenty or the money-grubbing, smug self-righteousness of Princess Porcine Polly, nor would our country be suffering over the disinterest in our real problems in favor of the imaginary threat of treating gay people like human beings.

I’ll eave you with this quotation from Dr. Francis Collins, Evangelical man about town and former head of the Human Grenome Project:

It troubles me greatly to learn that anything I have written would cause anguish for you or others who are seeking answers to the basis of homosexuality. The words quoted by NARTH all come from the Appendix to my book “The Language of God” (pp. 260-263), but have been juxtaposed in a way that suggests a somewhat different conclusion that I intended. I would urge anyone who is concerned about the meaning to refer back to the original text.
The evidence we have at present strongly supports the proposition that there are hereditary factors in male homosexuality — the observation that an identical twin of a male homosexual has approximately a 20% likelihood of also being gay points to this conclusion, since that is 10 times the population incidence. But the fact that the answer is not 100% also suggests that other factors besides DNA must be involved. That certainly doesn’t imply, however, that those other undefined factors are inherently alterable.
Your note indicated that your real interest is in the truth. And this is about all that we really know. No one has yet identified an actual gene that contributes to the hereditary component (the reports about a gene on the X chromosome from the 1990s have not held up), but it is likely that such genes will be found in the next few years.

BTW, Miz Kelly never addressed any of this.

Ben In Oakland
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

Oh, hell. i’ll repost the other as well. no one responded to that, either. I thought– or so I thought– that I haI’m in the mood to write a little bit. So, here you go. I’m going to assume that you are an intellectually honest person and willing to learn something, and not either the shill for the anti-ex-gay industry that your postings would indicate you to be, or the garden variety bigot with a little education and an axe or two to grind. We’ve seen both.

You have made the statement that people can change, and they should be allowed to. You have made the statement: “Ben, 1000s of people have left the gay life and are leading a satisfied non-gay life. Thousands of people, through I assume some sort of ex-gay therapy and/or prayer. Is this a fair statement of your truth? I am quoting you.

Here we come to the first problem. Where are these thousands of people? I have heard people like you say this many times, but they never answer. Why is it that Jones and Yarhouse, certainly plugged into the evangelical and anti-ex-gay worlds as they are, could only find 100 people to participate in their groundbreaking study? Where outside of the anti-ex-gay imagination are these thousands of people? I can assure you if they were available, Exodus would be parading them down Broadway every Sunday. But the only people who seem to show up are earning their livings off of being exgay. The same 50 faces do not a parade make.

You say that people can change, and that thousands are leading a satisfied non-gay life. These are not even close to being the same thing, now, are they? It is less than ingenuous to say that they are, or to confuse the two.

If change means only that they are not living a gay life, why then, you really don’t need either prayer or therapy for that. You just cut off all your gay friends, don’t go to gay events, don’t read gay books or see gay movies. Don’t have gay sex. Piece of cake. If you can’t manage that, than you have other problems that are far more serious. But if they still want love-sex-romance with someone of the same gender, even if they are not having it, these people are still gay. Changing behavior does not change sexual orientation, though it might be satisfying.

So, let us kick it up a notch. Suppose you are someone who desperately wants to change from homosexual to heterosexual. I know of no gay person who has to try to be gay, nor do I know of any straight person who has to try to be straight. So, you may act straight, pretend to be straight, and appear to the world that you are straight because you are trying so goddamned hard to be straight, or at least believe that you are. Straight with issues is the haggard dodge. But if your attractions are still down on their knees in the mensroom at the KwikeeMart, you are not straight. You may still not be having sex, but you haven’t changed from homosexual to heterosexual, you have merely changed from functioning homo to non-functioning homo. If you are really honest, you might admit that you are functioning heterosexually, but it’s a struggle every day. So how straight is that?

So let us kick it up another notch. You are not trying to be straight, you ARE straight—George Rekers style. You have actually cured people of their sexual problems, through prayer and reparative therapy. You testify in court, if by testify you mean lying, and not the ancient meaning of testify, which is to swear an oath to your liege lord by holding his testicles in your hot little hand. That, I’m pretty sure, George was willing to do.

You may marry a woman, Ted Haggard style—now there is a man that knows how to pray, and has the whole of the evangelical and exgay world at his beck and call. Yet, despite all his prayer, his resources, and his multiple declarations that he was cured and, I quote, 100% heterosexual, he still isn’t, and he admits it.

You may condemn homosexuality in the darkest of terms, with Jesus at your side sternly wagging his finger—Eddie Long style, Lonnie Latham style, Catholic priest style, too many dreary pray-to-Jesus others in their own particular styles.

And every one of these jokers was as straight as straight could be, and prayed and prayed and prayed and prayed, thank Jesus for the straightness of their righteousness, until they were caught in a mensroom, or diddling the choir boy, or cruising for prostitutes, or sin and degradation after distressingly dreary, and not particularly imaginative, degradation.

So this is the problem with prayer and reparative therapy—they don’t actually seem to work at least so far as we have examined them. So let us look at the last group of people, the ones that are invisible but you nevertheless insist exist by the thousands. (By the way, I do not claim that change isn’t possible. In a world where carpenters can be resurrected, anything is possible. But they seem to be available by special order on certain days. One cannot find them wholesale).

Jones and Yarhouse have already studied these people, and found that change occurred for only 13% of their 100 subjects, and that it was difficult, ambiguous, and complicated. But I’m going to propose a super study. It will be open to anyone who has taken any formal action or program to pray or therapay away the gay in any way, to change from gay to straight, by means of some faith-based program.

The study will be simple, and consist of three questions and a simple lab test.

1) Were you or are you homosexual in thought, word, and deed? (Gotta have a baseline, and I want to see those thousands).

2) By means of the program you joined, were you, or are you now, able to change yourself from homosexual to completely heterosexual, no backsliding, no gay thoughts, words, or deeds, only heterosexual ones? (Because if any of those things are happening, you haven’t changed. Wanting to change, trying to change, thinking about changing—those things are not changing.)

3) For those who have changed from homosexual to heterosexual, one last question. “Are you willing swear on peril of losing your immortal soul, by your faith in Jesus Christ, by all that you hold holy and true, that you no longer have any homosexual desire, that you are completely heterosexual in thought, word, and deed. Because if a
ny of those things are happening…

4) And finally, because I’m a cynic, for those who are able to swear, at least for the men, one of those weenie-excitement-thingamajigs just to double check, at least the men. I don’t now what you do for women.

When I see that study done, then I will believe change is possible.
d a few good thouts.

Priya Lynn
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

StraightGrandmother, your posts were well informed and helpful, I really appreciated them, please keep it up.

Bruce Garrett
July 17th, 2011 | LINK

out of curiosity, i wonder how ‘kelly’ comes to the conclusion that ‘attractions being fluid’ is an argument against ‘attractions being innate’. using one statement to disprove the other makes absolutely no sense.

This.

Jimmy
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

The Bachmann subject gives rise to a bugaboo of mine that compels me to make a point on semantics. When writers mention heterosexuals, the converse of that is not “gay”; it is “homosexual” or “bisexual”. To be understood as “gay” means that, to some degree, an identification with community exists. GAY is more than just clinical understandings of orientation. One might wish, wrong headed as it is, to pray away the homosexual attraction, but that person would not likely identify as gay.

Timothy Kincaid
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

Erin,

we seldom ban anyone. we’ve been very fortunate.

Straight grandmother,

your comments are not trolling, they are intended to express your opinions based on your analysis. like priya lynn (and likely many others) i find them informative, well thought out, and articulate.

kelly, on the other hand, is not interested in facts or information but simply uses such things as a means to stir up others and distract and confuse. That is what makes kelly a troll.

But i do want to quibble with one of your comments. Yarhouse says that the programs are “helpful”. That is careful language, though deceptive. I do agree that many find the programs useful and helpful in their efforts to live according to a conservative Christian sexual ethic – which is what Yarhouse is speaking of. And I don’t fault them for that. But they are not “helpful” in what the purport to do, change orientation.

Timothy Kincaid
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

Narc

Are there also Christian physics journals and Christian electrical engineering journals? No.

I don’t know, but it wouldn’t surprise me. Like any community, Christian electrical engineers probably have interest in how their science speaks to their faith.

But psychology seems to me to be a field that is so broad in it relevance that pretty much any group (gays, women, muslims, Irish, african americans, probably even left handed folk) have specialists and specific issues.

Timothy Kincaid
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

Erin, sorry for the delay in approving your comment. They can go to moderation for a number of different reasons (length is what i think sent yours there) automatically but they have to be taken from moderation manually.

Timothy Kincaid
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

Jimmy,

Good point. I try to avoid “homosexual” as it can cause those who are just coming here and unfamiliar with BTB to assume that we are anti-gay, as the word is seldom used outside that circle.

But when posed against heterosexual, homosexual is more accurate and, as you note, having a homosexual orientation does not indicate that you identify as gay or are part of the gay community.

I’ll try to be more careful.

But as far as Wayne’s “pray away the gay” phrase, if you think about it, it’s the gay that they really object to and is their real objective. Once you no longer identify as gay but “identify with Christ” then you are pursuing holiness and can spend decades as a successful celibate.

Darina
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

A question out of curiosity: Is there anybody else here who isn’t a native speaker of English, and there is no such problem with the word “homosexual” in their native language? Or shall I ask if anybody other than the native speakers of English has that problem in their culture that is reflected into the language?

“Gay identity” vs “Christian identity” is something so culturally foreign for me too… it takes me a huge effort to even keep that perspective in mind long enough. But I guess this is a peculiarity of somebody who lives in a very secular post-communist culture.

Sorry if this is a digression.

Jimmy
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

“But as far as Wayne’s “pray away the gay” phrase, if you think about it, it’s the gay that they really object to and is their real objective.”

In that sense, yes, I agree.

Ed Myhro
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

Wow, This is all starting to make my head hurt! Here’s what I know.
Been different since about 7 yrs. old, learned that I was ‘gay’ since 12. Between 7 and 12 I was trying to figure out what it was.
Came out at 20
Went back into closet at 21 to marry because God and Society said you need to. Raised 3 children, been married 30 years. Came back out of closet at 55.
Still married, minus the sex, and bottom line, gay after all these years. I tried very hard, therapy and all to change to be heterosexual. It only made it worse. I have alway’s been gay and will continue to be until the day I close my eyes forever.
Only thing is, you can’t get back all the lost time in your life to be true to yourself and happy with the way you are.

Darina
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

Did I miss something in the actual text of the study, or did I get it right that the author never mentioned who was male and who is female? It’s clear that bouth “heterosexual spouses” and “sexual minorities” were mixed male-femal groups though.

I would be interested in the individual Kinsey rating of each of the participants, to see just how many of them were some degree of bisexual and what difference it made from those who were purely homosexual.

Timothy Kincaid
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

DArina,

good points in both comments.

Jim Burroway
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

“Kelly”, whoever he or she is, is now on moderation for multiple abuses to our comments policy. Furthermore, “Kelly” provides a fake email address with his/her comments, which indicates that he/she wishes not to be held accountable for his/her actions.

If “Kelly” wishes to post comments which comply with our comments policy — regardless of whether her comments agree or disagree with the posts or with others — we will release those comments from the moderatio queue. Trolling behavior however is not allowed.

Furthermore, by his/her own admission, he/she was also been banned from other web sites for engaging in similar actions and has actively tried various tactics to work around those bans. Attempts to do so here will not be tolerated, and will result in reporting his/her i.p. address to his/her internet service provider for harassment.

StraightGrandmother
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

Whew! Thanks for the affirmation.
A very interesting statement from Dr Warren Throckmorton on CNN’d Belief Blog

http://religion.blogs.cnn.com/2011/07/18/amid-bachmann-controversy-many-christians-cool-to-conversion-therapy-for-gays/

These words of Dr. Throckmorton literally jumped off the page at me

“Some Christian counselors have moved away from reparative therapy and have adopted a therapeutic approach that Throckmorton describes as a “congruence paradigm.” The model encourages counselors to appreciate a client’s wishes to harmonize their values, often shaped by religion, and their sexuality.

Under the congruence approach, a religious person who considers homosexuality sinful could attempt to square their beliefs and sexuality by trying to remain celibate. A bisexual client who perceives a similar conflict could try to focus on heterosexual relationships.”

I just started studying ex-gay within the last month or so (as my name indicates I really am str8 and a grandmother)because, “You can just change” is used as an excuse to deny Equal Civil Rights to gays, lesbains, bi-sexual and transgender citizens. I went into my research slanted towards, “I don’t think they can change” but was still open minded. I still had not decided if it really was possible for gays to change until I read that Yarhouse research.

It was only yesterday that I made up my mind. I am now in the “No” camp. Any therapy that has a goal of getting a person to BEHAVE contra their same sex attractions is then going to involve another person. And as Yarhouse’s research clearly shows this other person, the heterosexual spouse is going to be harmed. I do not believe it is ethical for a medical person to counsel a person in therapy knowing that, although their patient may report that s/he has a better life, outwardly living contra to their natural sexual orientation, the spouse does NOT. I think it is unethical of them to spring their “little project” on unsuspecting heterosexuals. Those heterosexual spouses never can get those years back again. The numbers are just not there to justify this type of therapy and the risk of harm is documented.

Timothy Kincaid
July 18th, 2011 | LINK

SG,

Unless I’m mistaken Yarhouse and Throckmorton work with already married couples mostly.

I don’t think that they encourage unmarried gay men to marry women… probably because they work with those who have. I think they go with celibacy as a reasonable expectation and if that’s what someone wants, well, there are a lot of people who are celibate for one reason or another.

If you are interested in knowing more about spouses, the Straight Spouse Network is an information source. They are a group whose spouses came out.

Interestingly, they’re pretty pro-gay politically. They figure that ‘if society accepts a gay man then he won’t marry me!’

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