Skip to comments.The Closed Mind of the NMHA: Is Being Ex-Gay Hazardous to Your Mental Health?
Posted on 06/02/2004 8:56:04 PM PDT by scripter
Is it hazardous to ones mental health to change sexual identity from gay to straight? The National Mental Health Association, the nations oldest and largest mental health advocacy group made this charge in a recent statement to a gay oriented publication. In a May 28 article by Adrian Brune in the "Washington Blade," Lee Ann Browning-McNee, spokesperson for the NMHA was quoted as saying: PFOX (Parents & Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays) talks a lot about gay reform, and we think those messages can actually be damaging to someones mental health. If you look at statistics of suicide, its easy to conclude that anyone who is sending out the message that homosexuality is wrong should not be at conferences supporting good mental health.
First, a little background. PFOX, an advocacy organization for those who have or are in the process of reorienting their sexuality from gay to straight was denied space to exhibit at the NMHAs annual convention. In this Blade article, Ms. Browning-McNee was explaining the NMHA rationale for this exclusion. So the mental health group seems to hold two related opinions: first, talking about gay reform is damaging to mental health and second, that anyone who asserts homosexuality is wrong or undesireable in some way undermines the mental health of others, maybe even leading to their suicide.
Lets look at the first claim. Those who talk most about sexual identity change are those who have changed. In fact, 200 of them talked to Dr. Robert Spitzer in a research study published in the October, 2003 issue of the "Archives of Sexual Behavior." According to Dr. Spitzers work, 43% of men and 47% of women were markedly or extremely depressed before entering counseling to help transition from gay to straight. After the efforts to change were completed, only 1% of men and 4% of women felt depressed at the extreme level. Other participants reported similar but less dramatic improvements in their overall outlook and mental health. Now certainly there are some people who are not helped by such efforts, but why ignore the facts that for some, gay change has had a positive influence?
On the second rationale, Ms. Browning-McNee raises the specter of suicide to discourage the expression of any negativity concerning homosexuality. This is a tactic oft used in matters of morality. When one side declares a moral position, the other side claims offense to the point of suicidal despair. Ms. McNee thinks those who are ex-gay are wrong and misguided. Is she then responsible for undermining the mental health of ex-gays? No doubt she has made some of them angry but I dont think I would hold her responsible for a depression.
Looking at the NMHA website concerning suicide, sexual orientation is not listed as one of the risk factors. However, being depressed is mentioned as one of the primary risk factors. If depression is a risk factor and ex-gays have reduced depression compared to their prior state, then wouldnt becoming ex-gay actually reduce the risk of suicide for these individuals?
Admittedly the relationship between suicide risk, depression and sexual orientation is complicated and unsettled. We do know from research in the Netherlands that, despite social approval, homosexuals have more depression than straights. Some investigators have reported an increased link between suicide attempts and homosexuality. Given the already known link between depression and suicide, this could make sense no matter what the social climate for gays. However, some researchers dispute the idea of a link. Notably, after a 2001 review of the studies on suicide and homosexuality, gay researcher Ritch Savin-Williams asserted, the assertion that sexual-minority youths as a class of individuals are at increased risk for suicide is not warranted. He also asserted that sexual minority youth are more likely to exaggerate suicide attempts than straight youth, further complicating the picture. As a psychology professor, the picture is anything but clear. One thing I can see is that more research unbridled by ideology is needed.
Alas, political concerns seem to be at work in the NMHA position concerning ex-gays. Given the evidence that for some people mental health is actually enhanced by a gay to straight transition, why wouldnt a responsible mental health organization want to study the matter further?
Looks to me like the NMHA could be hazardous to an open mind.
Hey! No fair! You just want to pingify the good stuff...
Check post #2 - you're included in the pinglist too!
I think societies desire to become grandmothers will beat out societies desire to bugger.
I can't comment from personal experience, but I willing to hazard a guess: probably a step in the right direction.
Hey, finders keepers. :-)
I hope and pray you are right. It always grieves my spirit to read from fellow freepers who have already bought the lie.
It's called a refusal to admit they've been wrong all along.
The coversion from degeneracy is also a balm to their immortal soul. Liberals don't like that, don'tcha know!
Haven't seen you much since you supplied me with pro-life materials after we left Lucy's World to come here. You sent me a pix of a surgery where a fetus (i.e. very, very small human) had wrap his or her hand around the surgeon's finger. I know for a fact that picture made it to the Supreme Court steps.
Thank you so very much.
In a May 28 article by Adrian Brune in the "Washington Blade," Lee Ann Browning-McNee, spokesperson for the NMHA was quoted as saying: PFOX (Parents & Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays) talks a lot about gay reform, and we think those messages can actually be damaging to someones mental health. If you look at statistics of suicide, its easy to conclude that anyone who is sending out the message that homosexuality is wrong should not be at conferences supporting good mental health.
No, Lee Ann it's not "those messages" that are affecting their mental health, it's the lack of treatment due to the fact that the homosexual community infiltrated the APA (and other professional organizations) and were successful in getting homosexuality removed from the DSM.
And, Lee Ann, we know that the homosexual community is very adept at twisting statistics of suicide to support their agenda ( example posted here ).
"Two recent studies published in the Archives of General Psychiatry found higher rates of psychiatric disorders among homosexually oriented men and women than among the heterosexual population (Herrell 1999 & Fergusson 1999). Those articles mentioned that a third study, not yet published, had confirmed their findings...
"The findings," says the authors, "support the assumption that people with same-sex sexual behavior are at greater risk for psychiatric disorders."
The researchers note that when the American Psychiatric Association debated in 1973 about whether or not to delete homosexuality from the diagnostic manual, many psychiatrists supported deletion because of the supposed "equality in mental health status of homosexual and heterosexual people." Yet there is now substantial disconfirming evidence of that equality in mental-health status, the authors say, and "recent studies applying a more rigorous methodology" show that there is "substantial support" for the idea that gay men and lesbians are, indeed, less psychologically healthy than heterosexuals.
Sandfort et al. list other studies which support their findings. In one, "young people with a homosexual or bisexual orientation were found to be at increased risk of major depression, generalized anxiety disorder, conduct disorder, substance abuse/dependence, and suicidal behaviors."
In another study, "middle-aged men who reported ever having had male sex partners were at higher lifetime risk for various suicidal symproms...even after controlling for substance abuse and depressive symptoms."
The authors of the Sandfort study suggest a number of possible reasons for the difference in mental-health status. They suggest loneliness, difficulty in finding and keeping longterm partners due to the lesser stability of gay relationships, different social norms of the gay world (i.e., the acceptance of promiscuity), and the stress of social stigma--although the latter is, the authors admit, considerably less of a factor in The Netherlands (from which they drew the study population) than in other Western countries..."
"... Neither of these bodies of evidence is decisive. To be sure, findings supporting a biological contribution to homosexuality undermine the early psychoanalytic explanations. But the evidence is not all in, and even today it is too early to prejudge the issue. More important, even if homosexuality is shown to be genetically based, biological determination does not preclude a condition from being a disorder or from being treated. Some forms of depression and anxiety are known to have biological causes but are nevertheless considered psychiatric disorders and are often effectively treated, both biologically and psychologically.
The second argument, that homosexuality is not associated with other conditions recognized as psychopathologies, also falls short. It begs the question as to whether homosexuality in and of itself is a psychopathology. From the fact that a person can be perfectly healthy except for a broken bone, we would not argue that fractures are not medical problems. One could just as well argue that because many people with phobic anxieties manage to cope well, live full lives, and show no symptoms other than their narrowly focused anxiety, phobias are not psychopathologies. Furthermore, several of the disorders retained in DSMII also do not necessarily involve subjective distress (e.g., fetishism).
We are also aware of the vicious attacks on anyone who opposes the homosexual propganda that "change is impossible:"
Berzon was incensed that the magazine would accept an advertisement for A Parent's Guide, a book which views homosexuality as a developmental condition rather than a core identity. Berzon claimed that Epstein's magazine should have refused to print the ad. She threatened to organize a boycott against the magazine, and then followed up by sending out a flurry of postings on gay and lesbian internet sites in order to gain support for an organized boycott... A story about the conflict was published in the December 10th issue of the gay magazine The Advocate, by columnist Michelangelo Signorile."When the editor in chief of Psychology Today reveals his support for so-called conversion therapies to turn gays straight, what does that say about the state of American psychology?" asked Signorile"Signorile then described Epstein and his work as editor of Psychology Today in unflattering terms. He said the editor was a publicity seeker who "might view such a position [advertising a non-gay-affirmative book] as an attention grabber." However, Signorile warned, editor Epstein would do well to remember what the gay community had succeeded in doing not so long ago to Dr. Laura. In a series of acrimonious and very public protests, gay activists were instrumental in forcing Dr. Laura's television show off the air by flooding the airwaves, the print media, and the streets outside the TV studio with protests that frightened off her advertisers...
Your research is awesome. Irrefutable. The only argument the pro-"gay" crowd can possibly come up with is name calling.
When debating with them, it is noteworthy that they NEVER, not once, debate facts. They cannot. Their arguments are based on skewed emotion, lies, and slogans.
They have not a leg to stand on.
Your research deservers a very wide audience.
When debating with them, it is noteworthy that they NEVER, not once, debate facts. They cannot. Their arguments are based on skewed emotion, lies, and slogans.
Indeed. In her book "The Death of Right and Wrong: Exposing the Left's Assault on Our Culture and Values ," Tammy Bruce wrote:
"What I had been unable to articulate about my colleagues on the Left has been expressed by Dr. M. Scott Peck in his discussion of evil in his book People of the Lie. Peck, who is unapologetic in his blending of psychiatry and theology, says evil people (as he terms them) have "an unshakable will to be right and will not consider the possibility that they are wrong. ... Their main weapon, interestingly enough, is the lie with which they distort reality to look good to themselves, and to confuse others." Add to that the phenomenom of groupthink, and you have what the Left offers us today." (Pg. 30)
The section entitled "Damage and the Left's Malignant Narcissism" (Pg. 26) is also very revealing.
For additional info on "The Death of Right and Wrong: Exposing the Left's Assault on Our Culture and Values," see reply numbers 216, 226, 264 and 271 in scripter's Homosexual Agenda: Categorical Index of Links (Revision 1.1) ( Note: reply 246 is also useful ).
Tammy Bruce is amazing. I've got to read her book. I just bought "The Hidden Hitler" yesterday - found it at a used bookstore, can tell it's never been cracked open!
I read "The People of the Lie" a few years ago, I wouldn't mind going through it again.
Some people DO choose evil. Actually, my understanding is that if a person doesn't voluntarily and consciously choose the side of Good, they by default choose the side of dark, since we are all born into ignorance. Kind of like the doctrine of "original sin" except that we can't blame any forefathers or foremothers, we chose to come to the world of birth and death ourselves. But that's a detail - the important point is that the "natural man" slides downward unless he/she makes that choice to go towards truth and light, or as many would say - (self included) - God.
BTTT ... bookmarking for better access to your excellent references.
May 18, 2004-- In the alphabet soup that makes up the Washington, D.C. political lobbying scene, one of the more respected acronyms is NMHA. The National Mental Health Association has been around since 1950, and has been instrumental in advocating for the needs of the mentally ill.
As president of the American Mental Health Counselors Association several years ago, I was glad to work along side the NMHA on initiatives designed to improve access to mental-health care for all citizens.
Given the serious work that this organization does, I am shocked and disappointed to learn that the NMHA has determined to discriminate against an organization working to promote awareness of former homosexuals -- the "Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays" (PFOX).
No Convention Booth Space for Ex-Gays
PFOX applied for booth space to exhibit as this summer's NMHA convention and was turned down. The group was not rejected because of space limitations but because the NMHA does not like the PFOX view of sexual orientation change. That's right; because PFOX believes some gays have changed to become straight, or as many former homosexuals refer to themselves, "ex-gay," the NMHA rejected their application.
In a letter received May 17, Becky Roser, Marketing Manager with the NMHA, wrote, "NMHA feels that your organization's principles diverge from our core mission." After examining the PFOX website, Ms. Roser wrote, "having PFOX exhibit at our conference would indicate to participants that NMHA condones 'reparative' or 'corrective' therapy. As this is not the case, it would be disingenuous to have your organization participate in our Annual Conference..."
Ms. Roser enclosed the NMHA pamphlet, "What Does Gay Mean?" to present the NMHA "viewpoint on gay and lesbian issues."
I wonder how many of the 340 local NMHA affiliates know that there is an official "viewpoint on gay and lesbian issues?"
What is the core mission of NMHA? According to the NMHA website, NMHA "is dedicated to promoting mental health, preventing mental disorders, and achieving victory over mental illness through advocacy, education, research and service." Knowing both organizations, I cannot see how PFOX diverges from the mission of NMHA. In fact, judging from the publication "What Does Gay Mean?" the NMHA could use some assistance from groups like PFOX to better address its mission with the subset of people who have gone from gay to straight.
Finding of the Spitzer Study:
For instance, the NMHA booklet makes a sweeping but undocumented claim: "...attempts to 'cure' lesbians and gay men may help change sexual behavior temporarily but will also create emotional trauma." If the NMHA were true to their mission, they would read psychiatrist Robert Spitzer's study of ex-gays carefully. In his work, published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior in October, 2003, Dr. Spitzer found that before entering counseling, over 40% of his former homosexual research participants were markedly to extremely depressed. After they had reoriented their sexual preferences, 1% of men and 4% of women were depressed at this level. This is a striking change.
Clearly, seeking the counseling rejected by the NMHA helped Dr. Spitzer's participants alleviate a condition about which the NMHA is supposed to care a great deal -- clinical depression.
Some might protest: "The NMHA is a private group. They can do what they want." I suppose the jury is out on that issue, in that PFOX has not decided whether to file a discrimination complaint. However, over the past several years, the NMHA has received substantial funding from the federal government. Is it proper for the Center for Mental Health Services and the Departments of Justice, Education and Health and Human Services to give millions to the NMHA, and then for the NMHA to discriminate based on sexual-orientation perspective?
The question remains: Why does the NMHA want to stay in the dark about ex-gays?
Apparently, the NMHA would like to pretend that ex-gays don't exist. Given NMHA's roots in successfully battling the stigma of mental illness, it seems a sad and illogical twist for this great organization to reject a group of people without even meeting them.
Warren Throckmorton, PhD is Director of College Counseling and an Associate Professor of Psychology at Grove City College. Professor, counselor and columnist, Dr. Throckmorton is the producer of the Truth Comes Out, a spoken word CD geared to young adults concerning sexual orientation. His columns have been published in over 40 newspapers and numerous websites such as Worldnetdaily.com, Christianpost.com, Townhall.com, Michnews.com and Americandaily.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org or via his website: http://www.drthrockmorton.com.
Updated: 18 May 2004
Homosexual Agenda Re-Ping! I pung you all to this thread already, but there is so much information that EdReform keeps posting!
Read his post right before this one, and a couple above it. So the National Mental Health Association shuts out an organization that *helps* homosexuals change! It doesn't agree with their "mission".
What the heck is their mission? Obviously not to help dysfunctional people become well-adjusted and happy. Coudl their mission be to normalize perversion? Could that be it?
Let me know if anyone wants on/off this pinglist.
What the heck is their mission? Obviously not to help dysfunctional people become well-adjusted and happy. Could their mission be to normalize perversion? Could that be it?
Here's some additional information from the National Mental Health Association web site that will help to answer your question. I've added highlighting to point out the usual homosexual agenda propaganda.
"Questions and Answers
... What makes someone gay?
Some people believe gay people are born gay, while others believe they choose to be gay. Most researchers believe sexual orientation is complex, and that biology plays an important role. This means that many people are born with their sexual orientation, or that its established at an early age.
Can parents make a child gay?
You cant raise a child to be gay. Nor can parents or therapists change a young persons sexual orientation, just as they cant change their eye color, race or height.
What about the "cures" for homosexuality Ive read about?
No research has shown that "reparative therapy" (psychotherapy to eliminate individuals sexual desires for their own sex) or "transformational ministry" (the use of religion to eliminate those desires) is successful. In fact, every mainstream mental health and medical organization says these methods may be harmful. They warn that attempts to "cure" lesbians and gay men may help change sexual behavior temporarily but will also create emotional trauma...
Is homosexuality unhealthy?
All sexual behaviors have health risks, and its important for teens to know this. But being gay does not make someone unhealthy or unhappy. What is unhealthy is prejudice against gays and lesbians. This prejudice can be especially damaging for young gay people who are often harassed and made to feel ashamed of who they are. In 1973, the American Psychiatric Association recognized homosexuality as a normal human behavior, and since then all other major health professional organizations have supported this fact..."
( You can read some of their additional propa..., I mean information by clicking on the links posted on that page )
An excerpt from "Bullying in Schools: Harassment Puts Gay Youth At Risk"
"While trying to deal with all the challenges of being a teenager, gay/ lesbian/ bisexual/ transgender (GBLT) teens additionally have to deal with harassment, threats, and violence directed at them on a daily basis. They hear anti-gay slurs such as homo, faggot and sissy about 26 times a day or once every 14 minutes. Even more troubling, a study found that thirty-one percent of gay youth had been threatened or injured at school in the last year alone!2...
Help end bullying at your school with the following actions:
- Ask school personnel to have a discussion at an assembly or an after school activity about gay prejudice.
- Help start a Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) chapter at your local high school. Youth whose schools had these kinds of groups were less likely to have reported feeling unsafe in their schools.12
- Arrange for a group like GLSEN to present bullying prevention activities and programs at your school.
From the Georgia affiliate of the National Mental Health Association:
"Often times, religious lies are often utilized to justify homophobic responses and treatment for homosexuality. Here are the lies and truth..."
Are you seeing the pattern here? From the American Psychiatric Association in 1973, to the American Psychological Association, to the American Academy of Pediatrics, to the NMHA today, the infiltration and co-opting of these and other professional organizations, and their inter-organization cooperation, has been part of an extensive, well planned and well financed campaign by the homosexual community to "normalize" homosexuality, based not on science but on radical political and social activism.
Now you see the media; GLSEN, HRC, GLAAD, NGLTF and other homosexual organizations; public school officials and teachers; the National Education Association (with assistance from their homosexual cacus); and the sheeple all parroting the "homosexual is normal" mantra. How do they 'know?' Why these "professional" organizations told them so, by providing bogus studies, brochures, spokespersons and other media that proclaim "we, the professional mental health and medical organizations, have studied and found every aspect of homosexuality to be just as normal as heterosexuality." ( Remember the highlight quoted above? every mainstream mental health and medical organization ).
The infiltration and co-opting of the professional organizations was the precursor to their master plan - taking control of the public schools in order to have access to the children. As you know from the extensive documentation posted in scripter's Homosexual Agenda: Categorical Index of Links (Revision 1.1), GLSEN is now entrenched in public education. And as was seen above, schools are encouraged by the National Mental Health Association to have GLSEN come in and set up GSA's and other programs. Remember that next time the GLSEN gang claims that GSA's are student organized and led.
Also, do you remember what Tammy Bruce wrote in her book The Death of Right and Wrong: Exposing the Left's Assault on Our Culture and Values?
"Between GLSEN, the Happy Penis, Phil, and now Kami, I'd say the Gay Elite have your children as a captive audience. Whether you like it or not, they have appointed themselves your children's moral tutor." (pg.119)
A few other references to support the documentation above:
"... If such changes are due to social and/or political activism, neither the goal of individual liberties nor the best interests of society are served. These changes would remove from psychoanalysis and psychiatry entire areas of scientific progress, rendering chaotic fundamental truths about unconscious psychodynamics, as well as the interrelationship between anatomy and psychosexual identity.
The tragic consequences of the politicizing of the sexual area of diagnosis have already occurred, as homosexuality has been deleted as a psychiatric disorder from the latest printing (July 1974) of the DSM II, even from its bracketed position beside "sexual orientation disorder." This position misinforms psychiatry, the medical profession, individual homosexuals, their families and governmental agencies which are responsible for mental health policies and third party payments...
Some statisticians, beginning with Kinsey, behavioral psychologists, and psychiatrists (in contrast to most psychoanalysts) supply incidence rates of certain phenomena as if behavior had no connection with motivation. Since neither conscious nor unconscious motivation is even acknowledged, these studies arrive at a disastrous conclusion that the resultant composite of sexual behavior is the norm of sexual behavior. The next step is to demand that the public, the law, medicine, psychiatry, religion, and other social institutions unquestioningly accept this proposition..."
"Heterosexuality "No Longer Normative"
Division 44 head Dr. Glassgold wrote a second essay in the newsletter which dealt with the use of psychoanalysis and other philosophies to "reformulate" psychoanalysis and reorder society's view of reality.
According to Glassgold, "Psychoanalysis has evolved and modern psychoanalysis no longer sees heterosexuality as normative and no longer views sexual and gender varieties as pathological; as a result, psychoanalysis and LGBT psychology do not have to be at odds, and can actually be allies..."
"... Heterosexism--though not a replacement for homophobia--is a broader term that does not imply the loathing the latter term suggests, and which can describe seemingly benign attitudes and behavior based on the belief that heterosexuality and a binary gender structure are the norm..."
"... The mailing "seeks to correct the misinformation that is being promoted by these homosexual advocacy groups that have an incredible influence on the public education system," said Dr. Joseph Nicolosi, president of NARTH and a proponent of reparative therapy for homosexuals who want to change...
The mailing goes out to the same school officials who were targeted in 1999 with a pamphlet entitled "Just the Facts," written by a coalition that included the American Psychological Association (APA).
The APA pamphlet encouraged schools not to inform students that therapy exists to diminish homosexuality and not to refer such students to counselors who will reflect their own family's deeply held values.
"NARTH was so incensed by the misinformation and untruths provided in the APA pamphlet that it immediately took on the task of raising the necessary funds required to compile, print and distribute" the mailing, Nicolosi said.
"Homosexual advocacy groups have been masterful in their ability to reframe what is essentially a health issue to a human rights issue, and when you talk human rights, everyone gets paranoid," he said..."
Thanks for the info. In it, I see reference to the usual whining by homosexual activists about "bullying" of "gay" youth in the schools.
And of course there is the usual claim that being homosexual is "inborn".
Now, what about this? If this "bullying" of kids perceived as homosexual is really going on among young children, it seems to me that maybe the thing that might REALLY be "inborn" here is a natural repugnance to the unnatural state of homosexuality.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.