Skip to comments.Peer-Reviewed Study Adds Validity to Claims of Sexual Orientation Change
Posted on 10/01/2011 7:16:02 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
Many people who work in the field of psychology argue against the idea that a person can change their sexual orientation. But a new study published in the October edition of the Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy reveals that some homosexuals who seek to change their sexual orientation may be able to do so with the help of religious mediation.
The study, conducted by psychologists Stanton L. Jones of Wheaton College and Mark A. Yarhouse of Regent University, examined changes in homosexuals who sought the help of Exodus International in trying to change their sexual orientation.
Researches tracked changes in the 98 participating subjects (72 men, 26 women) over the course of six or seven years through regular assessments.
The study found that, out of the 61 subjects who were successfully categorized for general outcome, 53 percent of them were categorized as having successful outcomes according to Exodus' standards.
Twenty-three percent reported a successful conversion to heterosexual orientation, while 30 percent reported stable behavioral chastity. Twenty percent of the subjects, however, gave up on changing and fully embraced the gay identity.
"Our study ... does not prove that everyone can change, Jones said in an interview with The Christian Post on Friday. It just proves that the reality is very, very complicated, and there seems to be some capacity for some people to shift their sexual orientation in a way that has personal meaning to them."
Jones noted that mainstream psychology often criticizes those that try to help gays become straight, branding those that do so as being unethical, unreasonable or cruel, and maintaining that sexual orientation cannot be changed.
"There certainly are abusive and crazy interventions, but not every attempt to change sexual orientation is necessarily so, Jones argued.
Many people criticize religious methods of sexual orientation change, saying that homosexuals are distressed and mentally harmed by such programs. The study also measured levels of distress in the subjects, however, and Yarhouse told The Christian Post that they found a different result than what would have commonly been expected.
On average, it does not appear to be harmful based on this data. In fact, if anything, there was more movement towards greater psychological health or less distress over time for people, he said. "I'm not saying that no one's ever been harmed. The question is whether it's intrinsic to the effort that it's causing harm, and that does not appear to be the case from this data."
Jones and Yarhouse previously published a book on their earlier studies, called Ex-Gays? (2007), but were criticized for publishing it in book form instead of in a peer-reviewed journal.
The implication was that it couldn't be published in a scientific, reputable journal, Yarhouse said about their earlier research. After conducting several more years of research and adjusting some of their methods, however, their work has finally gained some positive recognition.
"This isn't a study for the mainstream gay community, Yarhouse said. This is a study for primarily religious people who are distressed by their same-sex attractions. They want to know, if they were involved in a Christian ministry, is it possible over time for them to have significant and meaningful shifts along that continuum. And this data would suggest that for some that appears to be possible."
It would seem, queers are winning.
I am curious as to what part of the article your comment is in response to.
All I ever hear anymore is gay. Gay, gay, gay, gay, gay, gay, gay. Can’t even log on to FR anymore to get away from it. The queers are indeed winning.
Well in case you failed to notice, this article runs against the conventional wisdom and might provide hope to some folks. It even suggests, contrary to your argument, that in many cases the "queers" aren't winning.
May I suggest that you simply stick your fingers in your ears, close your eyes and hold your breath. Doesn't work for the average three-year-old, but perhaps you will be the exception.
I can say the same of stupid comments, like this one. Try READING the article. Sheesh.
I often have the impression that being gay is not so much a bonafide attraction to others of the same gender, but is rooted in fear of the opposite gender and other factors, such as self-esteem issues.
If all those issues could be sorted out, I think that a lot of “gayness” could be resolved.
There are more ex-homosexuals than homosexuals.
If what you say is true, then homosexuality is a predominantly temporary aberration. I'd need a lot proof before I believe that.
People who are “gay” have typically either given up on the opposite sex (for lack of a better phrase) or are all about having SEX!!
I have friends who are “gay” and I am trying to get them straight with the Lord! And everyone single one has told me that they fall into one of those two categories! I work with many at church and all of those fall into one of these categories!
SAD!! We have so many people that are so weak willed! And the idiots out there who support and encourage this mental illness!!
Really? It takes will power to resist having homosexual relations with men? If that is the case, said person is a homosexual. It takes me exactly 0 units of will power to resist the urge to have sex with men, mainly because I have 0 urge to have sex with men. Am I the only one who thinks there is something strange about people who get amped up about this? I am against homosexual marriage but I am not about to try to join some crusade to "fix" them.
If I’ve read this correctly it says that all the subjects are people involved in the ministry. Further only 53% reported a convesion. If that reading is correct, and im willing to be corrected, I have doubts about the general applicability of this finding due to the select nature of the sample
Of the gay men I’ve known only 3 managed to become straight. In their cases they were only gay a few years, the longest was around 13, and all 3 by religious mediation. I would suggest that like most lifestyles the change becomes more difficult was time passes.
RE: There are more ex-homosexuals than homosexuals.
This is interesting. Can you cite for us a reliable source for this ?
Unless you want to spend a lot of money on journal subscriptions, you have to start researching through sites like this.
So, if someone thinks they are Napoleon Bonaparte, you are against home recruiting for Waterloo II, but you don’t want to fix his mental problem?
To each his own, but I try to help those in need of help!
Anything could be a temporary aberration. Anything. I supposed if anyone set their mind to it, they could change a lot of things.
it wouldn’t always lead to a good result however
I agree with you sir.
Thanks. Glad to hear there’s such wonderful hope.
At my church, each Sunday, at the beginning of the service, the pastors welcome everyone. They state they are available and will support folks who are striving to be conformed into the image of Christ and to live a life in obedience to Scripture and that we cherish and accept everyone as they walk that path.
I enjoyed reading the article and am so glad to hear of many who yearn to be free.