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September 28, 2006

Comments

J.R. Stoodley

Remember also, temptation does not equal sin.

Marty Helgesen

There is an orthodox organization for homosexual Catholics called Courage. Google gave me this URL
http://couragerc.net/

J.R.,

True indeed, but it's also wise to mention along with that that assent to temptation is a sin.

It's not a sin to be tempted to engage in homosexuality, but thinking about it is.

The SSA is the most godless branch of the U.S. Government. I am definitely not looking forward to retirement!

ajesquire

RULE 20 (AND RULE 1) VIOLATION.

Mary Kay

Jimmy, your last paragraph nails my thinking on teen SSA.

In nearly any developmental context, adolescence is described as a time of flux. Teens are notoriously one direction one day, another direction another time. Yet when a teen says "I'm gay/SSA/homosexual," suddenly it's engraved in stone?

Even when a teen knows a certain direction, there's always a "wait and see if you still feel this way in a year or two." Except for homosexuality.

Whatever happened to the idea of late bloomers?

Tim J.

Exactly, Mary Kay.

At the age of 19 I THOUGHT I wanted to be a biker, and looked and acted the part.

Thanks God there was no officially sanctioned Biker Support Group in my high school to encourage kids like me to follow their dreams of becoming a Hell's Angel.

Anon

Mary Kay,

I agree with you completely. When talking with teens who have confided this to me (I do some work in Youth Ministry), part of my advice to them, besides explaining the Church's teaching on chastity, has always been to wait a few years, because these feelings may change.

However, a note to parents/family/friends of a teen/young adult who feels he/she may be SSA is not to automatically assume it's just a phase. Don't automatically brush it off as simple teenage confusion that they'll grow out of, because for some of us, that doesn't happen. And to simply dismiss it right off the bat, you could be 1) setting yourself up for a harder time if your teen does not get over it; and 2) not showing the help or support this teen is coming to you for and needs. Nobody, especially a teenager, likes to feel like nobody is listening to them or they're not being taken seriously.

Mary Kay

Anon, thanks for the additional caveat. The importance of taking seriously what is shared, however transitory, is indeed important.

My reaction is largely to various occasions in local high schools, teens expected to deal with adults' confusion and agendas.

And also to echo what Tim J said.

Courage Member

I don't think this is a rule 20 violation because I'm only adding more information and not contradicting Jimmy.

www.couragerc.net is officially endorsed by the Catholic Church and provides tremendous help in the subject. Also there are online discussion boards there, even one for teens, that provide support and where to go for more information. Also the group Encourage is there as well. Encourage is specifically for family and friends of those who experience same-sex-attraction. The original poster may benefit from that as well.

NARTH is an excellect place and I'm glad that Jimmy pointed him there, but I'm concerned that he didn't mention Courage. The best place to get support is from people who are like minded and are going through or have gone through the same thing.

I've been a member of Courage for over 3 years and it has saved my life. Literally.

I hope this isn't a rule violation and if it is I'm very sorry.

Peace

Christine

Courage is an excellent resource also. http://www.couragerc.net.

Narth has more of an emphasis on changing the person's orientation through therapy.

Courage makes no such claim or attempt...they simply encourage and support a chaste, celibate life.

Marco

This could well be a passing thing for the younger brother but in my experience it might be something he’ll deal with all his life.

The older brother can help by not being judgmental, or immediately thinking this is something that needs a cure -hey, the kid is probably having a bad enough time as it is. Might I suggest being supportive and let the younger brother also look at ways that might lead to accepting those feeling should his true orientation be homosexual. There are many of us out here who accept our homosexuality – that’s how God made me; it’s like the blood in my veins, the air in my lungs. I am no less a child of God just because I’m gay.

Please don’t present SSA only in a negative light, as something that has to be reversed, denied, or changed. If this is his true orientation and he isn’t also given positive ways to see himself and means to deal honesty and confidently with his sexuality, then this can lead to much useless suffering, and heartache.

Has anyone read the recent article by two Catholic theologians in Theological Studies, 67 (2006), 625-52: "Catholic Sexual Ethics: Complementarity and the Truly Human," by Todd A. Salzman, who is Chair of the Department of Theology at Creighton University, and Michael G. Lawler, Director of the Center for Marriage and Family Life at Creighton
(and an emeritus professor in the theology department there). Salzman and
Lawler are co-authors of the forthcoming volume, Committed Love: A Catholic
Sexual Morality.

I don’t subscribed to TS and have tried to find a copy of it but to no avail – does anyone have access to this?

chris K

Here's a good source:

http://www.culture-of-life.org/?Control=ArticleMaster&aid=1476&c=2&p=3

and good therapists (Fitzgibbons, Sutton):

http://www.leaderu.com/orgs/narth/peer.html

http://www.narth.com/docs/ssad.html

http://www.cathmed.org/publications/openletter.htm

http://www.narth.com/docs/coll-sutton.html

Marco

Just to let you all know I (Marco) posted the comment "This could well be a passing thing..." which has been noted as posted by christine - whoever she is - I did not post the "here's a good source" list.

FYI

Marco, the by-lines appear at the bottom of each post, which is what caused the confusion. The index lines between the posts and their posters don't help much either.

BTW, giving positive ways to see oneself seems like good, common-sense advice in general.

Marco, I'm a Creighton grad, and when I went to school there (late '90s) there was, shall we say, not much "Catholic" perspective given to SSA issues. Certain RA's in the dorms, for example, posted the pink triangles on their doors, and there was a gay/lesbian club on campus and so on. All with "good intention" of course, but not Catholic in theology. Hopefully things have changed.

Also, the people I've known who had very strong SSA were also suicidal. If it's a close family member you're dealing with who has confided in you, don't forget to make your unconditional love obvious. SSA is indeed a heavy cross for some.

J.R. Stoodley

ajesquire,

What exactly is the Rule 20 and Rule 1 violation? I see no such thing. Unless of course it has already been deleted.

bill912

ajesquire committed the violation, and it's been deleted, JRS; you didn't miss anything.

Mary Kay

J.R., scroll down on the left side of the screen. Under Permaposts is a link to "Da Rulz."

Gene Branaman

May I ask that we all include the two young men who are the subjects of Jimmy's post & all folks who might have a SSA in our prayers, please? I think that's a very good idea!

StubbleSpark

I have heard of a parent who did not want to teach her SSA son Catholic theology because she was afraid it would come off as too critical and cause him to commit suicide.

But my own personal observation is that those who live the lifestyle are far more self-destructive engaging in soulless one-night stands with complete strangers and courting all manner of STDs, using drugs, and expressing suicidal tendencies.

Does anyone have some statistics regarding the suicide rate among Courage members and those who engage in an active homosexual lifestyle?

As Courage reminds, "Courage members are under no obligation to try to develop heterosexual attractions, because there is no guarantee that a person will always succeed in such an endeavour." Indeed, it can sometimes have the opposite effect.

Carl

But my own personal observation is that those who live the lifestyle are far more self-destructive engaging in soulless one-night stands with complete strangers and courting all manner of STDs, using drugs, and expressing suicidal tendencies.

Unfortunatel, that sounds like many people, regardless of sexual orientation.

Tim J.

Marco -

"There are many of us out here who accept our homosexuality – that’s how God made me; it’s like the blood in my veins, the air in my lungs. I am no less a child of God just because I’m gay."

Ummm... so if "God made me" sexually attracted to children???

"Please don’t present SSA only in a negative light..."

You mean, like saying that it is intrinsically disordered, as the Church teaches?

"If this is his true orientation and he isn’t also given positive ways to see himself and means to deal honesty and confidently with his sexuality..."

The way to deal with his sexuality is to live a chaste life. For a single person, that means total abstinence. For a married person, total fidelity. Really married, I mean, to someone of the opposite sex.

John E

Another resource which may be helpful:
http://www.catholictherapists.com/

Stephen

"I want to help him by talking to a priest about it " from the original post

I would NOT talk to most priests about it as the American priesthood (at least, it may be international but what I am familiar with) is crawling with homosexuals. My Jesuit High School was unbelievable. This is not meant to be offensive, mean spirited or scandolous. SSA would not only be considered normal but good and encouraged at my ostensibly Catholic High School. The Catholic Jesuit College that I visited friends and my sister went to related to my High School went even farther that those who taught, believed, or at least open their mouths about Traditional Catholic (or Protestant Christian, Eastern Orthodox, Jewish, Islamic, or even Tibetan Buddhist) views on homosexuality were violating hate codes and were evil medeival neandrathals that should be punished and even ostracized from college life.

In Baltimore, gay bars had a priest night because so many Catholic clergy frequented the gay bars.

So, I stand by my, albeit painful, statement that don't talk to a priest about SSA unless you really know the priest well.

On reparative therapy, the American Psychiatric Association's official statement says: "The validity, efficacy and ethics of clinical attempts to change an individual's sexual orientation have been challenged (3,4,5,6). To date, there are no scientifically rigorous outcome studies to determine either the actual efficacy or harm of "reparative" treatments. There is sparse scientific data about selection criteria, risks versus benefits of the treatment, and long-term outcomes of "reparative" therapies. The literature consists of anecdotal reports of individuals who have claimed to change, people who claim that attempts to change were harmful to them, and others who claimed to have changed and then later recanted those claims (7,8,9)."

And, "Psychotherapeutic modalities to convert or "repair" homosexuality are based on developmental theories whose scientific validity is questionable. Furthermore, anecdotal reports of "cures" are counterbalanced by anecdotal claims of psychological harm. In the last four decades, "reparative" therapists have not produced any rigorous scientific research to substantiate their claims of cure. Until there is such research available, APA recommends that ethical practitioners refrain from attempts to change individuals' sexual orientation, keeping in mind the medical dictum to first, do no harm."
http://www.psych.org/psych_pract/copptherapyaddendum83100.cfm

Jared Weber

Anon: If there is insufficient research in this area, perhaps they should study those anecdotal cases in greater detail. In the end, all statistical data can be broken down into individual, anedotal cases.

Sometimes, doing nothing, or worse, reinforcing destructive behavior, is the very opposite of the medical dictum.

A Simple Sinner

This is an issue that cuts close to home. It is a temptation that I spent a few years indulging in. I like to be open about it in certain adult environments like this one because I am so very glad I have had the Grace to understand how Jesus Christ loved **ME** in particular so very much that He offers me His Church to help me lead my day to day life.

I am nothing special except that He made me and anything He made must be special. But I don't mind to share some of my story if it is the case that other people come to understand the Church was RIGHT when it wrote the old Baltimore Catechism: Who made you? God made me. Why did God make you? To know Him, love Him, and serve Him in this live and be happy with Him for all eternity in the next." That was spot on. 110%. Totaly true.

I also understand that while the Catholic Church, being the Bride of Christ, is totally in love with His children - all of us, she must tell the truth.

Leading a "gay life" in a supportive setting like the city I live in, the neighborhood I lived in, the work environment I was in should have made me very happy. Really, everyone was acccepting of my lifestyle, but I was not happy.

The events that lead back to my return to the Cathololic Church are a long story. I would be happy to share them in another forum. But I can tell everyone that the thing that has helped me the most to lead a Catholic life and understand my place as a celibate single man has been the aid of a good confessor with whom I can be open and honest. Their is simply NO substitute for a good spiritual father to remeber you daily at the altar and pray for you as his son.

In every cross there can be some joy. I can't say I am happy to have the past I have, or that I enjoy dealing with my temptations. I do not. BUT, like a man who has hungered and thirsted for days, I am sometimes more appreciative then I could ever imagine for the spiritual food and water Jesus gives me in the Catholic Church.

I totally agree with Jimmy. He is very right about the use of therapy in dealing with these issues. A good therapist can help us to understand why it is those of us with such temptation struggle the ways we do and help us to move on.

My advice to this man's brother (for what he himself can do) is that this man let his brother know how very much he loves him. Then pray together for the strength and grace to deal with their temptations.

I also would say that what I would tell ANY Catholic who stuggles with ANY temptation (i.e. all of us) find a good spiritual father to really help him lead a holy life. Mine is like a second father to me - helping me gorw, admonishing and encouraging me as I need it.

If there is insufficient research in this area, perhaps they should study those anecdotal cases in greater detail.

Unfortunately, studying anecdotal reports does not and cannot eliminate the significant methodological ambiguities in the research.

The research studies rely on clients' self-reported outcomes or on therapists' post-treatment evaluations. As a result, conversion therapy studies are biased in favor of "cures" because clients of conversion therapy are likely to believe that homosexuality is an undesirable trait to admit and may feel pressure to tell their therapist that the treatment has been successful. Similarly, conversion therapists have an interest in finding that their treatments are successful. The studies lack safeguards against bias and lack control groups. The patients are not evaluated by independent third parties unaware of which patients received the "reparative therapy."

The true extent to which people have actually changed their behavior has not been systematically assessed. Rigorous objective assessments (e.g., behavioral indicators over an extended period of time) have been lacking. In many published reports of "successful" conversion therapies, the participants' initial sexual orientation was never adequately assessed. Many bisexuals have been mislabeled as homosexuals with the consequence that the "successes" reported for the conversions actually have occurred among bisexuals -- not homosesexuals -- who were highly motivated to adopt a heterosexual behavior pattern.

And even if we accept the studies' claim that change has occurred, they do not provide any evidence that such change resulted from a particular therapy. Individuals who changed might well have done so anyway, even without therapy. In effect, there's no valid evidence that any treatment program is more effective than prayer or chance or watching TV. When follow-up was performed, for example, one study done on a religious conversion therapy program found more than 90% continued to have homosexual fantasies and behavior after treatment.

And it should be noted that almost all published research on conversion therapy deals with males, not females.

In the end, all statistical data can be broken down into individual, anedotal cases.

When you do that, you can't see the forest for the trees.

Mary Kay

A Simple Sinner, you show much wisdom in your post.

Anon, that APA position statement says out right that it joins those who "either oppose or are critical of 'reparative' therapies" because they disagree with the "a priori assumption that a patient should change his/her sexual orientation."

The APA's position is not based on rigorous science either. It's a political decision based on "social acceptance."

They've joined with the same organizations that call abortion "health care."

Bottom line, the APA's position statement is not the last word on the topic of homosexuality.

Leading a "gay life" in a supportive setting like the city I live in, the neighborhood I lived in, the work environment I was in should have made me very happy. Really, everyone was acccepting of my lifestyle, but I was not happy.

Dissatisfaction in life is not exclusive to any particular sexual orientation, regardless of where one lives or works, even if others in one's local enclave are accepting of whatever. It was a false assumption to believe it could make you happy.

Mary Kay

Anon, the health field likes to discredit what they don't agree with by saying that "it's only anecdotal."

They said the same about post-abortion syndrome.

The scientific study battles are still ongoing. None of them are the definitive answer.

With that, I'll have to continue this during the day.

The APA's position is not based on rigorous science either

Their own words say: "There is no published scientific evidence supporting the efficacy of 'reparative therapy' as a treatment to change one's sexual orientation... There is no evidence that any treatment can change a homosexual person's deep seated sexual feelings for others of the same sex."

A Simple Sinner

There is a rule 20 violation.

I am not going to justify or explain my comments in light of the rules Jimmy has set forth. If anyone who has the guts to post his or her identity publicly has the integrity to e-mail me privately, I would be happy do discuss the evidence for my position.

bill912

I had a hunch this post was going to bring out a lot of Rule 20 violations. Jimmy'll have something to do this morning.

bill912

A Simple Sinner: anonymity and guts rarely go together, so don't hold your breath.

P.S.: You have my respect, because you do have guts.

Tim J.

The APA is also where the US Bishops got the idea that child molesters and homosexual predators could be reformed.

I'm not saying it's impossible, but as a matter of POLICY it was a totally wacked-out idea.

Jared Weber

Anon: Do not forget that the APA treated SSA as a disorder until 1973 (a year that lives in infamy for a number of reasons). Was there any ground-breaking research conclusion at that time? Nope. The culture had changed but not the science.

Also, more recently, Pres. Koocher of the APA has voiced support for therapy to limit SSA and strengthen heterosexual potential. http://narth.com/docs/koocher.html

I'm tired of anonymous posting. My advice to you would be to at least post under a psuedonym. Not that there's any scientific data to back me on it; just the "tree" of my annoyance.

ajesquire

The founder of NARTH, Nicolosi, recommends "repairing" a potentially gay young boy by having the father play "rough-and-tumble" games, pounding a wooden peg into a hole (is there something subliminal there?!?) and TAKING A SHOWER WITH DAD.

He feels it's important to teach very young boys to "own their p*nises". "if he does not suceed in 'owning' his own [ . . . ], he will grow into an adult who will find continuing fascination in the [ . . . es] of other men."

Riiiight.

Please stick with Courage, and avoid this destructive junk science.

Mike

The APA policy statements, like those of many other medical organizations, may well be influenced by the values and political tendencies of those making the statements. However, even if that is the case here, that does not make reparative therapy a valid form of treatment in and of itself.

I am not a psychiatrist, but a search of Medline yields almost no controlled evaluations of its efficacy. Some one who experiencing distress due to SSA may very well benefit from therapy, but to look at SSA as something that needs to be expunged, and have that be the focus on the therapy may be ultimately damaging to the person in question.

Matt McDonald

to look at SSA as something that needs to be expunged, and have that be the focus on the therapy may be ultimately damaging to the person in question.

We could say the same thing about attempts to rid someone of many other disorders. Drug addictions in particular.

It is a disorder. If it can be expunged it should be for the spiritual and material health of the patient. If it can't be expunged IT MUST be suppressed for the spiritual and material health of the patient.

Mary Kay

Mike and Matt, your statements demonstrate some misconceptions about therapy. Not uncommon, but also not accurate.

Both of you seem to have the notion of forcefully imposing something unwanted on a person. Matt with "IT MUST be suppressed" and Mike's blanket statement about being "ultimately damaging."

Therapy is voluntary. The one exception is mandated clients, for whom one goal is to not harm others (if I can make a sweeping generalization).

So... Matt, if by "suppressed," you mean "not act on," that is a therapeutic goal. You should also be awared that the word suppression has a very specific meaning in mental health, one that is different than "not act on."

Mike, since you're not a psychiatrist, you may want to reconsider making broad statements about whether a specific therapy is "a valid form of treatment in and of itself."

Fairly recently you could have made the same statement about not finding controlled evaluations of the efficacy about EMDR, a treatment that now is mentioned in Medline.

Not only could you say that about any new therapy, the number of "controlled evaluations of efficacy" for many mental health conditions are sparse. The dust has settled about "best treatment" for very few conditions.

Mike

Hi Mary Kay-

I may not be a psychiatrist, but I play one on TV (kidding!). However, I do know a few things about the medical literature and how to evaluate it. I'm not sure I was clear in my earlier post- my point was that although the APA's statements on homosexuality may be flawed, that does not mean that reparative therapy is right by default. Any form of medical treatment must be judged as to its safety and efficacy on its own merits.

I don't think I was making a broad generalization about therapy in general, just an observation that there is not a great deal of evidence supporting reparative therapy in particular. I would be equally as hesitiant about recommending a new therapy in my own field that was not well supported by available evidence. If such evidence emerges, and the consensus among objective professionals is that reparative therapy is safe and potentially beneficial, I would certainly reverse my previous statements :-)

Both of you seem to have the notion of forcefully imposing something unwanted on a person. Matt with "IT MUST be suppressed" and Mike's blanket statement about being "ultimately damaging."

Any ethical therapist would not seek to force a diagnosis onto someone, it's true. It may well be the case, in some individuals, that reparative therapy may not necessarily be damaging. I do however have a problem with regarding SSA as a mental illness de facto, something that is harmful in and of itself and must be treated. In some individuals, SSA may be something transient or superficial, but in others it seems to be an integral part of who that person is. I submit that subjecting the latter individual to therapy that seeks to end their homosexuality, rather than encouraging them to accept who they are and live a chaste life, could be potentially harmful.

Mary Kay

Mike,

I may not be a psychiatrist, but I play one on TV (kidding!) ... Hmmm, I wondered who that was in the background on Grey's Anatomy. (teasing back - I've never seen it)

Okay, now I get that you're sayinig that reparative therapy is right by default. All I was saying was that it shouldn't be automatically ruled out.

Which brings us to the new therapy point. It's a topic almost too large to tackle in a combox and I'm reluctant to delve too deeply. I'll just leave it that I would not rule it out as an option.

You are certainly not alone with your difficulty of SSA as a mental illness de facto, but then, if you're familiar with the DSM, that's not news.

(DRUM ROLL) Now to your last paragraph and why I commented about the forceful imposition. WHO is "subjecting an individual to therapy to end their homosexuality?" If you're suggesting a therapist would, under what circumstances? That's not a rhetorical question, I'm curious.

btw, it's the treatment that's not forced, not the diagnosis.

Mike

Hi Mary Kay-

I was thinking along the following lines:

A person confides in their family that they feel atraction towards the same sex. Said family members are very distressed, and insist that he/she seek reparative therapy to "cure" them of their homosexuality. That person, out of love for their family, seeks said therapy.

Now, for that person, their homosexual attractions may be transient, or they may represent something more fundamental about their sexuality. A therapist who is convinced that homosexuality is a mental illness may try to coerce that person into an unhealthy denial of their sexuality, perhaps to the point of that person trying to undertake a heterosexual relationship that they are not suited to. I'm not saying that all therapists would do this, I hope that there are those who recognize that homosexual attractions are not the same for everybody. So, in the preceeding case, no one put a gun to that person's head and "forced" then into reparative therapy, but that person, out of shame of their sexual orientation and the desire to please their family, tries to push themselves into an unhealthy situation. I'm not saying everyone seeking therapy for their homosexual attractions is in this situation, but it is what I fear could be a possibility.

Fr Martin Fox

I want to echo the advice someone gave above, that the older brother here can help by being a loving, close brother. The younger man has so few places to turn, how fortunate he is to have his older brother who will look out for him, be a companion and friend, and a role model. Being a teen, dealing with all the issues of growing up, expectations, romance! and measuring up, are all frightening enough; having to deal with same-sex attractions can only make it more frightening.

One problem is that these young men and women don't know where to turn, to whom to confide. Sadly, the "liberation" folks are ready.

So this older brother can really help just by being a brother.

Mike

Hi Matt-

Be very careful about conflating homosexuality and other disorders such as addiction. Even if one believes that homosexuality is a mental disorder (which I do not), not all mental illnesses have the same etiology or treatment.

My gay therapy session

To find out how "reparative therapy" works, I pretended to be gay. My licensed Christian therapist explained to me why homosexuality is a mental disorder, what the "Wizard of Oz principle" is, and why kids who can't "hit the ball or fire the gun" are more likely to be gay.

http://dir.salon.com/story/news/feature/2005/07/19/gaytherapy/index.html

Mary Kay

Mike, therapy is very much geared to what the client is asking for.

The clear cut situations are
1) if the family members are the ones upset, but not the IP, then the focus is on the family's distress. If they were Catholic, a referral to an Encourage group would be appropriate.

2)if the IP says he is greatly distressed by SSA and wants heterosexual relationships, then a referral to reparative therapy would be appropriate (doing the same check on credentials, experience and treatment method as any new provider).

Your hypothetical IP feels shame about his SSA and also feels badly about "disappointing" his family. A hypothetical diagnosis for this hypothetical person would be "Sexual Disorder Not Otherwise Specified" to give that person a safe place to talk his SSA, to explore if it is situational or something deeper.

That's the most likely scenario. It's just as likely to have a clinician with an agenda to push a client into a "homosexual lifestyle" as it is to have a clinician push him to "deny his sexual orientation."

Basically your last sentence is expressing a fear that a clinician let their agenda or bias interfere with patient care. But that's not limited to mental health. From my own medical history, I've run into providers who were blinded by their own bias, to the extent of disregard documentation. (I eventually got a second opinion and some answers.)

Matt McDonald

Mary Kay,

your position flies in the face of Catholic teaching that homosexuality is an "objective disorder" CCC. Given that, I don't see how it would not be defined as a psychological disorder, the CMA seems to take this position. Now perhaps not all psychological disorders are curable, nor is it necessarily appropriate to attempt to reverse it. It is necessary for the SALVATION of the victim to help them to see the sinful nature of homosexual behaviour, and to help them overcome their problem by either curing it if that is possible and prudent the situation, or suppressing it.

I really don't care if the words I use are not scientifically accurate according to the psychologists. I'm speaking as a layman, to laymen, if anyone has trouble understanding what I mean they can ask.

If anyone thinks that I'm suggesting the use of force, that's patently ridiculous. We do not coerce obedience by physical force in the Catholic Church.

Matt McDonald

Forgot the citation:


2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity,140 tradition has always declared that "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered."141 They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which isobjectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.

Mary Kay

Matt, please specify where your claim that in my post, "your position flies in the face of Catholic teaching."

In your haste to prove others wrong, you not only blur lines, but you miss what the other person is saying.

I really don't care if the words I use are not scientifically accurate according to the psychologists.

Which makes it a darned good thing that you're not a health professional.

I'm speaking as a layman, to laymen
Then why are you making pronouncements about what MUST be done in regard to treatment of patients?

Mike gave you very good advice about not conflating homosexuality and addictions.

If it can't be expunged IT MUST be suppressed for the spiritual and material health of the patient.

"IT MUST be suppressed" does indeed come across as forceful.


Matt McDonald

Matt, please specify where your claim that in my post, "your position flies in the face of Catholic teaching."

If you agree with Church teaching on this matter than say - "I agree that homosexual inclinations are objectively disordered and agree with the Church's teaching regarding homosexuality as laid out in CCC 2357-2359."

Simple enough?

I'm speaking as a layman, to laymen
Then why are you making pronouncements about what MUST be done in regard to treatment of patients?

I'm concerned for the salvation of the individual's soul. I only said that if the person can't be healed, they the tendency mus be suppressed. If medical treatment is available to assist with that, great, if not, prayer and good spiritual guidance. Either way it must be suppressed.


If it can't be expunged IT MUST be suppressed for the spiritual and material health of the patient.

"IT MUST be suppressed" does indeed come across as forceful.

It is forcefully stated. Everyone knows the difference between advocating force and stating a position forcefully.

Michael

Mary Kay,

I think you misinterpret the APA statement. That they disagree with reparative therapy because they disagree with the a priori assumption that some should change their sexual orientation, neither that a) a person can change thier orientation nor b) a person should engage in a homosexual lifestyle. That many therapists believe that there is nothing intrinsically wrong with living a homosexual lifestyle is neither here nor there. The a priori assumption that NARTH operates under is that sexual orientation can and should, emphasis on the should, be changed. Not dealt with. Changed. And that is not an appropriate a priori assumption. Considering that NARTH bases most of its therapy on shame, there is a very good reason that the APA rejects it. And it is disheartening to see someone like Jimmy constantly recommending them. Nicolosi's opinion is based on theories that are very out dated, very unsupported by modern research, and very, very Freudian.

Mary Kay

Matt, you did not answer my question as to where in my post you claim that my "position flies in the face of Catholic teaching." You made an allegation. Now you have to back it up.

I'm glad that you're concerned about an individual's soul.

At this point, I simply want to know why you have such a problem with what I said.

Mary Kay

Michael,

I based my comment on the APA's statement

"the APA joined many other professional organizations that either oppose or are critical of "reparative" therapies"

http://www.psych.org/psych_pract/copptherapyaddendum83100.cfm

They joined other organizations that have been actively pro-homosexual and pro-abortion while dismissing any and all that differed from their views.

For the above reasons, because of how highly charged the topic is, for several other reasons, I stand by my statement that the APA is not the last word on homosexuality.

It MUST be suppressed.

Same sex attraction does not have to suppressed, for it is neither a sin nor a personal choice. Rather, in the eyes of the Church, persons with SSA should not engage in sinful homosexual acts, to the extent that such a person may be culpable.

I based my comment on the APA's statement
"the APA joined many other professional organizations that either oppose or are critical of "reparative" therapies"

Because there is no valid scientific evidence that such therapies are effective and because there is no valid scientific evidence of any mental disorder to be corrected.

They joined other organizations that have been actively pro-homosexual and pro-abortion while dismissing any and all that differed from their views.

Views must be scientifically validated or they will be dismissed as unscientific.

J.R. Stoodley

Same sex attraction does not have to suppressed

Same sex attraction is a temptation. Temptations should be suppressed.

Because there is no valid scientific evidence that such therapies are effective and because there is no valid scientific evidence of any mental disorder to be corrected.

I don't know about the effectiveness of any given therapy, but if it has been established that someone is attracted to a people of the same sex then it has been established that they have a mental (or emotional?) disorder. You don't need science to know that SSA is disordered.

Temptations should be suppressed.

No. Jesus resisted temptations by submitting himself to God, but he did not suppress his temptations. He met temptations head on and said let them come. They came and they fled, but Jesus did not suppress them. He wore the armor of God. "Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes." Taking a stand against temptations is not to suppress them, not even to actively battle against them, but to meet them head on in the armor of God wherein you are untouchable by temptation.

if it has been established that someone is attracted to a people of the same sex then it has been established that they have a mental (or emotional?) disorder.

The Church calls homosexual tendencies "objectively disordered," a philosophical term. It is not the same as what people call a mental disorder, nor does the Church teach it as such.

Further, the Church does not teach that same sex attraction per se is the same as homosexuality. The Church in its teaching says "homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex." As such, the teaching excludes many people who experience same sex attraction, and indeed many who engage in sex acts, from its definition of homosexuality.

Jared Weber

Mr. Anonymous Poster (so tired of these people who lack the courage to even post under a psuedonym):

sup‧press–verb (used with object) 1. to put an end to the activities of (a person, body of persons, etc.): to suppress the Communist party.
2. to do away with by or as by authority; abolish; stop (a practice, custom, etc.).
3. to withhold from disclosure or publication (truth, evidence, a book, names, etc.).
4. to stop or arrest (a flow, hemorrhage, cough, etc.).
5. to vanquish or subdue (a revolt, rebellion, etc.); quell; crush.

Sounds exactly like what Christ did. In addition, He taught us to flee temptation, to pray (in the Our Father) for deliverance from it. St. Paul writes:

Now flee from youthful lusts, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. (2 Tim. 2:22)

Suppression is, indeed, exactly what is called for.

so tired of these people who lack the courage to even post under a psuedonym

Courage is for prideful cowards. I have no need for courage nor a need for a pseudonym. As for you being tired, it's your own game that tires you. You imagine a need for a pseudonym and then get worked up when your need is not fulfilled. You lose at your own game. Why play that game. Do you not have the courage to stop?

to put an end to... to do away with... to stop or arrest... to vanquish or subdue... Sounds exactly like what Christ did.

Jesus did not put an end to, do away with, stop or arrest, or subdue his temptations. Those are all active roles. Rather, Jesus resisted temptation by standing firm in the armor of God and temptation fled. In effect, Jesus did nothing with temptation itself but rather, Jesus submitted to God for protection, and stood there in faith while the temptation came and went harmlessly. Jesus was delivered from the harm of temptation by abiding in God. Jesus didn't stop it. "When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time." (Luke 4:13)

When Daniel was sealed in the den with the lions, did Daniel subdue the lion? No! God sent an angel to shut the mouths of the lions. It is the same with every sinful temptation. "Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith" (1 Peter 5:8-9). To resist temptation means to stand firm in the shielding armor of God, not to vanquish or subdue temptation, but to be untouched by it, to be delivered from the harm of temptation. "The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack" (2 Tim 4:18). "The one who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him." (1 John 5:18)

God "will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it." (1 Cor. 10:13) Note, God provides you a way out, an escape so you can stand up under it, so you can stand firm in the face of temptation. You're not conquering it. You're not stopping temptation. You're escaping from the harm of temptation under the armor of God while enduring it.

He taught us to flee temptation... Now flee from youthful lusts

"To flee" does not match your posted definition of suppress. When you flee from a fire, you do not suppress, put an end to, do away with, stop or arrest, vanquish or subdue the fire. Try again.

Yes, flee from lusts, by running for cover in God. You must flee the fire because you're unable to suppress it! If you abide in God, God will see to it that the fire does not harm you, and you will not have to flee. Then you can endure the fire, the temptation, without thinking you need to suppress it.

bill912

I think the above anonymous coward's Rule 20 violations should be deleted.

Mary Kay

Jared, that's why I've stopped responding (or even reading) anonymous posts.

Michael

Mary Kay,

Again you are misinterpretting. It doesn't matter what kind of bedfellows the APA has politically with regards to homosexuals. The point is that they reject the notion that the only proper therapy for a person with SSA is an attempt to convert them into heterosexuals. The APA finds this a priori assumption wrong. They do not believe that SSA cannot be managed without being outright gay, nor do they believe that sexuality cannot change, nor do they believe that the best treatment for a patient is never an attempt to live as a heterosexual. Again, what they reject is the a priori assumption that the only treatment for a patient with SSA is reparative therapy.

If you go to NARTH, they will not recognize cases in which an attempt to live a life as a heterosexual would be far more psychologically damaging than an attempt to live a life as a chaste homosexual (or SSA person, if you prefer). I am truly sorry if you cannot see the nuanced but extremely important distinction between the two.

Matt McDonald

Mary Kay,

you did not answer my question as to where in my post you claim that my "position flies in the face of Catholic teaching." You made an allegation. Now you have to back it up.

I'm glad that you're concerned about an individual's soul.

At this point, I simply want to know why you have such a problem with what I said.

Perhaps I misread a between the lines inference, if I'm wrong, I apologize. Would you like to correct me? Just say: "Matt, you are wrong. I believe that homosexual inclinations are objectively disordered and agree with the Church's teaching regarding homosexuality as laid out in CCC 2357-2359."

I will refrain from responding to anonymous cowards ridiculous ideas about not extinguishing temptation where it is possible, I will point out that Ghandi slept with naked teenage girls, supposedly to test his will... that sounds dangerously close to what he is proposing.

Mary Kay

Michael,

What part of
"the American Psychiatric Association opposes any psychiatric treatment, such as "reparative" or conversion therapy, which is based upon the assumption that homosexuality per se is a mental disorder or based upon the a priori assumption that a patient should change his/her sexual homosexual orientation "
is misinterpreted?

However, you've apparently added more than what they said. You make it sound as if they oppose reparation therapy as the "only" therapy, as if one of several options. In fact, the APA has categorically opposed it as an option. It was only in August 2006 that the APA president said that re-orientation therapy was an option.

Nor is there any credible scientific evidence is support the APA's statement that the a priori assumption is wrong.

However, there was much political pressure. Prior to removal as a diagnostic category, homosexual activists disrupted an APA meeting, shouting down participants.

In addition, it is indeed relevant to consider APA's political bedfellows. It is not coincidence that both abortion and homosexuality advocates dismiss as anecdotal any events that do not fit their view.

Again, there are no credible studies to support much of what is bandied about as "fact."

Your last paragraph about NARTH is a straw man argument.

Dan R.

To ajesquire:

Dr. Nicolosi's attempts to help a young boy get a grasp of his masculinity through those activities with his father actually make a great deal of sense if seen through the lens of NARTH'S understanding behind the root cause of homosexuality. Male SSA is principally a deep-seated craving and affirmation of one's manhood that never occured in the critical adolescent years. This affirmation is usually (though not always) found through a father, or father-like figure in a young man's life. If a boy does not get the chance to affirm his masculinity, then he spends his teen years questioning it, and if not properly directed, his adult years trying to "absorb" it through multiple partners, encounters, etc. So while banging on pegs or wrestling, or even taking a shower with Dad may seem off-putting at first, those activities need to be seen as attempts to give the child a chance to identity - through the proper male figure - with what being a male means.

Mary Kay

Matt, what you missed was that both instances were health related rather than Catechism related.

The first was when you crossed the line to pronounce what was "good for a patient's health."

The second was specifically and solely about therapy. (btw, you still haven't told me what you thought "flies in the face of Catholic teaching)

A health professional sees people of various religious persuasions. If the patient is Catholic, then their reason for being seen can be discussed in terms of Catholic teaching. If the patient is not Catholic, then the health provider can't quote the Catechism to the patient.

Since both instances had a medical focus rather than a Catechism focus, I'm not going to take your litmus test.

Michael

Mary Kay,

I will obviously not change your mind. That you repeat the erroneous claim about homosexual advocates shouting down participants at the 1973 APA meeting shows that you understand very little about how and why homosexuality was removed as a mental disorder, including the scores of clinical data to support it's removal. Yes there was a political aspect, but the opposition was given plenty of opportunity to rebut the current evidence and they chose not to, prefering to portray the incidence as a politically motivated decision rather than based on scientific evidence. There is simply no evidence that homosexuality is, per se, a mental disorder. It might very well be a moral disorder, but it isn't a mental disorder. It might be that you are confusing the two. That isn't to say that homosexuals don't suffer from mental disorders that are related to anxiety over their sexuality. It's just that NARTH believes that homosexuality is intrinsically a mental disorder (I'll stress it again) and there just isn't any evidence for that.

As to the APA categorically opposing reparative therapy as an option, it is unsurprising. First, there is (and I sound like a broken record) absolutely no evidence of it being successful. NARTH is very iffy on reporting their success rates.


Dan R.
Re your response to ajesquire: Of course the NARTH treatment makes sense given their position on the cause and nature of homosexuality. The problem is there is absolutely no evidence supporting their opinion.

Mary Kay

Michael, I have no reason to believe that the reports about the 1973 APA conference were erroneous but at this point, it's a "he said, she said" so I won't pursue it.

Your repeated insistence that homosexuality was removed as a diagnostic category was because of lack of scientific evidence prompted me to refer to an historical overview of mental health.

At that time, there was little or no empirical evidence for any diagnostic category. Empirical research hit its stride after homosexuality was removed as a diagnostic category.

I have yet to see a credible reason for the removal of homosexuality as a diagnostic category other than political pressure. If you can produce a credible explanation, please do so.

The "broken record" about NARTH is not surprising given that their results are routinely dismissed, for example that results are "only anecdotal."

The crux of the matter is the premise of what normal sexuality is. Normal sexuality has meant male and female. The APA statements for the past 30 years have tried without any scientific basis to change what 'normal' is simply by their say so.

I have yet to see a credible reason for the removal of homosexuality as a diagnostic category other than political pressure. If you can produce a credible explanation, please do so.

"In 1973, the APA removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders. While it is true that protests by gay rights activists provided the impetus to reevaluate the APA's earlier position, it is not correct that the final decision was based on political considerations. The reevaluation was done by a scientific committee of the APA which was chaired by Robert Spitzer, M.D. The committee looked at early psychoanalytic claims that homosexuality was an illness (i.e., Rado, 1940; Bieber et al, 1962, Socarides, 1968) and weighed them against studies that argued that homosexuality was not an illness (i.e., Kinsey et al, 1948, 1953; Ford and Beach, 1951; Hooker, 1957; Marmor, 1965). It was the weighing of the scientific evidence, and not political pressure that led to the APA's decision to remove homosexuality from the diagnostic manual.

It should be noted that the psychoanalytic practitioners of that era who disagreed with the APA's decision have themselves politicized the discussion. For example, after the scientific committee made its decision, those who disagreed with it called for a membership vote on the issue. A petition to force the APA referendum -- a political vote on a scientific decision -- was forged and signed by 200 people at a meeting of the American Psychoanalytic Association. After they lost the vote, some have presented a distorted history of those events. For example, in addition to false claims that the change was entirely political, Socarides (1995) has even accused the APA of miscounting the referendum votes...

Very truly yours,
Jack Drescher, M.D., APA"

Heterosexuality as a biological imperative was disputed by Ford and Beach (1951), whose studies of non-human primates and supernumerary gender traditions among non-European societies provided cross-cultural and cross-species counterexamples. Marmor argued that vegetarians and celibate people also violate presumed biological norms but are not labeled mentally ill (Stoller, et al., 1973, p.1208). Marmor's additional observation of gay and lesbian people who were "happy with their lives and have made a constructive and realistic adaptation to being of a minority group in our society" was key to the APA's conclusion that homosexuality did not represent an inherent disadvantage in all cultures or subcultures.

Evelyn Hooker's study in the late 1950's showed that homosexuality is not a clinical entity and that homosexuality is not inherently associated with psychopathology. Hooker's findings have since been replicated by many other investigators using a variety of research methods. Freedman (1971), for example, used Hooker's basic design to study lesbian and heterosexual women. Instead of projective tests, he administered objectively-scored personality tests to the women. His conclusions were similar to those of Hooker.

Thomas Szasz's (1961) broad criticism of psychiatric classification also had a profound influence in the sexual orientation debate and later changes in the definition of mental illness. His skepticism that antecedent life experiences causally determine behavioral phenomena was reflected in the APA decision of 1973.

In a review of published studies comparing homosexual and heterosexual samples on psychological tests, Gonsiorek (1982) found that, although some differences have been observed in test results between homosexuals and heterosexuals, both groups consistently score within the normal range. Gonsiorek concluded that "Homosexuality in and of itself is unrelated to psychological disturbance or maladjustment. Homosexuals as a group are not more psychologically disturbed on account of their homosexuality."

Confronted with overwhelming empirical evidence and changing cultural views of homosexuality, psychiatrists and psychologists radically altered their views, beginning in the 1970s.

Melvin Sabshin, M.D., a member of the APA Board of Trustees in the early 1970s and chair of the Scientific Program Committee at that time, described how the alienation gay psychiatrists felt from their APA colleagues led in 1970 to the start of a concerted push for APA to include them in decision making and address their concerns and those of gay patients.

If there was an official kickoff for APA's newly energized gay psychiatrists, it was the 1970 annual meeting in San Francisco, Sabshin suggested, where Gay Liberation Front activists along with political protesters in support of other social and political causes disrupted the meeting. "It was guerilla theater" at that meeting and the one held in Washington, D.C., the next year, he said.

Indeed, the emergence of a powerful gay rights political movement in the early 1970s, for all its controversy, was not congruent with the psychoanalytic portrait of distressed, disabled, and dependent gays and lesbians.

The onset in 1970 of a decline in psychoanalysis's dominance of the field also contributed to the change of mood in psychiatry about pathologizing homosexuality, he noted.

In 1972, for the first time, the annual APA meeting featured exhibits and discussions spotlighting positive aspects of the lives of gay individuals. Also during that year well-known psychiatrists such as Richard Green, M.D., Judd Marmor, M.D., and John Spiegel, M.D., began openly challenging psychiatrists' attitudes toward and treatment of homosexual patients, Sabshin observed. Marmor, a psychoanalyst who would soon be elected APA president, played a particularly significant role in trying to bridge the chasm that existed between his psychoanalytic colleagues and psychiatrists who were convinced that homosexuality was not an illness.

While many APA members welcomed the new openness and opportunities to reassess their thinking, the stubborn polarization and factionalism that dogged this issue did not suddenly retreat into a quiet corner.

Sabshin credited the chair of APA's Committee on Nomenclature in the early 1970s, Robert Spitzer, M.D., with playing a pivotal role in propelling the evolution of APA's position on homosexuality. That committee was charged with revising the initial version of DSM, and Spitzer -- armed with research showing there were no valid data to link homosexuality and mental illness -- advocated forcefully for the strategy of deleting homosexuality from the disorders list and replacing it with a new one called "sexual orientation disturbance."

In a key vote in December 1973, the Board of Trustees overwhelmingly endorsed Spitzer's recommendation. Opponents of the decision attempted to overturn it, and failed, with a referendum of the APA membership in early 1974 -- just as Sabshin was beginning his 23-year tenure as APA medical director. The Board's decision to delete homosexuality from the diagnostic manual was supported by 58 percent of the membership.

The new diagnostic category, however, was criticized professionally on numerous grounds. It was viewed by many as a political compromise to appease those psychiatrists – mainly psychoanalysts – who still considered homosexuality a pathology. In 1986, the diagnosis was removed entirely from the DSM.

Some psychologists and psychiatrists still hold negative personal attitudes toward homosexuality. However, empirical evidence and professional norms do not support the idea that homosexuality is a form of mental illness or is inherently linked to psychopathology.

Matt, what you missed was that both instances were health related rather than Catechism related.

The first was when you crossed the line to pronounce what was "good for a patient's health."

The second was specifically and solely about therapy. (btw, you still haven't told me what you thought "flies in the face of Catholic teaching)

A health professional sees people of various religious persuasions. If the patient is Catholic, then their reason for being seen can be discussed in terms of Catholic teaching. If the patient is not Catholic, then the health provider can't quote the Catechism to the patient.

Since both instances had a medical focus rather than a Catechism focus, I'm not going to take your litmus test


What I said was "It is a disorder. If it can be expunged it should be for the spiritual and material health of the patient. If it can't be expunged IT MUST be suppressed for the spiritual and material health of the patient."

Practicing homosexuality is unhealthy spiritually and materially, wouldn't you agree? therefore suggest that these urges must be suppressed.


I do not understand you're discomfort with confirming your assent to Catholic teaching. Go ahead and ask me about ANY CCC number and I'll confirm my assent, I won't evade.

Mary Kay

Matt,

Since this thread has degenerated, this will be my last post.

Let me be very clear to you. I have no "discomfort" about Catholic teaching. Nor is it "evading" to discuss the medical aspects of a topic.

You clearly have NO CLUE what I was talking about. Whether that's because you are unable or unwilling to understand is unknown to me.

You made the straw man argument that my post "flew in the face of Catholic teaching," was unable to back up your allegation, then proceeded to question my faithfulness to Catholic teaching.

How arrogant of you to think that anyone needs to defend their faithfulness of Church teaching to you.

Mary Kay

Anonymous (Michael?), I forgot to say that you're right that you didn't change my mind, but I do appreciate the additional perspective.

Daniel A.

Here's a quote from the article posted about by the person who doesn't use a name:
"Homosexuality, Levy asserts, is a mental disorder, a certifiable neurosis. "The psychoanalytic perspective has always considered homosexuality and same-sex attraction to be a neurosis. They still do and they still treat it." (In fact, mental health associations do not consider homosexuality a neurosis and do not "treat" patients for it. Dr. Douglas Haldeman, president of the Association of Practicing Psychologists, a group affiliated with the American Psychological Association, says it is wrong to identify homosexuality as a neurosis. "There is no scientific evidence of that, and there is no mainstream mental health organization or profession that supports this ancient, discredited theory," he says.)"

I simply wanted to correct the assumption of the article that when Dr. Levy says that "The psychoanalytic perspective has always considered homosexuality and same-sex attraction to be a neurosis. They still do and they still treat it" he means that mainstream psychology in general holds this view and treats homosexuality. "The psychoanalytic perspective" does not equal "all psychologists" by any means. Psychoanalysis is a particular theory, based on Freudian thought. When Dr. Levy makes this statement, he is not asserting a false claim that most psychologists see homosexuality as a neurosis, but rather that those who follow Freud's ideas would largely see it that way, and that those (or at least those who he believes truly follow the theory) would wish to treat homosexuality and attempt to repair it.

I simply wanted to correct the assumption of the article that when Dr. Levy says that "The psychoanalytic perspective has always considered homosexuality and same-sex attraction to be a neurosis. They still do and they still treat it" he means that mainstream psychology in general holds this view and treats homosexuality.

What you mean to say is that mainstream psychology in general does NOT hold the view that homosexuality and same-sex attraction are a neurosis, but, as you then go to say, "rather that those who follow Freud's ideas [i.e. the minority who follow the psychoanalytic perspective] would largely see it that way."

Daniel A.

Yes, that is what I'm saying. Though I myself do not have a strong opinion as to whether homosexuality is a mental disorder (I believe it is a disordered tendency from a moral standpoint, but that does not mean it is necessarily a mental disorder), I do see that the majority of psychologists do not believe it to be a mental disorder. However, Freud most likely would have seen it as such, and thus a strict Freudian, of which there are few, would probably at least theoretically be willing to pursue reparative therapy for it. Basically all I am saying is that Dr. Levy does not seem to me to be asserting that most psychologists agree with his viewpoint, but rather that he himself is a Freudian (I assume he is, otherwise this quote makes little sense) and that his opinions are within the tradition of Freudian thought.

Of course, I don't know whether his statement was meant to decieve anyone, as the article suggests it was. Perhaps he expected his audience to be ignorant of the difference between "psychoanalytic theory" and "psychology". I do not know him nor am I familiar with his work to judge what his intentions are. However, I would say that on the face of it his statement is truthful, though the article in question claims it is not.

Daniel A.

Furthermore, I do find the explanation of homosexuality in the article rather interesting. In my experience, boys raised in families like the one described (cruel father, mother identifying with son, etc.) are in fact more likely to be PERCIEVED as gay. That is, they tend to have some of the characteristics people associate with homosexuality, and be percieved as such by classmates and other peers. However, I do not know that they are more likely to actually BE homosexual. It would be interesting to see how early perception and classification as a homosexual by peers affects later sexual orientation. And of course my own experience with people raised in such homes is merely anecdotal in itself...I suppose the great problem with psychoanalytic theory is that it is anecdotal. If a person is a certain way, the psychoanalyst knows this, and must come up with a reason, which as shown in the article can result in the psychoanalyst suggesting one reason, being told it is not the case, and then moving on to another reason. This is one reason why psychoanalysis is out of favor with many: it cannot really be tested. Though it is quite interesting and rings true at times, and I'm sure it can be useful for therapy with some patients, it cannot be empirically demonstrated in most cases.

Perhaps the author of the article, like most people, did not himself catch the distinction between psychoanalytic theory and modern psychology, or simply did not use words that revealed his knowledge of it, deferring instead to the words of Dr. Douglas Haldeman, president of the Association of Practicing Psychologists, to discredit it. I find no indication in the article that Dr. Levy bothered to point out any such distinction or that he revealed his ancient views were widely rejected by modern psychologists, other than to say his work is "politically incorrect." Perhaps he said more. We can't tell.

Perhaps the author of the article, like most people, did not himself catch the distinction between psychoanalytic theory and modern psychology, or simply did not use words that revealed his knowledge of it, deferring instead to the words of Dr. Douglas Haldeman, president of the Association of Practicing Psychologists, to discredit it. I find no indication in the article that Dr. Levy bothered to point out any such distinction or that he revealed his ancient views were widely rejected by modern psychologists, other than to say his work is "politically incorrect." Perhaps he said more. We can't tell.

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