published Friday, November 4th, 2011

Study asks, 'Is it possible to cure homosexuality?'

  • photo
    Stanton Jones of Wheaton College initiated the study.
    Photo by The Tennessean
Is sexual orientation flexible?

Christian conservatives once latched on to Exodus International as proof that God could cure homosexuality.

Now Exodus itself, which has a Nashville affiliate, says that’s not always the case.

Ninety-eight of its longtime members participated in a study published in the October issue of the Journal of Sex & Marital Therapy, a peer-reviewed scientific journal. After seven years, 72 still were participating in the study, and of those, nearly a quarter said their orientation had changed. A third said they had lessened same-sex attraction and were celibate.

Even with its mixed results, both the researchers and the American Psychological Association fear the study could be used to force people into ex-gay ministries like Exodus, which neither group believes is appropriate.

Continue reading at The Tennessean.

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onetinsoldier said...

Is it possible to cure christians? If you don't like that question, think about it.

November 4, 2011 at 11:24 a.m.
chatttn said...

I get it Onetin, and I agree.

November 4, 2011 at 11:37 a.m.

Are you saying some people claim they were born christian? What gene causes that? For people so concerned about nature and the way things are supposed to be "naturally" and how man is adversely affecting nature, you must have to do alot of acrobatics to ignore the role nature has assigned you by giving you a cerain sex.
Let's compare homosexuality to one of your favorite lies, global warming. If nature is being disrupted by man changing the climate, trying to prevent the changes is a good thing right? Man shouldn't violate the natural order of things like that. The sexes are designed by nature, but here we have a group of men violating that order threatening the natural order of things. Why do you support one violation of the natural order of things and decry another? Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?

November 4, 2011 at 11:48 a.m.

So let the christians believe what they want to believe. You and I don't have to go along, do we?

I don't believe in atheists.

November 4, 2011 at 11:56 a.m.

I love it Bookie. Hillarious. I don't believe in social justice.

November 4, 2011 at 12:17 p.m.
onetinsoldier said...

The natural order of things presents the world with hermaphrodites. The natural order of things presents the world with asexual, bisexual and multiple partnered cohabitation. The natural order of things presents the world with evolution.

Swim upstream if it pleases you, but your destination is down stream. Are you aware that men aren't necessary for reproduction any longer. Sperm can and has been created from stem cells. How does that fit your natural order?

November 4, 2011 at 12:19 p.m.

It seems you think your destination is predetermined. I am in control of mine. I swim where I will. So if man one day cures homosexuality, is that o.k.?

November 4, 2011 at 12:29 p.m.
dropstep said...

Decades ago homosexuality was described, even by Psychiatrist, as caused by "arrested mental development". The proper term we should use is SSA (same sex attraction). People may struggle with SSA, but they don't have to act on their attraction. Some humans have an attraction to all types of things sexually, but they can't act on them (or they should not). Get to the core, the early years, of a homosexual and there is many times an event(s) that sparked the mental aspect.

November 4, 2011 at 12:38 p.m.
tipper said...

I don't think so. It's obviously certainly not possible to cure religious ignorance.

November 4, 2011 at 12:38 p.m.
fisher18_80 said...

FlyingPurpleSheepleEater assumes that homosexuality isn't the natural path for man, but there are constant examples of homosexuality in nature.

Groups like Exodus simply shame these poor men into repressing all sexual feelings and living a lonely, celibate life. Notice that a third of Exodus men said they weren't straight but had simply stopped having sex with anyone.

I personally know a gay man who went to "straight boot camp," and I can assure you it didn't work.

Christians should embrace homosexual since even the Bible is vague on homosexuality and it simply says nothing about marriage -- straight or otherwise.

Read "What Does The Bible Actually Say About Gay Marriage?"

November 4, 2011 at 12:45 p.m.
JustOneWoman said...

FlyingPurpleSheepleEater said... It seems you think your destination is predetermined. I am in control of mine. I swim where I will.

Can't believe I am agreeing with FPSE!

In this country, we can be whatever the $#@$# we want to be. It matters not whether a gay person is born with it or chooses the lifestyle. We can swim upstream, downstream, or just tread the water. And what any person does in bed is none of your or my business.

Thanks FPSE

November 4, 2011 at 1:56 p.m.
jesse said...

i think MOST homosexuals are BORN QUEER,like being born left handed or blue eyed. they have no control over it .

BUT they ARE one dimensional in the fact that their sexual orientation is the central focus of WHO THEY ARE!!they DONOT ACT NORMAL!(generaly speaking that is!)

November 4, 2011 at 1:58 p.m.
LibDem said...

"BUT they ARE one dimensional in the fact that their sexual orientation is the central focus of WHO THEY ARE!!they DONOT ACT NORMAL!"

NORMAL guys have to think hard when choosing between sex and a sandwich.

November 4, 2011 at 3:12 p.m.
mtngrl said...

"Normal" is relative.

And Jesse, you apparently do not know many gay people (or do not know you do). There are many gays out there that you would never know are gay without knowing them really really well. This is not an area of the country where many are open about it. The vast majority are very "normal" people and very multi-dimensional. It only seems the central focus of who they are when they feel condemned for it.

November 4, 2011 at 3:18 p.m.
steve_smith said...

I don't know how malleable sexual orientation is. However, we have all been lectured on how terrible it is to be homosexual, from discrimination to bullying to high rates of depression and even suicide. So it seems to me, if it is so terrible, and if there is a chance it could be medically changed, that people would strive to find a treatment, or God forbid a "cure."

But that is not how group dynamics works.

I once saw a documentary about hearing impaired culture. Parents who had a genetic predisposition for deafness grew up their entire lives within a hearing impaired culture. They socialized with other folks with impairments. They formed professional and commercial ties to other folks within their culture. Many had children, a few of whom could hear but most who couldn't. At the dawn of a new procedure that could "cure" the hearing impairment in utero, a significant number of parents chose not to fix their childrens' impairments for the stated reason that it would knock them out of their cultural group.

If you can imagine the incompleteness of a world without hearing Mozart or even the Rolling Stones, what must it be like to be unable to feel an attraction for the mother of your child? ------ It must not be incomplete at all. Because very few in that condition seem to want to be open to the possibility that such a condition can be changed. It is taboo to even consider such. The consensus is in. Mental health professionals have voted. Its normal. And if you watch t.v. it's the flavor of the week.

But who knows how the psychologists will vote next year? How many people might suffer but for a disinterested skepticism that science could bring to the table. Maybe its not malleable. Maybe there is no way to prevent it. Even though society should be more considerate of the plight of homosexuals, if even a few people could benefit by a closer look at the causes and/or treatments for the condition, it might profit us all to understand it more fully. But again, that doesn't mesh with the group dynamics at the moment. Even if the cause(s) were fully understood, I would bet a significant number would choose to remain homosexual. And to each his own.

For the moment, ignorance (of the causes of homosexuality) is bliss. Because for it to become a choice would render the specialness and victim-ness of it it moot.

November 4, 2011 at 3:37 p.m.

Justonewoman, I have to say I agree with you as well. I am fine with it as long as they don't start trying to push it on me. They can live their lives the way they want and I will live mine the way I see fit. This is still a great country and most of the people in it still believe in liberty.

Steve_smith You hit the nail right on the head. We don't know what causes it and people who are homosexual just accept it as normal because there is no proof it isn't beyond the fact that anatomy doesn't support procreation in that configuration. Group dynamics are responsible for all sorts of reprehensible behavior from racism, canibalism, discrimination and gangs to religion, charity, family and brotherhood. Two sides of the same coin. The humanity of the group leadership determines which side.

November 4, 2011 at 4:11 p.m.
01centare said...

Quote: Study asks, 'Is it possible to cure homosexuality?'

I'd think it would depend on how and why an individual is homosexual to begin with? Say, if someone, like a young friend of mine, was molested at a very young age by a same sex individual...that someone could grow believing that's the norm. Although he or she was born hetero. On the other hand, I've witnessed individuals from very very early ages exhibiting homosexual tendencies. That person was likely born that way. There's no magic bullet here. That's why the change worked for some and not others, I'd think this would be the reason.

November 4, 2011 at 5:06 p.m.
DarkSky said...

What consenting adults do to each other is none of my buisness. And it isn't your buisness either.

November 4, 2011 at 7:04 p.m.
ChrisVogel said...

In fact, the true answer is "none". Pretending to be heterosexual, on the other hand, was the strategy normally adopted in homophobic societies until recently, although it is destructive to the individual (commonly leading to suicide) and to their families, especially opposite-sexed "spouses". And, pretending it still is. We (the Council on Homosexuality and Religion) studied "ex-gays" for more than a decade, with both personal interviews and literature search including both religious and medical "cures". We collected the numerous tracts issued by, or on behalf of, those who claimed to be "cured", although the majority of these could not then be contacted. We found that the average shelf-life of being "ex" was about six months; often the paper tracts were more durable and continued to be distributed long after the individual in question was ex-"ex". This is why ex-ex gays vastly outnumber those who are claiming to be "ex". A careful study of the tracts and other published accounts shows that, without exception, they continue, in their own words, to "struggle". That is to say, they are not "ex" anything. Our conclusion was that sexual orientation (heterosexual, bisexual, homosexual) was immutable; even "God" had no effect on it. It may be uncharitable to say of those who claim to be "ex-gay" and those who "cure" them, that they are frauds, but that will undoubtedly be the judgement of history.

November 4, 2011 at 8:09 p.m.
macropetala8 said...

Personally, I think the cured ones just go back into the closet and pretend.

November 4, 2011 at 9:21 p.m.
fiberopguy said...

Just let people be who they want to be!!! If the dudes aint hitting on you leave em be. I know a few gay dudes that are normal peeps.

November 4, 2011 at 10:45 p.m.
cheesy_rider said...

No need for fancy goverment grants and time consuming studies here! Just put a big ol' pretty vajayjay front of my face and see what the response is. Really,... I can't believe Christian Conservatives or Exodus Internationals would waste time on such a topic as homosexuality and reform when mankind can be saved by faith alone.

November 4, 2011 at 11:22 p.m.
Joyanna said...

It's amazing how the same men who think nothing of sexually harassing women get in a panic if they think they themselves might be the object of the type of unwanted advances that they make routinely toward women. Guys, really? Cowboy up. You'll survive it. Ask any middle school girl for some tips on dealing with unwelcome advances.

November 5, 2011 at 12:28 a.m.
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