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05/03/2024 in Psychotherapy

Five Actions to Dismantle Ableism in Everyday Life

To create order and structure within workplaces and communities, well-intentioned policies may overlook how they affect those around us. This is particularly true for those holding positions of influence, where…
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28/02/2024 in Psychotherapy

Understanding Alexithymia: When Emotions Are Perplexing

Discovering the term 'alexithymia' can be a revelation for those who've always found emotions perplexing. If you've ever felt at a loss for words to describe your feelings, or if…
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27/02/2024 in Psychotherapy

What Are the Benefits of Therapy When You Are Autistic, ADHD or Neurodivergent?

When you find out you're neurodivergent, it's as if suddenly, everything starts to make more sense. The daily hurdles, the challenges, and the strengths you possess—it all begins to fit…
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The rise in people looking for conversion therapy on my site led me to write this. If you’re seeking to change your sexual orientation or gender identity through conversion or reparative therapy, this is for you. Parents considering conversion therapy for their children should check out my blog post on Counselling Directory.

Here are the facts: Evidence shows that conversion therapy is harmful. Studies and organizations, including the World Health Organization (WHO), have highlighted the lack of proof that conversion therapy can change sexual orientation and have called it unethical due to the severe threat it poses to individuals’ health and rights.

Despite evidence against it, some individuals, desperate to change their sexual orientation or gender identity, consider conversion therapy. A UK Government Equality Office survey found a small percentage had been offered or undergone conversion therapy.

So what can you do?

Conversion therapy is unethical and damaging. Look for a therapist who respects and affirms who you are. If therapy feels too overwhelming right now, you have options:


References

  • Adelson, S. L. and American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) Committee on Quality Issues (CQI) , 2012. Practice parameter on gay, lesbian, or bisexual sexual orientation, gender nonconformity, and gender discordance in children and adolescents. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. V 51.9, 957-974.
  • American Psychological Association (APA) Task Force on the Appropriate Therapeutic Response to Sexual Orientation, 2009. Report of the Task Force on the Appropriate Therapeutic Response to Sexual Orientation. American Psychological Association, Washington, DC.
  • American Psychiatric Association (APA) Commission on Psychotherapy by Psychiatrists, 2000. Position statement on therapies focused on attempts to change sexual orientation (reparative or conversion therapies). American Journal for Psychiatry. V 157.10, 1719-1721.
  • Beckstead, A. L., 2012. Can we change sexual orientation?. Archive of Sexual Behavior. V 41.1, 121-134.
  • Beckstead, A. L. and Morrow, S. L., 2004. Mormon clients’ experiences of conversion therapy: The need for a new treatment approach. The Counseling Psychologist. V 32, 651-690.
  • Government Equalities Office, 2018. National LGBT Survey. United Kingdom.
    Haldeman, D. C., 2002. Therapeutic antidotes: Helping gay and bisexual men recover from conversion therapies. Journal of Gay & Lesbian Psychotherapy. V 5(3/4), 117-130.
  • Haldeman, D. C., 2002. Therapeutic antidotes: Helping gay and bisexual men recover from conversion therapies. Journal of Gay & Lesbian Psychotherapy. V 5(3/4), 117-130.
  • Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) (Regional Office of World Health Organization), 2012. Cures for an Illness that Does Not Exist: Purported Therapies Aimed at Changing Sexual Orientation Lack Medical Justification and are Ethically Unacceptable. Pan American Health Organization, Washington, DC.
  • Shidlo, A. and Schroeder, M., 2002. Changing sexual orientation: A consumers’ report. Professional Psychology: Research and Practice. V 33.2, 249-259.