How to Become an Ex-Gay Man

Most ex-gay men agree with the basic reparative therapy tenets. That is, homosexuals are created from a child's family dynamics. Usually, a distant, aloof father and an overbearing, over controlling mother OR from some sort of sexual abuse. In reparative therapy, if one treats these mental wounds or experiences, it is possible to convert some gay men into normal men wanting sex with women.

While many disagree with the theory of some are born "gay", the Aquinas Psychological Clinic, which is the largest reparative therapy in California, states that all men are born heterosexual but their environment during development alters it and creates homosexual tendencies. Many gay men, once their deep personal family trauma has been thoroughly dealt with, become normal and want relationships with women. The treatment is often not quick, but years, it often, but not always, reverses the desires of a gay man. There is overwhelming proof that reparative therapy does work on many gay men but it is not 100% effective. It alters a man's sexual behavior.

In one case, a gay man of 15 years and having sex daily was helped by this therapy. For whatever reason, he was not happy as a gay man, so he started reparative therapy and after two years no longer wanted sex with men and seldom thinks about a man. Other gay men try to bury this desire in marriages to women as they battle urges.

Reparative therapy is controversial as to its effectiveness. Like any treatment, results vary from effective to not effective. Like any drug addiction, reversals occur, but there are also success stories from gay men who seek to be normal.

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Comments 17 comments

Thundermama profile image

Thundermama 4 years ago from Canada

I was speechless when I read this title. Hmmmm...another route to go would to be be happy with who you are. Just a thought. Very curious to read what others have to say on this.

DanaTeresa profile image

DanaTeresa 4 years ago from Ohio

I agree with Thundermama. It is about being happy withwho you are. If someone is happy being gay, by all means I think they should stay that way. If they are unhappy, then I think therapy would be a good choice. The end result of that therapy all depends on what is best for them... I know straight people that have become celebate. Not becaase they aren't straight and not becuase they are attracted to women. It is simply a lifestyle choice that they are happier with.... I am also interestedto see other's comments on this.

rmcleve profile image

rmcleve 4 years ago from Woodbridge, VA

What an interesting hub. While I appreciate the insight and viewpoints, this does go against my fundamental beliefs in human behavior and personality. But again, it is useful for those in need of this information.

For more on what I think, go ahead and check on my hub on "What are the Types and Meanings of Sexual Orientations?"

perrya profile image

perrya 4 years ago Author

Well, like all therapy, the results vary. Yes, if u are happy being gay, then obviously, there is no need for therapy or change. So, it is only for those being torn for whatever reason about being gay. For those, it would seem a good place to start.

krillco profile image

krillco 4 years ago from Hollidaysburg, PA

'Absurd' is the only word I can come up with. One's sexual orientation is hard wired. Any talk of changing it is as inane as insisting the world is flat.

perrya profile image

perrya 4 years ago Author

Actually, what is absurd is thinking one is born into being gay. A baby is a clean slate and the environment etc. all form much of its soul. Yes, some genetics is there, but it is unknown to them until the environment brings it out, if it does.

CR Rookwood profile image

CR Rookwood 4 years ago from Moonlight Maine

Homosexuality is not an illness so it's hard to understand how any kind of therapy could 'fix' it. The theories you cite in this article were discredited by mainstream psychology and psychiatry years ago. No properly credential therapist would ever try to 'cure' a homosexual.

It seems to me that some men put themselves through this reparative 'therapy' to better fit themselves into a set of religious beliefs. It isn't really fair to the women they are with and it only hurts these men in the long run.

johndnathan profile image

johndnathan 4 years ago from Dallas, Texas. USA

It is a discouraging notion that homosexuality is seen as a sickness in this country. Of course in the matter of sexual orientation most people are bisexual to one degree or another. Someone that says they've been cured from their homosexual tendencies is most likely a bisexual person who has wavered on their sexual identity.

It is best to love yourself no matter what your sexual orientation happens to be, because that is part of who you are. You may be able to change your behaviors, but you cannot change your feelings.

perrya profile image

perrya 4 years ago Author

@john- good point, maybe the men where this therapy works are bi or more undecided even after many years. Not all psychologists discredit reparative therapy and like in medical journals about various studies, there are differing opinions all the time.

aethelthryth profile image

aethelthryth 4 years ago from American Southwest

Homosexuality, particularly in men, does not lead to health or long life, with all the deadly STDs out there, and I'm not talking about AIDS. It is no more attacking the person to help him change his desires than it is attacking a smoker to help him change his desire for something that causes far less harm than STDs.

I wonder how young one must be to not have experienced in oneself that desires change over time, in everyone! (As a minor example, who has not been affected by Hollywood's definition of beauty? Is it a good thing to date and marry in accordance with real beauty rather than follow one's desire for Hollywood beauty?)

It is not enough to say something has been discredited, especially on an inflammatory topic. It is important to know, who discredited it, when, how, and was there any pressure on them, such as the pressure on perrya when he publishes an article about current events, without even expressing his own opinion, and immediately he gets jumped on with comments saying he is attacking homosexuals, when he is not.

johndnathan profile image

johndnathan 4 years ago from Dallas, Texas. USA

Aethelthryth, I'm going to have to disagree with you.

When you're referring to STD's you're referring to the stereotypical male homosexual lifestyle, which is more fiction than fact. STD's do not limit themselves to one particular sexual orientation. They affect all equally.

The truth of the matter is, the difference between a heterosexual and a homosexual is the gender that the person is attracted to.

That's it!

Every other promiscuous trait you attribute to homosexuals are found in people who have promiscuous lifestyles, and that involves people of every sexual orientation.

krillco profile image

krillco 4 years ago from Hollidaysburg, PA

I know many, many elderly gay couples who have been together for decades...and they are healthy. In some ways, healthier than heterosexual couples I know.

perrya profile image

perrya 4 years ago Author

I think this topic is getting sidetracked. It is about whether reparative therapy works, if it does, why does it work on those formerly gay men? there is nothing wrong with a gay person, I love Modern Family with the diversity. There is nothing wrong with a gay man trying to be normal, to be attracted to women. It is their choice.

krillco profile image

krillco 4 years ago from Hollidaysburg, PA

But a gay man IS 'normal'. 'Reparative therapy' is not therapy, and it does not work. Such therapists often inflate and exaggerate their 'success' numbers. Check out the active sexuality of their 'successes' one year ,five years, ten years later. If a straight person cannot be convinced to be gay, a gay person cannot be convinced to be straight.

perrya profile image

perrya 4 years ago Author

Normal is subjective open to opinion. gay men would have your point of view krillco.

jlpark profile image

jlpark 4 years ago from New Zealand

Reparative therapy has been ruled as abusive in many cases. Programmes like Exodus etc are frowned upon. Why? Because they don't work.

Those 'cured' of homosexuality often aren't straight - they are still gay, but no longer act on their homosexual feelings, or even any others sexual feelings. They are often celibate, and consider themselves 'cured" - but a sex life is HEALTHY.

I agree with krillco's comment - If a straight person cannot be convinced to be gay. a gay person cannot be convinced to be straight.

There is a reason that homosexuality was left out of the DSM IV - it's not a mental illness, it's not something that needs curing. What needs to be cured, for those who struggle with their own homosexuality - is the intolerance and hatred they are surrounded with - if you are told that what you are is wrong, you will be convinced that you are. These men are often from families who insist they need to be cured....

It's sad. And it doesn't work.

Love them, and let them love.

perrya profile image

perrya 4 years ago Author

I guess the debate continues.Whether a gay man is cured or not is fairly subjective. Like studies have shown, sometimes it works and sometimes not.

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