Although homosexuality is becoming less stigmatized in American culture, gays and lesbians still face strong social, familial, financial, or career pressures to “convert” to being heterosexuals. In this groundbreaking book, longtime psychiatrist Martin Kantor, MD—himself homosexual and once immersed in therapy to become “straight”—explains why so-called “reparative therapy” is not only ineffective, but should not be practiced due its faulty theoretical bases and the deeper, lasting damage it can cause.
This standout work delves into the history of reparative therapy, describes the findings of major research studies, and discusses outcome studies and ethical and moral considerations. Author Kantor identifies the serious harm that can result from reparative therapy, exposes the religious underpinnings of the process, and addresses the cognitive errors reparative therapy practitioners make while also recognizing some positive features of this mode of treatment. One section of the book is dedicated to discussing the therapeutic process itself, with a focus on therapeutic errors that are part of its fabric. Finally, the author identifies affirmative eclectic therapy—not reparative therapy—as an appropriate avenue for gays who feel they need help, with goals of resolving troubling aspects of their lives that may or may not be related to being homosexual, and of self-acceptance rather than self-mutation.
- Presents thorough descriptions of the various reparative therapies, contrasts these techniques with traditional therapy, and exposes the faulty theoretical bases of this form of treatment
- Details the author psychiatrist's unsuccessful 5-year-long therapeutic attempt to change his own homosexuality
- Provides essential information that gays and their parents need to know before embarking on what the author feels is a futile course of changing sexual orientation. The content will enlighten politicians and reparative therapists themselves as well
- Supplies an essential, informed counterpoint to the existing literature on reparative therapy