Study Finds Shrinks Still try to “Cure” Gays
March 26, 2009
(ChattahBox)—A study just published today by BMC Psychiatry, an open access journal for mental health professionals, based in the UK, disturbingly found that a significant minority of practicing psychiatrists and therapists still try to “cure” their homosexuals patients. Researchers from the University College of London and St George’s, University of London, snail-mailed out questionnaires to over 1,400 mental health professionals, posing the question; of whether they would attempt to change a client’s sexual orientation if requested. A surprising 17 percent admitted to trying to “treat” homosexuality with therapy, despite the mental health profession finding such treatments ineffective and substantially harmful.
In response to the significant number of health professionals treating gay patients as if they have a disease that can be cured with therapy, the researchers launched a new website to chronicle the stories of gay patients who have been subjected to this quackery. Many of therapists who attempted to cure gay patients had negative feelings towards homosexuality, thinking it perverse and against God.
In other words, some health professionals are using discredited therapies that are widely known to hurt rather than help their patients. They are breaking their medical oaths of “do no harm,” because of their own religious or cultural feelings towards homosexuality.
The researchers want to raise awareness about the dangers and harm caused by so-called homosexuality treatments. Researchers say competent mental health professionals should value their gay patients as people, help them adjust to their situation, and help them see that there is nothing pathological about their sexual orientation.
Gay right’s activists are pleased that the researchers are making it clear, to health practitioners, that homosexual cures are widely discredited, misguided and do real harm to their patients.