There is increasing public and professional debate over the normality and treatability of male homosexuality. This warrants a return to the earliest professional understandings of the condition, i.e., the origins of Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalytic theory.
Homosexuality is not fixed and unchangeable, as these public figures reveal. Some of them celebrate their sexual fluidity as a good thing; others believe that the only true expression of sexuality is heterosexuality, since it is consistent with our biological design.
The book “A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality” by Joseph Nicolosi, published in 2002, is now in the process of being reprinted for a 2016 edition. See comments by some of Dr. Nicolosi’s colleagues.
Dr. Gagnon is considered "the foremost traditionalist interpreter" on the issue of homosexuality in relation to Christianity and the Bible, and has published several books and articles on the subject, such as The Bible and Homosexual Practice.
Dr. Vennum is a psychiatrist with a medical doctor degree from the University of Florida and a masters degree in professional mental health counseling from Liberty University. He is President Elect of NARTH, the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality.
Opponents of the practice say that it involves shaming the client, causing him to deny his true self, and breaking up family ties. I would like to take this opportunity to explain what reparative therapy actually is.
This is the paradox of reparative therapy: it is successful only if the client first faces and accepts his unwanted feelings. The more the person sees the thing inside himself that he rejects, and sees it in the light of truth, the more it dissipates. The task is not to look away from the feelings, but to look through them.
The primary focus of reparative therapy for men is always on the healing of same-sex relationships. A reparative therapist strongly encourages the establishment of healthy, non-erotic friendships with men.
When the client opens up his emotional life to the therapist, he has engaged in an act of trust which links him to the therapist in an elegant, intimate “dance.” The central healing process of psychotherapy is this experience of attunement.
In recent years, I have been gratified to see an increasing number of graduate students interested in working with same-sex attracted (SSA) clients who seek change. Some of these young students struggled with this issue in their own personal lives, and now, they want to take the lessons they learned to help others.
Any time a vital attachment bond fails to develop, the person must address the shame of not having felt authentically known and validated. When he becomes an adult, he must acknowledge and grieve this loss. Grief resolution allows him to release these body-held memories, and in the process, to mourn the loss.
The gender-identity phase of development is marked by a surge of "ambition" to achieve gender competence. When there is a failure in this phase of development, a core identity injury results. Grief work helps the client overcome the injury.