Joseph Nicolosi, Ph.D. 1947 - 2017
Dr. Nicolosi graduated from the New School for Social Research (M.A.) and received his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology, Los Angeles. He was licensed as a psychologist in California. He passed away suddenly in 2017.
Dr. Nicolosi was a pioneer in the history of psychology. His profession was fast abandoning the classic understanding of sexuality as being rooted in design and purpose-- i.e., "normality is that which functions in accordance with its design," -- but he refused to be carried along with the tide. Although quite a few colleagues professed agreement with him in private, only a very few were willing to say so publicly. There was always a steep career cost to be paid for disagreeing with the gay lobby. But Dr. Nicolosi was undeterred; he continued to promote the classic understanding of homosexuality as an attachment loss rooted in trauma. He found support for this view in the rich trove of psychodynamic literature and in research on attachment and individuation. At the time of his death, he was working on a book that would revive this now-abandoned body of case studies and psychoanalytic literature written by the founding fathers and mothers of his profession.
In 1980, he founded the Thomas Aquinas Psychological Clinic in Encino, California, and served as Clinical Director. Although he worked with a wide variety of clients, his specialty was the treatment of men who wished to diminish their same-sex attractions and develop their heterosexual potential.
Dr. Nicolosi was one of three founding members--and former President--of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), a 1,000-member professional association founded in 1992 (www.narth.com). NARTH’s goal is –
- To support mental-health professionals who work with same-sex-attracted clients seeking change.
- To promote respect within the mental-health profession for worldview diversity—whether a person seeks to identify as gay, or to work toward developing his heterosexual potential.
The NARTH website is viewed by over 100,000 visitors each month. It is the only secular group in the U.S. which protects the rights of therapists to counsel clients with unwanted homosexuality.
Dr. Nicolosi’s Published Books
Reparative Therapy of Male Homosexuality, 1992 (published by Jason Aronson, Inc.)
Healing Homosexuality, 1994 (Jason Aronson, Inc.)
A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality, 2002 (Intervarsity Press)
Shame and Attachment Loss: The Practical Work of Reparative Therapy, 2009 (InterVarsity Press)
A Parent's Guide to Preventing Homosexuality
Reparative Therapy of Male Homosexuality
Shame and Attachment Loss
Healing Homosexuality: Case Stories of Reparative Therapy
Nicolosi, Joseph (1993). “Psychotherapy Can Change Sexual Orientation,” in Homosexuality: Opposing Viewpoints. D. Bender and B. Leone, Eds., San Diego, CA.: Greenhaven Press, pp.126-132.
Nicolosi, Joseph, (1994). “What Does Science Teach About Homosexuality?” in Caught in the Crossfire: Helping Christians Debate Homosexuality, S. Geis and D. Messer, Eds., Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press, pp. 67-77.
Nicolosi, Joseph (1999) “The Gay Deception,” in Homosexuality and American Public Life, edited by Christopher Wolfe. Dallas, TX: Spence.
Nicolosi, Joseph (2009) “The Meaning of Same-Sex Attraction,” in Handbook of Therapy for Unwanted Homosexual Attractions: A Guide to Treatment,” Julie Harren-Hamilton and Philip Henry, Eds., Xulon Press.
Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles
Nicolosi, Joseph, (2016), "The Traumatic Foundation of Male Homosexuality," Crisis Magazine, December 19, 2016.
Nicolosi, Joseph, (2012), "A Call for a Psychologically Informed Ministry for Homosexual Catholics," in Amare Nella Differenza: Le Forme Della Sessualita e Il Pensiero Cattolico: Studio Interdisciplinare, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, Cita del Vaticano, pp. 523-535.
A.D. Byrd, Joseph Nicolosi, and R.W. Potts (February 2008), “Clients’ Perceptions of How Reorientation Therapy and Self-Help Can Promote Changes in Sexual Orientation,” Psychological Reports 102, pp. 3-28.
Nicolosi, Joseph, October, 2003 “Finally, Recognition of a Long-Neglected Population,” Archives of Sexual Behavior, , vol. 32, no, 5, pp. 445-447.
Nicolosi, Joseph, Byrd, D., Potts, R.W. (June, 2002). “A Critique of Bem’s “Exotic Becomes Erotic” Theory of Sexual Orientation Development,” Psychological Reports 90: 931-946.
Nicolosi, Joseph, Byrd, D., Potts, R.W. (June, 2002). “A Meta-Analytic Review of Treatment of Homosexuality,” Psychological Reports 90: 1139-1152.
Nicolosi, Joseph (2001) “A Developmental Model for Effective Treatment of Male Homosexuality: Implications for Pastoral Counseling,” American J. of Pastoral Counseling, vol. 3, no.3/4, pp. 87-99.
Nicolosi, Joseph, (2001) “The Removal of Homosexuality from the Psychiatric Manual,” The Catholic Social Science Review, Volume VI, p. 71-77.
Nicolosi, J., Byrd, A. Dean, Potts, R.W. (June 2000). “Retrospective Self-Reports of Changes in Homosexual Orientation, A Consumer Survey of Conversion Therapy Clients,” Psychological Reports, 86: 1071-1088.
Nicolosi, Joseph, Byrd, D., Potts, R.W. (April 2000) “Beliefs and Practices of Therapists Who Practice Sexual Reorientation Psychotherapy,” Psychological Reports 86, 689-702.
Nicolosi, Joseph, (1993). “Treatment of the Non-Gay Homosexual Man,” The Journal of Pastoral Counseling, Vol. XXVIII, p. 76-82.
International Training Seminars for Therapists Given by Joseph Nicolosi
- Reichelsheim, Germany in 1998
- Reichelsheim, Germany in 2003
- Milan, Italy in Sept. 2004
- Berlin, Germany, in Sept. 2006
- London, England, in May 2007
- Mexico City, Mexico, May 2008
- Frankfurt, Germany, June 2008
- Rome, Italy, Sept. 2008
- London, England, 2009
- Mexico City, 2011
- Poznan, Poland, 2011
- Jerusalem, Israel, June 2013
- Buenos Aires, Argentina, September 2013
- Rome, Italy, May 2015
“Clinical Outcomes for Same-Sex Attraction Distress: Change and Well-Being,” Presentation with Carolyn Pela, Ph.D. at the Christian Association for Psychological Studies (CAPS) Annual Conference, Pasadena, California, March 10, 2016.
In 2005, Dr. Nicolosi was the recipient of the Pacific Justice Institute's "Faith and Community" award.
In 2009, he received the 14th annual Presidents' Award from the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH) was "for his unwavering commitment to those who struggle with unwanted homosexuality,and to those professionals who serve them."
In 2010, he was recognized by the Society of Catholic Social Scientists "for Catholic social action."