As a 12-year old boy, James Guay relied on books and prayer to overcome his attraction to men. Eventually his parents led him to an “ex-gay” psychologist who promised to help Guay become attracted to women within six months to a year. Two months ago, Guay testified in a hearing presenting a new California bill to prohibit “gay cure” therapies such as the one he went through.
This is the first bill of its kind to be presented in the United States. Bill proponents expect the legislation to be signed and approved by Governor Jerry Brown (D) in late August. The bill will make it illegal for licensed therapists to use such treatments on minors.
"I wanted parents to understand that this therapy is crazy," said Sen. Ted Lieu, the bill’s author.
The bill, known as the SB 1172 is one many recent actions taken to abolish the practice. Mental health organizations such as the American Psychology Association and the American Psychiatric Association have renounced “gay cures”. The World Health Organization said that the therapies "lack medical justification and represent a serious threat to the health and well-being" of patients.
Robert L. Spitzer, a psychiatrist who once applied and created a study supporting the “gay cure” recently apologized for his work.
"I believe I owe the gay community an apology," Spitzer said.
For over three decades Exodus International created widespread campaigns promoting methods that could change a person’s sexual orientation. In June, the non-profit’s president released a statement acknowledging that there was no cure for homosexuality and those who claim that there is one are creating false hopes for gays.
However, there are still supporters of “gay cures” since there has been no scientific evidence proving that such therapies cause harm. David Pruden is one of those supporters.
Pruden, the vice president of the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality views the bill as a “solution in search of a problem."
He believes that "with the help of a well-trained therapist, [they can] move through a process where they grow away from homosexual attraction and move towards heterosexual attraction."
Pruden pointed to an example of a child molested by an adult of the same-sex.
“Now this bill is saying that for a therapist to suggest to someone that they're not gay is somehow illegal or would be wrong," he said.
Authors of the bill were very careful in determining the bill’s terminology as to not restrict help to minors who may simply want to turn to a therapist as they explore their sexuality.
"Quite naturally there are many times when an adolescent is exploring their sexual identity and they may want to talk to a therapist about that," said Jo Linder-Crow, the executive director of the California Psychological Association. "We wanted to make sure that legitimate therapy would not be caught up in the definition used in the bill."
In America’s early years, homosexuality was considered a mental illness and sodomy was punishable with jail time. After World War II, therapy became the most common practice in comparison to institutionalization or jail. In the 1970’s, the American Psychology Association removed homosexuality from the list of mental illness and the therapy practices were abandoned. But, they were later adopted by Christian organizations such as Exodus International.
"People have had these concerns about it for a long time," said Clinton Anderson, the director of the American Psychological Association's office for LGBT issues. "What may be different is a sense that there's a political will, at least in certain places, to do something more significant about it."
Guay spent a year with his ex-gay therapist and became involved in a relationship with a woman. But, it did not work out.
"I ended that relationship and began a relationship with a man," Guay said.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (11/26-12/2)
30 photos Launch gallery
1. Little Legend and Puddy 😍😍😍😍
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2. "You on point Phife?" "all the time,Tip". 💥 #bannedfromnormal
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3. Vegan! The Impossible burger at Crossroads
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4. Lawrence #BeforeandAfterEpisodes 1-4: 184lbs 13% body fatEpisode 8: 196lbs 8% body fat S/O @coachdaveboxing with the works outs and @kildareriordan with the nutrition
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5. Jus haaaanngin out
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6. Meanwhile back at home in Atlanta GA someone mad they not on the 🛳. 😳
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7. No limits... Photo cred: Chris Bridges @ludacris
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8. new new
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9. Apparently my 260lbs is too much for the actual vines in the Hawaiian jungles to hold me without breaking and me falling hundreds of feet. So for safety purposes, I'm forced to swing thru #Jumanjj on wires strong enough to hold 12 adult buffaloes and 1 adult Rock. #OnSet #Jumanji #IronicallyIEatBuffaloDailyForLunch #MoreManThanNatureKnowsWhatToDoWith
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10. hey ma! 🎎#wcw 💙
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11. Surprise visit to our factories!!! #GoodAmerican #USA
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13. Peachy Keen 🔥✨⚡️
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14. If this don't look thankful I don't know what does. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. #UltraBlessed #24kMagic #SweetPotatoFly
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15. Late nights @nbcmarlon with the writers... we in here!!!
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16. There goes my baaaaaaaaabbbbyyyyy #QueenKingMagic!!! We're up to something! Ira BIG!!! Stay out our buisness -
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17. You want to win every game you play but when you come home to these faces... who cares. #ILoveYouGirls best part of my day, everyday!
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18. Steady,steady..... full size jenga.. "I got this one "???? Or do I ?
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19. Cornrows kind of day 😉@dontaysavoy2 you convinced me and I love. ❤️️
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20. #BrotherlyLove #tbt
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22. #basel #TeamLOVE @kingcombs
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23. Just introduced a special screening of @directher 's groundbreaking (must see) documentary @13thfilm with my brother @themichaelealy | @unitedblackout #blackoutblackfriday
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24. Me & Vanessa Williams giving #DuckLips #Pose on the set of #DaytimeDivas @vh1 - Coming Soon to a tv near you. Lol. - My make up done by @makeupsurgeon
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25. This picture just makes me wanna praise the Lord, you hear me!!!!!! Yes Lord brotha #TEDDYCAMPBELL What a #man !!! You are everything right on this picture husband ......... #gorgeous #stylish #classy #strong #masculine #king #sexy #debonair #gentlemenstyle And that #bible in your hand just seals the deal for me (probably cause i know that, that is what helped you become just as amazing as you look😘). While my heart and mind experiences the goodness of God at #church on Sundays, my eyes experiences the goodness of Teddy😍. Amen somebody🙌🏽. "Bless the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name" #myman #myhusband #goodman #blackman #dapperman #godlyman #goodfather #mybestfriend
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26. Yesterday was my mama's 53rd birthday!!!!! Got to celebrate with her all day. If this is what I have to look forward to I can't wait. Looking like a soft bucket a cocoa butter. Yaaaaaaaaaas! 😍😍😍 love you mommy!
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27. "Shout out to @PureAtlanta for getting the family right"....I'm loving this jogger. 😍😍
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28. This pic warms my heart ❤️ #myLogiebeans and aunt aunt umba @itowandabraxton 😘
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29. You will always be my baby😜. #HappyBirthdayReginae #mybaby18
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30. GC "Gods Child" Red on Red SweatSuit available now at www.MonicaApparel.com ... Take Your Crown wherever you go!! I'm pictured in a Medium... Go to the site now for other options ... cc: @trukernell
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