It is said that fools rush in where angels fear to tread so pardon my folly. In fact it may be worse, I may be about to take my life into my own hands but then I believe in resurrection.
Reparative therapy (behavior change) for homosexuals is seen by many therapists, gay and straight alike, as ‘clinical crap’ (my obnoxious words not theirs) because it not only does not work but, for many if not most or all, it cannot work. The confessions and apologies of Alan Chambers former head of the now closed Exodus International (a ministry for persons with unwanted same-sex attractions and activity) seem to corroborate this view. But this raises some awkward questions for Psychiatry and related disciplines.
What is it about homosexuality that makes it so resistant to psychotherapy and clinical behavior modification interventions? I gather from friends in the field of Psychology that behaviours that are usually associated with personality disorders are often difficult to treat and so are behaviours resulting from bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Psychiatrists should do us the favour of explaining why it is clinically pointless to attempt behaviour change even in a person who does not want to continue in a same-sex liaison.
Is it because this relates to sexual intercourse? Might it also then be clinically pointless to attempt behavior change in any person who desires to give up fornication, adultery, bestiality, incest or any other sexual attraction and practice? We need to know, help us please.
What then is the future of the now popular reparative justice programmes where behavior change is emphasized over and even replaces imprisonment? Money well-spent or wasted on a futile venture? Just asking.
Then, since I have already put my life in my hand indulge me a bit further. Neurosurgeons treat brain-related maladies. What exactly do Psychiatrists and Psychologists treat within humans since the psyche (whether, soul, self or mind) is immaterial and invisible? Just asking especially of those who are hard-nosed materialists and/or atheists.
Is my problem too much time as an unemployed person or have I fallen in love with a coffin?
Ender: The Rev. Dr. Chisholm is an ordained Jamaican Baptist Clergyman and lecturer. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
Gleaner and Observer