Discussions of Mormons and Mormon life, Book of Mormon issues and evidences, and other Latter-day Saint (LDS) topics.

Monday, October 18, 2004

"I Do Exist": Ending the Silence about Ex-gays

I recently purchased the DVD, "I Do Exist" by Dr. Warren Throckmorton. This documentary helps end the oppressive silence about ex-gays, showing that they do exist, and that at least for some, change is possible. Sadly, the homosexual community has been so strident in insisting that change is impossible, that many people have been convinced that they must be permanently gay based on a struggle with same-sex attraction or past same-sex experiences. Schools and corporations teach their people that change is impossible, and those who want to change are directly or indirectly pressured to abandon the "impossible" effort. Meanwhile, genuine ex-gays are sometimes treated as if they did not exist, or even treated with hostility by some vocal advocates of "tolerance" and "diversity" who apparently cannot handle the existence of people who don't fit their paradigms of how the world should be.

The possibility that gays can change is not a message of hate for gays, but a message of hope for those who do not want to be gay, including some men who struggle with same-sex attraction but wish to be faithful to a wife, or some who wish to participate in a true marriage between a man and a woman. Some other helpful resources include PeopleCanChange.com (I've corresponded with the author of that site and am impressed with his work and his personal witness that change is possible). I also value the work of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH.com) (see, for example, the story about Dr. Robert Spitzer's research results on the possibility of change - a significant story given Dr. Spitzer's pivotal role in supporting the gay agenda in the past).

Even some who feel they were born gay and felt same-sex attraction at an early age have found that change is possible, and desirable. I believe this message of hope needs to be shared with others. People struggling with same-sex attraction need not be resigned to a permanent gay identity. Change is possible in our sexual attitudes, in our sexual behavior, and in many other aspects of our lives. That's not to say it is easy, but with faith in God and support from others (instead of condemnation and denial of all hope), many people may have a fighting chance at breaking away from chains they wish to cast off.

I pray that we can be more supportive of those who dare to come out in a different way -- out from homosexuality.