Understanding The Dangers Of Conversion Therapy For The LGBTQ+

Last Update on June 8, 2022 : Published on June 9, 2022

Have you heard of conversion therapy? In the earlier days conversion therapy was been used in full blood for the LGBTQ+ community. Sadly enough, even today many countries continue to make use of gay conversion therapy to turn various sexual orientations to heterosexual.

It’s been 49 years of homosexuality being free of the label of a ‘mental illness’. It was removed from the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders in 1974 and even since the struggle to remove the stigma attached to it is on.

People who advocate conversion therapy believe that any sexual orientation or gender identity which is not being cisgender or straight or heterosexual is wrong, abnormal and needs to be converted back to heterosexuality. According to them there are only two genders (male & female) and there is only one correct way of coitus.

Let’s get a better look at conversion therapy and its effects on the LGBTQ+

What Is The Meaning Of Conversion Therapy?

Conversion therapy functions on the belief that any person exhibiting homosexual, bisexual, pansexual, etc. behavior is dealing with a mental illness and requires treatment. The treatment of course involves trying to convert various different sexually orientated people into heterosexuals.

For year now, many literates, scholars and experts have been pointing out the dangers of conversion therapy, the adverse effects conversion therapy has on the mental health of the LGBTQ+ people.

Humans just like animals have a huge spectrum of gender and sexuality which we are still exploring. Conversion therapists and advocates simply do not accept and acknowledge such scientifically proven facts about the diversity in gender identities and sexual preference & orientations.

Simply put, conversation therapy is a pseudo-psychological or spiritual therapeutic process which aims at converting people from various genders and orientation to what that call the ‘normal’ straight orientation or cisgender.

Also read: Top 3 Professional Online Counseling For LGBTQ Community

What Happens In A Gay Conversion Therapy Session?

In various surveys and studies in the past, it was found that most people belonging to the LGBTQ+ community have been undergone some kind of conversion therapy. What’s surprising is that many to them claimed to have experience conversion therapy even before they turned 18!

Gay Conversion therapy uses various atrocious and insensitive methods of convincing the LGBTQ+ people the otherwise. Let’s see what happens in a gay conversion therapy session;

  • You might do under a talk therapy which will focus on making you believe that your sexual orientation or gender identify is unnatural and morally and spiritually incorrect.
  • They might us aversion therapy to link a negative feeling with your preferred sexual though or orientation
  • They make use of hypnosis in an attempt to rewire your mind and incline it towards heterosexuality
  • An atrocious practice of corrective sexual intercourse which aims at correcting you feeling and diverting it to the ‘right’ direction
  • In some case conversion therapists have also use chemical or physical castration to reduce their sexual drives

There are various other ridiculous methods that are still being used by the gay conversion therapist in order to forcibly convert the recipient into a heterosexual being.

Also read: How To Find An LGBTQ Friendly Therapist Online?

Mental Health Effects of Conversion Therapy On The LGBTQ+ Community

If you have read this far, you can well imagine what happens with the recipient of this awful gay conversion therapy. Even the thought of some of the methods used in the conversion therapy makes me be cringe.

Most people who come out of conversion therapy suffer from intense guilt, shame, anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and what not. What’s disheartening is that even after the American psychiatric association has declared homosexuality to be normal and condemns the use of conversion therapy, many countries have still not put a ban on gay conversion therapy.

Imagine how badly it impacts the mental health of this innocent and tortured community. Let’s look at some of the effects of conversion therapy on the mental health of the LGBTQ+;

  • Conversion therapy is associated with long term negative and detrimental effects on the minds of the LGBTQ+
  • LGBTQ+ people are filled with shame and negative thoughts about their sexuality and gender identity
  • Conversion therapy can encourage non-acceptance which may lead to suicidal behavior
  • Conversion therapy can make you feel even worse because they are trying to do something that’s against the nature
  • It increases self-loathing and decreases self-esteem, self-confidence, self-worth & self-love
  • Increases the chances of developing depression and anxiety because they are made to believe the opposite of how they feel
  • It induces toxic shame and guilt

There are various other adverse mental effects of conversion therapy on the people receiving the gay conversion therapy. It depends on what method is used on them, their past experiences and to what extent they are willing/not willing to undergo conversion therapy.

Also read: Anxiety and Depression in LGBTQ People | Facts, Concerns, and Preventive Measures

That’s all Folks!

I hope this blog helps you understand the dangers of conversion therapy on the LGBTQ+ community. I hope you found this piece of information thought provoking. This pride month let’s urge people to increased their knowledge about conversation therapy and help people understand how important it is to get conversion therapy banned worldwide.

Thanks for reading.

Happy Pride!

Take care and stay safe.

About The Author

Kirti Bhati
Kirti Bhati

I am an English literature (major) and psychology (minor) graduate from St. Bede’s College, Shimla. Postgraduate in Clinical psychology from IIS University, Jaipur. She has published a Research paper on Music therapy in the military population and Workplace stress in a national seminar conducted by Fortis hospital (gurugram) and international seminar conducted by St. Bede’s College, Shimla, Respectively. Authored a dissertation work on ‘effect of social media addiction on the mental and physical well-being in adolescents’ Currently working at calm sage as a writer.

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