Conversion therapy, also known as “reparative therapy” or “sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE),” is a controversial and discredited practice that aims to change an individual’s sexual orientation or gender identity. Despite widespread opposition from medical and mental health organizations, conversion therapy remains a widespread and damaging practice that affects countless LGBTQ+ individuals around the world.
The effects of conversion therapy on LGBTQ+ individuals are numerous and devastating. It can cause significant harm to an individual’s mental health, leading to depression, anxiety, and even suicide. Conversion therapy is often based on the false premise that being LGBTQ+ is a mental illness or a choice, and this belief can lead to feelings of shame, self-loathing, and low self-esteem.
In addition to its negative impact on mental health, conversion therapy can also lead to the breakdown of relationships with friends and family, as well as the loss of support networks. It can be especially damaging for minors who are subjected to the practice, as it can cause significant harm to their developing identities and lead to long-term psychological trauma.
Furthermore, conversion therapy is often conducted by untrained and unqualified individuals, who may not have the necessary expertise to provide appropriate care and support. This can lead to the use of harmful and abusive practices, such as electroconvulsive therapy, chemical castration, and aversive conditioning, that have no basis in scientific evidence and are known to cause significant harm.
Despite the overwhelming evidence of the damaging effects of conversion therapy, it remains legal in many parts of the world. This is a major concern for the LGBTQ+ community, as it sends the message that being LGBTQ+ is something that needs to be fixed, and can lead to further stigmatization and discrimination.
In conclusion, conversion therapy is a harmful and discredited practice that causes significant harm to LGBTQ+ individuals. It is based on the false premise that being LGBTQ+ is a mental illness or a choice, and its use is unsupported by any scientific evidence. The effects of conversion therapy are numerous and devastating, and it is imperative that we work to end this practice and provide support and care for those who have been affected by it.