SIX years ago, while doing missionary work for a Northern Ireland church, filmmakerwas deeply conflicted over his sexual orientation. For as long as he could remember, homosexuality would lead to ‘eternal damnation.’
Over a period of three months he had deeply personal online conversations about his homosexuality with someone he never met. Then he accidentally attached WhatsApp exchanges with his confidant to an email sent out to 100 members of his congregation.
In a piece penned for The Independent,
It has its funny side, looking back now, but at the time it felt as if everything that I knew had imploded, and everything that I feared so dreadfully was happening. I had nobody to turn to.
The first reaction of the mission leaders was not to comfort or support me, but to immediately demand that I undergo therapy and publicly, in front of my 400 fellow missionaries, confess and repent.
I am glad that I had the strength of mind to refuse, and recognise that I didn’t need to change or ‘cure’ myself. Somehow I got myself to London, where I found people who would help me build a new life and a new community. Now nothing remains from my old life except, after two years of silence, my family.
For many, refusing conversion therapy means losing your family, faith, community, career, friends – your entire life.
While people might think that conversion therapy is consensual, or something that people willingly seek, this must be questioned when someone’s whole life is at stake. It can seem impossible to even imagine another life. You do not have free will with a loaded gun to your head.
idea that gays can rid themselves of “unwanted same-sex attractions” by signing up to “pray away the gay” programmes.
More homophobia is needed
One of Davidson’s staunch supporters is a Christian imbecile called John Allman who actually believes homophobia is A Good Thing.
This from a 2014 blog post:
I would like to promote an increase in homophobia in society.
Homophobia isn’t a bigotry or a hatred. It isn’t caused by wicked or unhealthy repression of one’s own homosexual inclinations. Rather, it is a mechanism of healthy repression of one’s own homosexual inclinations – working up a righteous fear or hatred of those inclinations in oneself and others.
That, primarily, what so-called ‘homophobia’ really is.
As such, homophobia meets a personal need of the homophobe himself. It arguably meets a social need. It often is perceived to meet a spiritual need.
In Twitter exchanges I’ve had with the grinning loon, above, he’s always claimed that conversion therapies are “a hoax.”
In the BelfastLive report local politician Eóin Tennyson said he had seen the damage done by conversion therapy after a friend was subject to “religious counselling.”
The Lagan River representative said:
Often, these practices go unnoticed by the wider population but they are very much a reality in NI. Unfortunately, a friend of mine was subjected to these practices and I saw first hand the impact it had on them and their relationships with others.
Tennyson said Health Minister Robin Swann should ban it immediately.
In his Independent piece, Hyndman wrote:
Most people are surprised that such things still happen in the UK. There is a sense of bafflement about how and why someone could get into that situation.
Although it is shocking, LGBT conversion therapy can and does still happen today. Two per cent of LGBT+ people have been through conversion therapy, and a further 5 per cent have been offered it. There is no law to stop it, and it can take many forms, from a prayer to rites of exorcism.
LGBT+ people don’t need to change who we are; these kinds of ‘therapies’ do not work and are never ‘successful’ – but they can, and do, cause lifelong harm to those who undergo them. It’s common for survivors of conversion therapy to experience mental health problems, including suicide attempts.