Alan Chambers + Christian Cohorts Are OK With New Psychology Guidelines. That’s Bad


Wouldn’t you know it: Some religious types posing as academics aren’t in uproar over the American Psychological Association’s new report that sexuality cannot be changed!

Dr. Warren Throckmorton, an associate professor of psychology at Pennsylvania’s Catholic Christian school Grove City College, isn’t necessarily appalled the APA has shot down reparative therapy as utter nonsense that’s got as much practical use as pet rocks: “Generally, I believe the paper to be a high quality report of the evidence regarding sexual orientation and therapy. The authors of the paper provide a very helpful discussion of the professional literature on sexual orientation change efforts (SOCE), potential benefits and harm and the role of religion and values in sexual orientation identity exploration.”

That’s not to say Dr. Throckmorton — who insists he’s not a reparative therapist, though he’s described elsewhere as supporting the practice — is jumping up and down about the APA’s declaration that, hey, Jesus might still love you if you’re a homo (okay, the report didn’t say that exactly). But he is pleased the report took a “balanced and thoughtful” approach: “There are different assumptions about what best constitutes the answer to the question: ‘who am I?’ This paper nicely addresses these assumptions and acknowledges that people who are deeply committed to a non-gay-affirming religious position may stay same-sex attracted but not identify as gay. As the paper notes, this is an acceptable alternative.”


And it’s not just Christian professors who aren’t demanding the APA’s 138-page report be burned in the town square. Alan Chambers, the head of Exodus International, which instructs wannabe ex-gays on how to become real ex-gays, has not let his spleen explode at the organization’s findings. That’s probably because the report, while denying sexuality can be changed, found middle ground where it can let therapists counsel patients away from their homosexual desires — but without going fully straight.

“The role of religion and the importance of faith cannot be understated when it comes to the ongoing dialogue over sexual and gender identity,” says Chambers. “It is an essential element of many people’s lives and creates great moral conflict and tension for those who struggle with unwanted same-sex attraction. We are grateful that the APA has acknowledged this and hope to see more done to ensure that religious diversity and personal autonomy are respected in the future.”

Well isn’t that a piece of PR-friendly jargon. But Chambers is wise not to counter the APA. His ex-gay outlet Exodus, which pairs with various faith organizations around the world to “guide” people young and old into denying their gayness for the sake of God’s love, just received a boost of support from the APA.

Chambers himself acknowledges he’s not straight, but does insist he’s no longer gay. And with the APA on board with his practice of training homos to turn their backs on their natural desires, Chambers can now point to the esteemed psychological organization’s own research and guidelines (which govern its 150,000 members) to rationalize his so-called therapy.

This is dangerous. And while we expected folks like Chambers to be able to spin the APA’s findings in their favor no matter what, that it was so effortless — and logical — is particularly alarming.

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  • Bill

    “This paper nicely addresses these assumptions and acknowledges that people who are deeply committed to a non-gay-affirming religious position may stay same-sex attracted but not identify as gay. As the paper notes, this is an acceptable alternative.”

    An acceptable alternative to who, exactly? Jesus Christ himself, or those who have fucked up his name and message to advance their own agendas?

  • Qjersey

    The APA is not immune from politics. This “position” is politically motivated to keep the conservative members happy. The “hate the sin not the sinner” strategy has been percolating for a long time now. Many ex-gay groups no longer claim to change orientation, but to change behavior.

    This is no surprise…people forget that as part of the compromise to remove homosexuality from the DSM in the early 70’s a new “disorder” was created: Ego Dystonic Homosexuality (which was removed in the 80’s).

    So the present position is nothing more than Ego Dystonic Homosexualty without a “disorder classification.”

  • terrwill

    AGAIN CAN WE PLEASE FIND A FILTHY RICH GAY PERSON WHO WILL COME TO OUR RESCUE………..And pay someone to dig really deep for the dirt on all these scumbags and publicize the hell out of it!!!……I am sure that once a half dozen or so of these hyprocritacal scumbags are exposed they will suddenly all run for cover under the rocks they deserve to cower under. I guarantee Chambers and all of his “ex gays” have “fallen to the temptation of the gay lifestle which they so very hard to avoid” Find the acts and make them answer for them……….

  • M Shane

    Sounds just like DADT. As long as you lie about it it’s ok.

  • M Shane

    It’s a different matter with Catholics! This is nothing new. Catholic theology has held right along that Any sex that is not procreative is off limits.; i.e. beating off, oral sex, homosexuality.
    Priests and monks and nuns are supposed to be celibate; meaning nothing.
    I expect that if you’re infertile you are strictly sinning if you screw. Seeing a hooker is out;I recallthe churches embarrasment when a french Cardinal had a heart attack in the den of a “working girl”. I don’t think they could get away with saying he was hearing confession,in fact, it’s a sure bet thaty they would be hapy if she’d dumped him out with the garbage.

  • Ja

    BFD, just relax Queerty.

    So what if the APA devised reasonable guidelines for those moes who want to prioritize their homophobic faith over their orientation? Self-loathing gays have every right to pursue that path if they want to. Tolerance is a two-way street. We ain’t going away but neither are the gay-disapprovers.

    In this case, better to take an eye-rolling “whatever floats your boat” approach instead of being threatened over getting your knickers in a twist and looking weak and childish. Moderate straight people (who often identify as religious) would respect that and guess what, we need their support.

    In fact, the fact that the right-wingers aren’t flipping their shit over the APA’s position (which solidly disparaged “reparative therapy”) indicates that, newsflash, we are indeed winning the culture war, inch by inch.

    Cheezus, when are we gonna stop bitching and moaning about every sign of progress we make? Attitudes like that will help us snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

  • timncguy

    Grove City College, where Dr. Throckmorton teaches, is NOT a Catholic school. It is associated with the Presbyterian Church.

  • youcanthandlethetruth

    When the board of trustees of the APA voted last December to cease classifying homosexuality as a “mental disorder,” there was dissension in the psychiatric ranks.

    The December ruling, which the National Gay Task Force called an “instant cure,” came after intense lobbying by homosexual groups and endorsement of the change by all the A.P.A.’s 68 district branches.

    Homosexuality, the board said, would henceforth be described as suffering from a “sexual-orientation disturbance.”

    New York Psychiatrist Charles Socarides, who circulated the petition demanding the referendum, calls the ruling “the medical hoax of the century.” Says Socarides: “It is flying in the face of the one fact we know, which is that male and female are programmed to mate with the opposite sex, and this is the story of 2½ billion years of evolution and any society that hopes to survive.”

    TIME magazine 1974

  • MackMike

    Does anyone else ever marvel at the fact that folks like “Youcanthandlethetruth” continually beat down gays for being too small a community, too numerically challenged to care about–placing us at about 2%, but then on the other hand credits this paltry 2% of the community with enough power to sway the APA, invade the school systems, and spread our “agenda” throughout this fine nation of ours? And, of course, the same people have to continually link to some anti-gay website, like that maintained by NARTH, to pull out some article from 1974, because one has to roll 35 years of studies and data in order to find their last great foothold in their campaign to eradicate us from society.

    Such simple minded people; they shall not feel comfortable in their lives until they reach so far back in history that they club their women and drag them around by their hair.


    @youcanthandlethetruth: You’re a virtual master of psychiatry aren’t you. Well sir, the DSM-IV definition of Narcissistic Personality Disorder fits you perfectly:
    DSM IV-TR criteria

    A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy, beginning by early adulthood and present in a variety of contexts, as indicated by five (or more) of the following:[1]

    1. Has a grandiose sense of self-importance
    2. Is preoccupied with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty or ideal love (megalomania)
    3. Believes they are “special” and can only be understood by, or should associate with, people (or institutions) who are also “special” or of high status
    4. Requires excessive admiration
    5. Has a sense of entitlement
    6. Is interpersonally exploitative
    7. Lacks empathy
    8. Is often envious of others or believes others are envious of him or her
    9. Shows arrogant, haughty behaviors or attitudes


    I prescribe the following:
    Eat shit and die.

  • schlukitz


    I second the motion. LOL

  • youcanthandlethetruth


    Wow it sounds like you are suffering from a severe case of INSECURITAS HUMONGOUS with added complications caused by HOMOSEXUAL ANGRICUS, HETERO ENVIOUS and CHRISTIOPHOBIA!


    Tadpoles es vegrandis quod volo humilitas a rectum ultra vestri appreciation quod vos sir es an asshole

  • schlukitz


    Ach du leibe Gott!

    Das vas zuch a goot diagnosis, Profezzor Schtupenagel.

    Und I dink das you zuffer frum zie olt dizeeze of dumbkupfitis, ja?

  • jarvisbearcub

    1) Grove City College is Presbyterian, not Catholic. It’s so Presbyterian, you can get a financial award for tuition for reciting the shorter catechism to the Westminster Confession of Faith from memory. And that’s Presbyterian. (or you could as of 15 years ago). Though it’s PCA (Presbyterian Church of America), which is a very conservative alternative to Presbyterian Church USA. It makes the theology behind these groups a bit different. I’m just sayin’… You can also, technically, get expelled there for consuming alcohol and getting drunk on campus. There was a greek organization there a while back that got kicked off of campus when a student rushing reported seeing a student drinking in a photo album of parties for the organization… several years prior.

    2) I’m pretty sure Alan Chambers misused the word “overestimate” in his quote. That being said, I’ve been in therapy before and therapists are VERY uncomfortable when use even use words like “right” and “wrong” any more, which I think does speak to an issue of autonomy for people in therapy. That being said……

    3) Autonomy is a liberal value. Accepting that which you can’t change and living your life under its constraints is conservative. The whole problem with the ex-gay movement is that they think being gay is something you can’t change and being a Christian is something you can, when it’s the other way around. Christianity is the practice, and gay is the orientation.

    4) @ youcanhandlethetruth… If homosexuality flies in the face of evolution, then why is homosexuality present in all cultures, Western and non, from the beginning of time until the present?

    5) Not identifying as Gay means you don’t want a political affiliation. But if you are attracted to the same sex, you are a homosexual, no matter what you actually do with your genitals. And any lifestyle you lead will be a gay lifestyle because you are gay! The Bible doesn’t just speak against homosexuality (for those who read it as non-gay affirming), it speaks against effeminancy, which is culturally conditioned and not something these groups ever address.

    6) Therapists are such fully realized liberals that they want anyone to live their life as they want to live it, even if it means a person who is gay rejecting it, so long as they are happy. It makes sense to me that they would word things this way. The issue is, though, is that person actually happy if it’s a lie?

  • jarvisbearcub

    @jarvisbearcub: Ironically, I mistyped the order of number 3. That’s what I get for typing after midnight in the comments on a blog page that no one will read.


    @jarvisbearcub: Jarvis, YCHTT will never get it; he/she it is devoid of any pleasure, alone, probably unloved. I mean seriously, he/she/it trolls queer websites and feeds of the mellifluous words of ursine lovers such as your lovely self. Go ahead, feed it, but NEVER after midnight! ?

  • youcanthandlethetruth

    @TADPOLICUS WEX: Your obsession with anal imagery is duly noted.

  • ZJ

    @youcanthandlethetruth: Well done, citing an article from 1974 as if it were the final word and ignoring any progress since then. Hey, as long as it confirms what you already believe — and really, who could expect you to update your beliefs to reflect what we’ve learned about being gay? That is, it’s evolutionarily stable, occurs throughout all cultures, and is not an indicator of poor mental health. But don’t let that get in the way of what you wish were true. Just believe harder!

  • schlukitz


    Your obsession with anal imagery is duly noted.

    Yesssss. It certainly is, given how often YOU bring the topic p.

    Shall I write you a graphic description as to how anal sex is performed so you can whack-off to it?

    or, would a pornographic fantasy story about the act be more to your liking?

  • schlukitz


    If homosexuality flies in the face of evolution, then why is homosexuality present in all cultures, Western and non, from the beginning of time until the present?</i?

    Not to mention the entire animal kingdom.

  • timncguy

    @jarvisbearcub: you must be an alum.

  • schlukitz


    Such simple minded people; they shall not feel comfortable in their lives until they reach so far back in history that they club their women and drag them around by their hair.

    You mean they’ve actually stopped doing that? LOL

  • Pop Snap


    I love banging dudes. IN THE ASS.

    Arrest me you fucking right-tard

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