“I felt like I was taking a personal integrity course. That’s how I was sold.”
Dean Fudge underwent so-called conversion therapy by a religious group for several years before offering it to others.
“I tried in those 15 years to change my sexuality. I was taught it was the right thing to do, I was married and my wife knew I was gay. We were both told that God would intervene, but it didn’t. . “
At that point Dean was seen as a “success story” by the group, which he still practices, because he was married to a woman and had followed the program several times.
He went on to lecture around the world on how a person’s education could affect their sexuality. Although he knew deep down that he was still gay, he believed that conversion therapy worked for others.
“I thought it was my problem that it didn’t work. It was all about becoming a better person, becoming a better Christian.
“When I talked about my story I wasn’t entirely honest and said ‘the gay part doesn’t go away, you know.’ I taught the Freudian approach to cod that you can blame all your problems on your mother and yours. father without educational qualifications. “
- What is Conversion Therapy?
- The head of the Anglican church condemns Ghana’s anti-gay bill
Dean hasn’t been out until his late 40s and says he suffers from post-traumatic stress triggered by the “personal integrity course”, which included “exorcisms” to free him from demons.
“There is a lot of guilt and shame about queer people in conversion therapy groups, they are told it should work. I was told that I would be freed from the demon of homosexuality,” he says.
A six-week public consultation opens on Friday on how best to end conversion therapy, described by health agencies as an attempt to change or suppress someone’s sexual orientation or gender identity.
This generally involves trying to stop or suppress someone from being gay or from living as a sex other than their registered sex at birth.
Estimated survey from 2018 5% of LGBT people were offered conversion therapy, and 2% experienced it.
A ban was first proposed in the same year and the new proposals include stronger legislation for England and Wales, including the creation of a new criminal offense.
The Minister for Women and Equal Opportunities, Liz Truss, said: “There should be no room for the repugnant practice of coercive conversion therapy in our society.”
Dean says that while he would “definitely be in favor of an outright ban,” he still welcomes the idea of stricter laws.
“It will give someone who is experiencing conversion therapy a way of saying this is against the law and I will take action – I think it will be a deterrent.”
The anti-abuse charity Galop has launched a national helpline for anyone who may be traumatized by reliving their experiences.
“The ban on conversion therapy is a step forward for our community, but we know that the spotlight it gives to these practices can cause pain and trauma to those who are experiencing these abuses right now or have suffered in the past,” the chief executive Leni Morris said.
The government says it wants to safeguard true therapists and religious freedom by protecting people from harm and hopes that conversion therapy survivors and LGBT, religious and medical groups will participate in the consultation.
For physical violence, such as rape and assault, conversion therapy will be considered an aggravating circumstance during the sentence.
But the consultation notes that victims testify that conversion therapy is often nonviolent and may include “casual conversations, exchanges of views, private prayers or pure speech acts.”
In this context, the government states that it also intends to criminalize the administration of “speech therapy” to minors under the age of 18 or unwilling adults.
Consenting adults may still seek this verbal therapy, but “robust and rigorous” measures will be in place, including requiring them to be informed of its potential impact.
The consultation also adds that psychologists, counselors and other doctors and health professionals should not be prevented from “providing legitimate support to those who may be wondering if they are LGBT”.
Former equality counselor Jayne Ozanne, who fights against conversion therapy, said she welcomed the launch of the consultation, but is “deeply concerned about the loophole it creates by allowing adults to consent to these practices. harmful and degrading “.
“The consultation paper makes little mention of the harm religious practices are known to cause, nor does it acknowledge that government research itself has shown that these make up the majority of such practices in the UK – instead it focuses on ‘verbal therapies’. in clinical settings, “he says.
The government says that “daily religious practice” will not be affected by the proposals and that, for example, “an adult who wants to be supported to be celibate will be free to do so”.
The Evangelical Alliance, which claims to represent 3,500 churches, said it welcomed the idea that the consultation “would safeguard spiritual support for those who so desire.”
“Our concern is that some activists are pushing for daily Christian practices such as prayer and pastoral care to be criminalized, and therefore the Evangelical Alliance will encourage its members to respond to this consultation,” said UK director Peter Lynas .
The consultation also contains a number of other suggested measures, including:
- Conversion Therapy Protection Orders
- Restricting the promotion of conversion therapy, including online
- Removal of profit streams from perpetrators
- Make it easier to disqualify an author from holding a senior role in a charity
Read More about Politics News here.
This Article is Sourced from BBC News. You can check the original article here: Source