Sunday, September 16, 2007

More Data on Same Sex Sexuality

Tim Stafford, senior Christanity Today staff writer reviews the Ex-Gay movement and gives some new research data on same sex orientation.

An Older, Wiser Ex-Gay Movement
The 30-year-old ministry now offers realistic hope for homosexuals.
Tim Stafford posted 9/13/2007 02:19PM

Which sums up much of ex-gay ministry today. No hype. Limited faith in techniques. No gay bashing. No detectable triumphalism, religious or political. Just serious discipleship. This may be the only group in America that realizes all the way to the bottom that when you decide to follow Jesus, you don't always get to do what you want to do.

The ex-gay movement runs against the cultural tide. Given adverse public opinion, the ambivalent support of conservative churches, and the common assertion that ex-gays condemn themselves to a life of frustration, you would think the movement would shrivel. Yet Exodus affiliates have doubled in number over the last 18 years. Many of its leaders have been in the public eye for 20 to 30 years. They show every sign of stability.

They live by radical ideas about sexuality—that we are not, as our culture would have it, defined by our desires, heterosexual or homosexual. Rather, we are defined by our Creator and Savior. Our attractions, always disordered to some extent, must be submitted to Christ, who alone can redeem us. For those who feel strong same-sex attractions, that task is especially difficult. But it is the same basic struggle every Christian must face.

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The Best Research Yet
Two psychologists show that homosexuals should not be discouraged from seeking change.
Tim Stafford posted 9/13/2007 02:20PM

Jones and Yarhouse address this lack of good evidence in their book, Ex-Gays?: A Continuing Study of Religiously Mediated Sexual Orientation Change in Exodus Participants. By taking a sample of people entering ex-gay programs under the Exodus umbrella and following them with detailed questionnaires over several years, Jones and Yarhouse tested the impact of ex-gay programs on participants—whether they actually experienced change, and whether the attempt to change caused additional distress. Participants are still being followed, but the findings to date clearly upset the professional consensus. A substantial minority of participants showed significant change from homosexual patterns of behavior and thought, and there was no overall evidence of additional mental distress. The change observed was generally modest, perhaps comparable to the results of therapy for alcohol and drug addiction, for troubled marriages, or for personality disorders.

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4 Comments:

Blogger Joel Tay said...

This is a really interesting article. Thanks for posting it up.

3:30 PM  
Anonymous jb said...

Perhaps this article might also be of interest to you. The authors examined the childhood family factors that correlated with either heterosexual of homosexual marriages using a sample of 2 million Danes.

Of interest to me is the last line of the abstract: "Our study provides population-based, prospective evidence that childhood family experiences are important determinants of heterosexual and homosexual marriage decisions in adulthood."

7:20 AM  
Blogger Alex Tang said...

hi Joey Tay,

welcome. Yes, this is interesting. It throws more light on same sex sexuality without all the hype. I am glad you like it.

6:53 PM  
Blogger Alex Tang said...

hi jb,

Thanks for referring me to that article. I am interested in what you think about their research methodology.

THe last line of the abstract highlights the importance of childhood and family influences in marriage decisions in adulthood. Again it always come back to that, doesn't it?

6:56 PM  

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