Thursday, March 26, 2015

Repairative Therapy doesn't repair anything

I was asked recently to write a 500 word article on my experience with both receiving and giving this kind of therapy over my life. Hopefully it will reach others that feel this is an "Answer" and can once again   demonstrate the harm done not only to adults but to the youth of our nation.

Darlene Bogle:  Former Director of Paraklete Ministries-an Exodus Referal group

Long before I knew someone wanted to repair me, I was just a happy go lucky tom-boy. My days were spent climbing trees and fighting with my brother over who would wear his jeans! I had special girlfriends that I followed around like a puppy, and idolized them.

Then, I went off to a Christian college in the early sixties, and fell in love with Linda. Our bond was spiritual, emotional and sexual. With the religious judgments, Linda ended her life and I was forced into “counseling” to correct the errors of our ways.

Thus began the 30 year journey through therapy, multiple deliverance sessions to cast out the demons that drove me to perversions of homosexuality, and multiple hours of healing the inner child which had been damaged back to the darkness of my time in the womb .If I wasn’t broken before all of the efforts to fix me, I was left with the shameful realization that nothing could make me better. Hours of prayer, Scripture memorization, and purging my mind of temptations and friends who were toxic to me, left me living a lie!

Nothing had changed. So, why, you ask did I go into ministry and lead an ex-gay group to “fix” other people and set them free from their demons? I thought something was wrong with me, and perhaps I could do the impossible and help someone else to change who they were.

Before “reparative therapy” had a name, it was still destructive to the hearts of men and women who were told they were not “ good enough.”

"My heart was in the right place, but my message was not. In recent years I have seen the resulting damage from rejection, shame, and conditional love. I apologize for my part in presenting a God of conditional love, and ask forgiveness for the message of broken truth I spoke on behalf of Exodus. 

My heart breaks as I continue to hear stories of abuse and suicide from men and women who couldn’t change their orientation, through reparative therapy. One of our female attendees became so depressed over her inability to change that she jumped off a bridge rather than continue the struggle. I was told it wasn’t my fault, but my heart knew better."

My passion  is to bring healing to those, like me who were subject to such therapy.  I encourage them to speak out; stand up and call reparative therapy for what it is; shaming, destructive to the mind and spirit, and damning to the soul.

I have been on my road to recovery for over thirty years; however my memories are filled with those who we lost along the way, Gay, Lesbian, Transgendered to name just a few. This has to stop, and especially for the youth in these categories.

My single voice joins with hundreds across this land…It is enough. Ban the message of false hope of change, or even the need to change. I stand with them in a unified proclamation. This doesn’t work.

This MUST stop===Now!

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