Friday, July 22, 2011

Ex-Gay Cliches

These two mostly come off as a bit disjointed and unhinged. It may simply be the editing or lack of time, but they were all over the place. I would like to look at the typical Ex-Gay cliches he uses though (which rarely apply to most gay men) and compare them to the homosexual I know best, myself:

"My father sucked" - personally I happen to have been very close with my father and resent those who led him to believe he'd failed me somehow;

"I was an addict" - I never touched drugs and alcohol until after I had been pushed out of my church and faith because of my sexuality, and even then I never engaged in any substance abuse that wasn't normative for my circle of friends and most others at Indiana University, where I was studying at the time;

"I was a slut" - I've never been particularly promiscuous, and frankly my straight friends in college were far more promiscuous then myself;

"I was molested" - While I actually can relate to this bit of his testimony, my experience came after I had realized I was attracted to other boys and my inhibition in stopping or reporting the abuse stemmed from the shame I felt because of those attractions. Essentially I knew I was gay, and thought that the abuse was God's way of punishing me for having been attracted to and 'experimented' with other boys before;

"I was a sissy" - While I may have had some stereotypical gay traits (I like musicals and a good tear wrenching drama), I was mostly your typical boy. I loved video games and movies, the more violent the better, played army with my friends and spent most of my time stomping around outside in the woods.

And unfortunately Joy Behar doesn't ask the most important question: Are you still attracted to men? Has this man actually changed his sexual orientation, or has he, like most ex-gays, changed his behavior and identity? These are two fundamentally different things and are incredibly important in the on-going ex-gay debate, as well as the wider debate surrounding homosexuality in society.

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