NARTH protest in West Palm Beach

The NARTH conference wrapped up today. A local television station covered a protest in West Palm Beach with NARTH taking the stance they are fine with people identifying as gay.


However, the conference theme was ““Preventing & Treating Sexual Identity Confusion in the Lives of Children, Adolescents, and Adults.” One talk was on encouraging heterosexuality in your child. While I am all for great parent-child relationships, there is very little evidence that same-sex attraction derives from faulty parent-child relationships. I think NARTH is also about a particular view of SSA causation in addition to helping people who believe homosexual behavior is not for them. Just say so.

6 thoughts on “NARTH protest in West Palm Beach”

  1. Thanks Warren for aswers… I am just curious about this: “there is very little evidence that same-sex attraction derives from faulty parent-child relationships”. What is that “little” evidence? What would be the method to investigate if parent-child relationships at all connected with this matter? Personal stories of parents of gays vs. personal stories of ex-gays does not count because they could lie even to themselves, retrospective memories would be affected bygay or reparative theories… Should we say faulty parenting / parent-child relationship will have no effects to any problems etc because scientifically showing X and Y is connected is just correlation not cause-efftect?

  2. Jon – On your point about trusting self-report, this is always a concern in any research like this.

    However, the answer in my view is not to trust the single report of a client and generalize it to the masses.

    In research, you need multiple levels of observation and analysis. In this case, the evidence for parenting being behind all homosexuality is very weak.

  3. Jon – Note I said very little evidence. The cases like yours if this persists past the therapy are of great interest. There may be several types of homosexuality wit bisexuals being influenced by contextual factors in ways that make it seem like orientation is changing when there is a shifting within an overall fluid personality.

    In addition, it is certainly possible that personal trauma may effect sexual desire. This however, would be at the individual level of explanation, and not generalize to the group. For homosexuals who have loving warm parents, no sexual abuse, and great peer relations with males and females, there has to be something else. So the general statement about research does not necessarily invalidate your assessment of yourself. It may make you wonder how much is due to pleasing the therapist (transference effects) but if the changes persist past the therapy very far, then perhaps there could be some relationship between these early experiences and your sexual desire.

  4. By the way: when gay activists say they don’t trust the stories of ex-gays why do we have to trust the stories of their parents when they say they had “perfect relationship” with their children? I have worked in prison and many prisoners said they had just wounderful parents and there was nothing wrong (even though they were beaten, abused etc.)…

  5. Warren said: “there is very little evidence that same-sex attraction derives from faulty parent-child relationships”

    When someone, like me, has dealt parent issues in psychotherapy and the result has been growing in heterosexual attraction and diminishing gay attraction has this all been just fake? Dealing those issue has nothing to do with change in attraction? Well… at least the result was good… even though gay activists still say I live in self-deception…

  6. Seems NARTH was trying to put a new, kinder, gentler, (non-Nicolosian) face on itself [From WPTV]:


    Dr. Julie Harren-Hamilton, president of NARTH

    “To offer opportunities for people who have unwanted homosexual attractions.”


    “For those who are content and satisfied with a homosexual identity, they are free to live that way. This is certainly not about changing people who don’t want to be changed. I think that really must be noted.”

    David Pruden

    “Well I think sometimes they may misunderstand what it is that therapists who are associated with NARTH do.”


    “Don’t feel comfortable with some of the feelings and attractions that they have. Those people have a right to seek out therapy.”


    “I think they misunderstand and think that somehow those people who feel comfortable with a gay identity are threatened by people who do not feel comfortable with a gay identity”

    Pruden did take a statement out of your playbook, Warren.


    Though that last statement is fightin’ words and demans a comeback….

    “The most healthy way for anybody to live is to be true to themselves. If you’re gay that’s who you should be. If you’re straight that’s who you should be,” said Devin Reaves, Gay-Straight Alliance President, Lynn University.

    Surely can’t disagree with someone from Lynn U!


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