Therapy and Sexual Orientation

I’ve helped people enhance their lives through an exploration of the underlying emotional drives that form the basis of many fears, phobias, inhibitions and neuroses. Occasionally, I’m presented with a new challenge. I’ve had men in their twenties approach me insisting that they want to rid themselves of homosexual thoughts or impulses. None of these young men confessed to being actively gay, but were adamant they didn’t want to be gay or have homosexual thoughts or impulses.
This situation presents a dilemma for the therapist. There are those therapists that adhere to the view that sexual orientation is a latent disposition from birth with possibly a genetic basis. In other words, people are born homosexual. There is another view that homosexuality is merely a misguided affectation with no genetic basis whatsoever and that resolving misguided ideas, all people can return to the natural state of heterosexuality.

In trying to understand these unhappy but earnest young men, I’ve always uncovered a high degree of guilt and apprehension about sex and sexuality in general. My approach as a therapist has been to explore the reasons for the feelings of guilt rather than trying to obliterate an impulse. Depth therapy or depth hypnotherapy has been effective in helping a person take a measured appraisal of their sexual impulses. Usually, I encountered a heterosexual who was terrified of their own healthy impulses and inclinations with an abject terror of the remotest possibility of being gay. I’ve also had clients who were gay, who could, after therapy, make appropriate decisions without guilt or shame.