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The “Just as Healthy Myth”

November 5, 2011

Refuting the Distortions of the GLBTQ Activists

Distortion #3: Persons with SSA are just as healthy as persons in husband/wife marriages.

Contrary to the claims made by activists that persons with SSA are on average as psychological healthy as those without SSA (some of which reference a non-representative and poorly designed study of 30 men with SSA done in 1957),[1] numerous recent, large, well-designed studies have found that persons with are far more likely to suffer from psychological disorders.[2] depression, substance abuse problems, and suicidal ideation, than persons without SSA. The authors of these studies reached the following conclusions:

“Gay/lesbian participants reported more acute mental health symptoms than heterosexual people and their general mental health also was poorer.”[3]

“Homosexual orientation, defined as having same-sex sexual partners, is associated with a general elevation of risk for anxiety, mood, and substance use disorders and for suicidal thoughts and plans.”[4]

“Results indicate that gay-bisexual men evidence higher prevalence of depression, panic attacks, and psychological distress than heterosexual men. Lesbian-bisexual women showed greater prevalence of generalized anxiety disorder than heterosexual women. “;[5]

“The findings support the assumption that people with same-sex sexual behavior are at greater risk for psychiatric disorders.”[6]

“Gay, lesbian and bisexual men and women have high levels of mental disorder[7]

The differences are significant. In the longitudinal  study by Fergusson and associates of a birth cohort of over 1,000 children born in Christchurch New Zealand reported on data collected over a 25 year period. At age 21 the rate of major depression for persons with SSA were in this group was almost double that of persons with no SSA (71.4% to 38.2 %.). A review of the literature published in the Journal of Human Sexuality provides a complete analysis of the research.[8]

It should be noted that the rate of SSA among persons borderline personality disorder is significantly higher than in the general population.[9] However, in some cases persons with schizophrenia present with SSA, but the SSA is resolved when the schizophrenia is treated.[10]

No longer able to deny the extent of the problem, activists argue that these problems are caused by societal oppression.[11]  Were this true one would expect to find the co-morbidly to be lower in countries where acceptance and tolerance are higher, but this is not the case. Studies in Netherlands[12] and New Zealand – both noted for tolerance – have found high levels of various psychological disorders similar to those found in countries considered less tolerant.[13]

These studies do not include sexual disorders such as sexual addiction, promiscuity, compulsive masturbation, pornography addiction, gender identity disorders, paraphilias, all of which are more common among people with SSA than among the general public.[14] Were these also considered, the burden of co-morbidity would be even higher for persons with SSA.

[1] Evelyn Hooker, “The adjustment of the male overt homosexual,” Journal of Projective Techniques, 21 (1957): 18-31.

[2]  Richard Herrell et al., “A co-twin control study in adult Men: Sexual orientation and suicidality,” Archives of General Psychiatry, 56, 10 (1999): 867-874;

David Fergusson, John Horwood, Annette Beautrais, “Is sexual orientation related to mental health problems and suicidality in young people?,” Archives of General Psychiatry, 56, 10 (1999): 876-888;

Theo Sandfort et al., “Same-sex sexual behavior and psychiatric disorders: Findings from the Netherlands Mental Health Survey and Incidence Study (NEMESIS),” Archives of General Psychiatry, 58 (2001) 85-91;

Theo Sandfort et al., Sexual orientation and mental and physical health status: Findings from a Dutch population survey,” American Journal of Public Health, 96, 6 (2006): 1119-1126

R. deGraff, Theo Sandfort, M. ten Have, “Suicidality and sexual orientation: differences between men and women in a general population-based sample from the Netherlands,” Archives of Sexual Behavior, 35, 3(2006): 253-262;

Stephen Gilman et al., “Risk of psychiatric disorders among individuals reporting same-sex sexual partners in the National Comorbidity Survey,” American Journal of Public Health, 91, 6 (2001): 933-939:;

Susan Cochran, Greer Sullivan, Vickie Mays, “Prevalence of mental disorders, psychological distress, and mental health services use among lesbian, gay, and bisexual adults in the United States, Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology,  71, 1 (2003): 53-61:“

James Warner et al., “Rates and predictors of mental illness in gay men, lesbians, and bisexual men and women,”  British Journal of Psychiatry,  185 (2004); 479-485.

[3] Sandfort, (2006)

[4] Gilman, (2001)

[5] Cochran, (2003)

[6] Sandfort, (2001)

[7] Warner, (2004)

[8] James Phelan, Neil Whitehead, Philip Sutton, ”What the Research Shows: NARTH’s response to the APA Claims on Homosexuality” Journal of Human Sexuality 2009, Vol. 1.

[9] J. Parris, H. Zweig-Frank, J. Guzder, “Psychological factors associated with homosexuality in males with borderline personality disorders,” Journal of Personality Disorders, 9, 11 (1995): 56; G. Zubenko et al., “Sexual practices among patients with borderline personality disorder,” American Journal Psychiatry, 144, 6 (1987): 748-752.

[10] J. Gonsiorek, “The use of diagnostic concepts in working with gay and lesbian populations,” (in J. Gonsiorek, Homosexuality and Psychotherapy, NY:Haworth, 1982)

[11] Cochran, (2003): Barry Schreier, “Of shoes, and ships and sealing wax”; Schreier suggests that: “Perhaps instead of sexual reorientation individuals could seek religious reorientation to any number of majorU.S. religions that are affirming of people with same-sex orientation.”

[12] Sandfort, (2001)

[13] Fergusson, (1999)

[14] Alan Bell, M. Weinberg, Hammersmith, Sexual Preference: Its Development in Men and Women. (Bloomington IN: Indiana University Press, 1981); Alan Bell, M. Weinberg, Homosexualities: A Study of Diversity Among Men and Women. (NY: Simon and Schuster, 1978).

5 Comments leave one →
  1. November 5, 2011 10:27 pm

    Thanks for your research. I sometimes write on this subject, and I’m sure that you’ll prove to be a valuable resource.

  2. raski permalink
    June 20, 2012 6:26 am

    Your research will be most useful in refuting the myths on ssa about “born that way”, “safe”, “homophobia”, etc. Thank you for shining the light of truth in our dark world.

  3. August 9, 2013 8:13 pm

    Let’s see if I understand your distortion correctly: Homosexuals (who according to research are more likely to suffer some sort of psychological diagnosis) who get married should be magically made whole because they were married? Does it ever happen that way? Does it happen this way with psychologically damaged straight people? (Hint: the answer is “No.”)

    Instead, consider this: a society which prefers heterosexuality and attempts to enforce societal norming towards heterosexuality upon somone who is homosexual should produce what? Obviously the answer should be – a psychologically damaged homosexual.

    If you are truly heterosexual (which is doubtful since it has already been demonstrated that those who are uncomfortable with their underlying homosexuality refute it the most: aka the “Larry Craig” syndrome) how would you feel if you were raised in a homosexual norming society – and they insisted you should be homosexual attractive? Don’t you think you’d be psychological bent by this? (Hint: the answer is “Yes.”)

    In other words, your canard is just that: a canard. False and distortionary as the day is long. The most emminent professional institutions in the nation disagree with you: The American Medical Association (AMA) and the American Psychological Association (APA). The science is settled. Your screed above notwithstanding.

  4. August 9, 2013 8:20 pm

    And yes – moderator – the next correct move is to repent of your falsehood. “Repent.” I say this because even though I haven’t read anything other than this astonishingly evil page I know you are a Christian. Or more precisely: Mormon. They are the only ones who use the “SSA” nomenclature. Repent. Before your gay Jesus comes (Yes: gay. Not married. Hangs around with men. Wears a gown. In 1st Century Palestine. Gay) and tells you to get behind him. He doesn’t know you. He said not one word against LGBT people.

    How do I know? Because the words He spoke are in red letters in the bible. If you don’t have a red letter bible – go get one. Read it again.

    All the other words in the bible are mere conjecture on God. Paul’s writings? He never knew him. Paul had his own agenda. Paul was a homophobe and a misogynist. Compare Paul to Jesus. “Christianity” therefore has actually nothing to do with Jesus. Just with Paul’s fevered mind. I like to refer to it as “Paulanity” just to keep it clear.

    Now go. Repent.

  5. Deanna permalink
    August 29, 2013 5:40 am

    The truth is painful no doubt!

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