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Free Z - ex-gay testimonies

Testimonies are a favoured tool of the ex-gay movement. They do not require any kind of long-term result, and speak louder than statistics. Following their example, I quote from many different testimonies on this page. Some are from Finally Free (pdf), a publication of testimonies from former ex-gays who have since embraced their sexuality. Some are from ex-gays. All carry the same message:

We never really changed.

I have linked to the source of every one of these testimonies, so you can read them yourself. Some of these people are and remain religious, some are not. Some still struggle with their homosexuality, others have accepted it. All admit: we never really changed. Changing from gay to straight is something that just doesn't happen.

"I have not known anyone from either 'ex-gay' group that I participated in that changed their sexual orientation. Many people changed their behavior for a time,but almost all of them have reached the path of accepting their homosexuality."
David Fettke in Finally Free

"Finally, in the five-plus years that I was directly involved with this 'change' movement, I do not believe that I saw one genuine change or shift in sexual orientation."
Jeffry Ford in Finally Free

"Sometimes I still feel attracted to men but the thought of homosexual sex makes me feel a little nauseous. I don't see myself behaving like a homosexual anymore. I confess my temptations to God immediately, before they become sin, and I go on, resting in the Lord."
Oscar Galindo, "Free from the Bondage of Homosexuality" on the Exodus Global Alliance site.

"Where are my friends and companions from Exodus International and other 'ex-gay' groups now? Many were so unhappy about not being able to change their orientation that they committed suicide. Some lived double lives; they lived one life publicly as heterosexuals, with wives and children, active in church, seminary or Bible college; they maintained a second, secret life as closeted homosexuals."
Christopher C. Camp in Finally Free

"While I still struggle with lust sometimes when I am tired or stressed, weeks go by when I donít even think homosexual thoughts or experience temptations. I am in love with Nancy and sexually attracted to her. That is healing for me."
Tye Gamey, "The Ideal Marriage" on the Exodus Global Alliance site.

"Homosexuality is a part of my emotional, physical, and spiritual history. It will not be erased as though it never existed! [...] I periodically have sexual thoughts towards a man and sometimes towards a woman!"
Rev. John Smid, Director LIA in his testimony on the Love in Action site.

"In my opinion, having served extensive time in an 'ex-gay' program, the most change in orientation that can occur has to do only with behavior and not feelings. Even those who had claimed change in orientation for years would admit privately that same-sex attractions would still bother them and tempt them."
Catherine Wulfensmith in Finally Free

"I am frequently asked the question that unfortunately is often considered the acid test: 'Are you sexually aroused by women in general?' No, I am not. I love my wife, and we have had a wonderful and enjoyable sexual/ romantic relationship since my healing. But she is the only woman with whom I wish to have sex."
Alan Medinger, "God Healed my Marriage" on the Exodus Global Alliance site.

"It took years of painful struggle, but I have learned: You may be able to change your behavior. You might even be able to valiantly gain control over your thoughts. But you can never change who you really are."
Mark Pierpont in Finally Free

"So, whether itís facing the roots of my homosexuality or some other challenge in my spiritual walk, I know that my growth will continue for a lifetime. There will be many more battles to face in the years ahead."
Bob Davies, in his testimony on the on the Love in Action site

"I now know that 'reparative therapy' ó which purports to be able to change oneís sexual orientation from homosexual to heterosexual ó is a lie. My story is not unique. The reality is that societal prejudice and religious intolerance can drive people to take drastic actions, often with devastating consequences."
Tracey St. Pierre in Finally Free

"Of the several hundred people in 'ex-gay' ministries I have met, at conferences, groups and my own fledgling ministry, I never met anyone who had overcome his or her desire to be with people of the same sex. So many people in my groups were depressed and involved in addictive sexual behavior."
Clint Trout in Finally Free

"Sure, I am still a man who has his struggles, but with the tools Iíve learned and the experiences Iíve had, my struggles no longer consume my life."
Joe Bridges, LIA's Community Relations Director. Testimony on the Love in Action site

"After all has been said and done, I am living proof that homosexuals cannot be changed or cured."
The Rev. Jerry Stephenson in Finally Free

"I came to the harsh realization that not one of them had been changed. They were just as gay as the day they had walked in the door ó they just hated themselves more for believing they had failed God."
Scott Melťndez in Finally Free

"In the past 30 years since leaving the 'ex-gay' ministry I have seen nothing but shattered lives, depression and even suicide among those connected with the 'ex-gay' movement. [...] I challenge Christians to investigate all sides of the issue of being gay and Christian. The Church has been wrong in the past regarding moral issues and I'm sure there will be more before Christ returns."
John Evans, founder of Love in Action, in a letter to John Smid.

"Do the testimonies of so-called 'ex-gays' really impress me? No. I have personally come to realize that the mind is powerful enough to create a self-illusion of being 'cured.' 'Ex-gay' therapy offers only mind tricks and the delusion of progress. I know because I played such magic tricks with myself."
Paul Williams in Finally Free

For those who believe they offend God when they have gay sex, abstinance and celibacy can bring peace, and if Exodus and its affiliated organisations want to help people achieve that, that is fine.

But when they say they can change a person's sexual orientation, they are misrepresenting the words of their own clients.

When they say that a "practicing homosexual" cannot have a good relationship with God, they are hiding the truth.

When they say that homosexuality leads to drinking and drug use, diseases and self-destructive behaviour, they are lying.

"It was my first example that gay people can work a nine-to-five job and not go out to the bars and be totally committed to their partner. I was totally blown away. And I began to start feeling angry. And then what Wayne said to me kept coming back to my mind, and I began to think, 'I have been lied to. I cannot have been lied to all of these years.'"
Wade Richards in an article on Bay Windows: Ex-ex gay speaks out

The ex-gay movement uses half-truths and lies to draw unhappy and lonely people into their worldview, their version of the Christian faith, and their false beliefs about homosexuality. They use discredited psychological research, bogus statistics and outdated psychological theories to justify themselves. They use harmful and ineffective "therapies" to try to change something that cannot be changed.

And they damage the lives and spirits of men and women they work with.

Print advertisements recommending "reparative therapy" (July, 1998)

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