"Ex-Gays" | Health | News

Dr. Oz Says He Sees The Light On 'Ex-Gay' Therapy

DrOzReparativeTelevision doctor Dr. Oz's show yesterday to explore so-called reparative therapy, the harmful and distorted "therapy" that claims to cure people of same-sex desires.

As most of us already know, this is junk science that deserves less-than-zero credence, which is why GLAAD, GLSEN and PFLAG joined forces to deride Oz's decision.

"Producers of the Dr. Oz Show framed their program on so-called reparative therapy in a way that provided a lengthy platform for junk science," they said. "Although the show also featured guests who condemned the idea and practice of “reparative therapy,” Dr. Oz himself never weighed in, and the audience was misled to believe that there are actual experts on both sides of this issue. There are not."

Dr. Oz was apparently persuaded to their side, because on his website he wrote that he "agrees with the established medical consensus."

His post, via JMG:

Some guests argued that they have been changed thru these treatments, but I was overwhelmed by the pain of individuals hurt by the experience.  After listening to both sides of the issue and after reviewing the available medical data, I agree with the established medical consensus.  I have not found enough published data supporting positive results with gay reparative therapy and I have concerns about the potentially dangerous effects when the therapy fails, especially when minors are forced into treatments.

My biggest epiphany occurred after hearing where the opposing groups found some common ground. The guests who appeared on my show on either side of this debate agreed that entering into any therapy with guilt and self-hate is a major error. Trying to change who you are instead of loving who you are leads to broken spirits and broken hearts.

Encouraging self-acceptance is the only way to help alleviate the shame experienced by those who are struggling with their sexuality – and help them reach a place where who they are matches who they want to be.

Okay, great. So, moving forward, instead of calling this "reparative therapy," perhaps we can call it manipulative, repressive hocus-pocus?

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  1. Who listens to that guy anyway? He and Dr. Phil are deservedly fading into obscurity.

    Posted by: Jack M | Nov 29, 2012 7:54:29 AM

  2. Dr Oz is a surgeon. Perhaps he should stay away from areas where he isn't trained or competent (mental health)and stick to what he knows. This sort of behavior from him is damaging, especially to kids and their parents who simply don't know better.

    Posted by: Bob | Nov 29, 2012 8:28:24 AM

  3. ..."instead of calling this "reparative therapy," perhaps we can call it manipulative, repressive hocus-pocus?

    How about we also congratulate a popular-with-the-masses show, on daytime Network TV no less, for having the guts to honestly ADDRESS the situation.

    You do understand that Fox "News" viewers watch the Dr. Oz show daily? And the way that particular subject was brought forward, in my POV, was carefully planned and presented in a way to keep everyone's attention, ON BOTH SIDES, without turning them off the topic. Viewers watched this until the end, and those who accept Fox "News" falsified representation on all things LGBT had NO CHOICE but to question the moral value of said "therapy", and to start thinking with their human hearts instead of their ideological and theocracy bullcrap-pushed minds.

    It is a FIRST step in the right direction. Bravo to Dr. Oz for knowing his audience, and understanding how to drive the message home. Now on to the next step, Ms. Oprah Winfrey.

    Posted by: Maguita | Nov 29, 2012 8:33:15 AM

  4. he didn't learn anything on this sham he could have learned before airing his show and giving those hucksters a legitimate platform. Shame on him for not doing his homework before hand.

    Posted by: ben | Nov 29, 2012 8:37:15 AM

  5. Can you employ a copy editor? The first three paragraphs of this post make so sense.

    Posted by: Dave | Nov 29, 2012 8:38:20 AM

  6. I never did like this guy, and now I REALLY don't.

    Posted by: Awful | Nov 29, 2012 8:46:01 AM

  7. You can't deride Dr. Oz; the nation loves him, even if he's not on your radar.

    He's handsome, competent, and he 'goes there' with all the awkward topics people want to avoid. He is no Dr. Phil; not by a long shot.

    I emphatically agree that the term "Reparative Therapy" should never be used. Call it what it is so that these 'experts' are always shone in the correct light.

    Posted by: Pete N SFO | Nov 29, 2012 9:19:09 AM

  8. Maybe I'm reading it wrong, but to me it sounds like the consensus that he agrees with is that RT is crap.

    Perhaps he should have clarified what the "established medical consensus" is, so as to avoid any confusion. But the established medical consensus IS that "reparative therapy" is junk. I mean look at the other things he says in the statement:

    "Trying to change who you are instead of loving who you are leads to broken spirits and broken hearts.

    Encouraging self-acceptance is the only way to help alleviate the shame experienced by those who are struggling with their sexuality – and help them reach a place where who they are matches who they want to be."

    *shrugs* towleroad should contact the show for clarification on the statement, that way we know for sure.

    Posted by: Jonathan | Nov 29, 2012 9:27:05 AM

  9. Joe...I agree that is annoying when bloggers don't proffread, but do we have a right to complain about something we didn't pay for? This website is free and the author is under no obligation to provide a certain level of quality.

    Posted by: Joe | Nov 29, 2012 9:41:45 AM

  10. @Dave - I concur; a copy editor is much needed. I volunteer to proof as I am already involved with two other gigs P/T to help build up my blogging resume. Towleroad, get at me! @stephen_victor

    Posted by: Stephen | Nov 29, 2012 9:50:35 AM

  11. A perfectly competent heart surgeon has found out how much more money he could make on tv. All he has to do is let the producers find some topic and come in and read his lines. Oh, and of course wear his scrubs.

    Nice gig if you can get it.

    Posted by: disappointed in the doctor | Nov 29, 2012 9:57:13 AM

  12. The show did make it seem like there was an argument for both sides and since I'm not sure how many of his viewer's do web follow-ups, I'm adding this (and Joel Osteen) to my reasons to loathe Oprah.

    Posted by: John | Nov 29, 2012 9:57:26 AM

  13. Boo, wrong reason dude! I hate that people bash gay conversion torture on the grounds of pain. Normally that is a cool thing to do, but conversions have been given too much legitimacy by way of the TV.

    That legitimacy needs to be undermined. We know its crap but to people who think it's true we need human garbage like Dr. Oz to in no uncertain terms, RIP IT APART.

    Even if they write Dr. Oz off they wont be able to recover the loss of confidence that comes with someone rejecting the theory outright, in public. It undermines the thought.

    Posted by: Fenrox | Nov 29, 2012 10:10:23 AM

  14. Give a platform to utter quackery unchallenged on the air and then object to it on his blog that no one reads anyway- why not just write a note on his bathroom mirror in lipstick?

    Posted by: Jeff | Nov 29, 2012 10:17:00 AM

  15. @Dave, Thank God, I thought it was just me.

    Posted by: Chaszle | Nov 29, 2012 10:29:08 AM

  16. The problem is the media's False Equivalency bullsh*t.

    "EVERY major medical and psychological association and peer-reviewed journal in the US says this is complete bunk, but here to give us a different perspective is Reverend Fullashit from the Toothless Baptist Church and fried chicken emporium."

    Posted by: Caliban | Nov 29, 2012 10:44:02 AM

  17. Bashing the gay away is neither reparative or therapy. Dr. Oz works for New York Presbyterian Hospital and this gay bashing propaganda violated their required code of conduct http://nyp.org/MungoBlobs/439/433/code-of-conduct.pdf

    Dr. Oz works with gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender & transsexual patients, doctors, staff and students. NY Presbyterian Hospital has a nondiscriminatory employment policy. The hospital requires all staff to "not engage in any activity, practice or act that creates an actual or apparent conflict with the interests of the Hospital."

    By promoting bash the gay away as credible in any way, Dr. Oz violated his contractual agreement with NY Presbyterian. He also sent a clear message to LGBTI patients, colleagues and students what he thinks about them -- that they have chosen their sexual orientation and can change if they try.

    Maybe Andy could call Dr. Oz's boss and ask him if he thinks Dr.Oz violated the hospital policies Dr. Craig Smith 212-305-8312

    Posted by: Jessica Naomi | Nov 29, 2012 10:53:10 AM

  18. Could the writes/editors perhaps add a verb to the first sentence?

    "Television doctor Dr. Oz's show yesterday to explore so-called reparative therapy, the harmful and distorted "therapy" that claims to cure people of same-sex desires."

    Posted by: sfjerry | Nov 29, 2012 11:30:59 AM

  19. Repair something that ai'nt broke? Weird

    Posted by: Stephen | Nov 29, 2012 11:38:37 AM

  20. OK, so I saw several clips of the show Dr. Oz did. To say I'm not impressed is an understatement. He gave legitimacy to NARTH, and he gave legitimacy to ex-gay therapy. He gave legitimacy to the idea that all gay people are unhappy and damaged. After the first couple of minutes, it was clear that this show was set up with the intent to get ratings and create talking points.

    Dr. Oz said he didn't know anything about ex-gay therapy before the show. The question then must be raised-----WHY did he raise this question and create this segment on his show if he has no input? The reason is because he wanted to use us for ratings. I am pissed he NOT ONCE challenged the ex-gays and he never discredited them at all. It is really appalling. It is really appalling because a struggling teen will see the so-called ex-gay man up there on stage and believe that they could be him. Less-informed individuals could watch that man and think others can become straight if they are born gay.

    The positive I will say is, the pro-gay side was much more concise, much more factual, stressed acceptance and love unlike the ex-gay promoters, and our voices outnumbered the ex-gay defenders. So I don't think many people could come from watching that show without siding with us. But still, the constant questioning and debating of homosexuality, and the subtle message being gay is "not normal" and that it's OK to not accept people as gay is so harmful to us. Boycotting Dr. Oz's show forever.

    Posted by: Francis | Nov 29, 2012 12:09:09 PM

  21. The nation does not love Dr. Oz. Most don't know who he is, and many that do know him feel the same way I do--that he is a money-grubbing fame whore and a huckster. Any surgeon who promotes faith healing is not someone who should be taken seriously. Oz is only interested in his own celebrity, and he preys upon his audience's ignorance. You're right. He's no Dr. Phil. He's worse.

    Posted by: shawnthesheep | Nov 29, 2012 1:48:29 PM

  22. Can we scream Hypocrisy!!! Where was the outrage when Maggie Gallagher, of NOM, and other anti-gay guests (Member of "Kill the Gays" Preachers church) appeared on Anderson Cooper's 360 -- making completely erroneous homophobic statements?

    Hasn't he given a platform to a fringe organization(s) promoting dangerous and harmful practices, i.e., killing gay people? Did he do it for "ratings" because what other reason could there have been? Yet, AC gets a "pass" and Dr. OZ does not. Either they both should be condemn or neither.

    Posted by: Belthazar | Nov 29, 2012 2:01:42 PM

  23. Dr. Oz is a quack. The last time I heard anything about hims was the apple juice scare. After that, I decided to do my best avoid his show.

    Posted by: Robert | Nov 29, 2012 5:32:47 PM

  24. If the Gay community lets him get away with this, it will happen again and again.

    Columbia should dump him.

    Posted by: Margie | Nov 29, 2012 6:47:23 PM

  25. The gay community has to protest his show now!!!!

    Posted by: Alan Brickman | Nov 29, 2012 8:47:30 PM

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