Why Are Homosexual Activists So Afraid of “Ex-Gays”?

The 19th century writer Oscar Wilde is revered by many in the gay and lesbian community but, believe me, if he were alive now, he’d be totally exasperated with the whining, hysterical malcontents who dominate today’s gay lobby.

~John McKellar of Homosexuals against Pride Extremism (HOPE).1

Homophile propagandists jealously protect a very important secret — homosexual people can leave their lifestyle.

the word secret written on paper

Why is this so important?

If it can be proved that homosexual people can “convert” to heterosexuality, then the theory that “gays are born that way” is decisively exposed as junk science.

And if the “born that way” allegation is debunked, the homosexuals lose their claim to being a protected minority under civil rights laws.

If “ex-gays” exist, this means that people can change their sexual orientation — and this means that the foundation the homosexual rights movement, the idea that they are “born that way” and thus cannot help themselves, goes right out the window. Their strongest argument simply disappears.

This is why the homosexual propagandists have to make certain that tens of thousands of “ex-gays” cease to exist. They must be “disappeared.” They must be erased from the public consciousness, like Stalin attempted to do when he airbrushed those who had fallen out of his favor from official photographs and commanded that their very names never be mentioned again under pain of death or severe punishment.

Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (P-FOX) has commented:

Many ex-gays are afraid to come out of the closet because of the harassment they will receive — their names, phone numbers and personal information posted on gay websites, attacked at ex-gay exhibit booths, press releases issued against them, etc. The tactics of gay activists are to go after anyone who comes out publicly as ex-gay, force them back into the closet, and then claim that ex-gays don’t exist because there aren’t any out in public.2

The more-or-less “official” position of the homosexual rights movement is that “there has never been a single documented case of change in sexual orientation.”3 This is an odd assertion, since a detailed review of homosexual obituaries showed several examples of men who were happily married, who had children, and who considered themselves “straight” suddenly abandoning their families and embracing the homosexual “lifestyle.”4 If “straight” people can become “gay,” why can’t the conversion process from “gay” to “straight” take place?

We might also point out that transgender activists assert that people should be able to decide what gender they are at any given time, and that gender identity is “fluid” and changeable. Why, then, do homophile activists insist that people can’t change their sexual orientation?


Scientific Experts on “Ex-Gays”

As always, politics and not truth drives the homosexual agenda. Leading experts in psychiatry and psychology have stated that there are many ex-gays now living happy and normal lives. For example, Nicholas Cummings, a former President of the American Psychological Association, has stated that he knows of hundreds of homosexuals who have successfully changed their orientation. He should know, since he and his staff have treated over 2,000 homosexual people with mental problems, many of whom desired to change their orientation.5

Psychologist doctor taking notes during psychotherapy session

Many studies have also shown that people who believe they are homosexual eventually become heterosexual. One of these was a study published in the Archives of Sexual Behavior that showed that 70% of teenagers who ever had a same-sex “romantic attraction” described themselves as later being unconditionally heterosexual.6

Unfortunately, homosexual activists simply ignore these studies and voices of experience because they do not fit the preferred narrative.

Homophile groups also make the false claim that conversion therapy causes severe and permanent harm to people. They have exactly one study performed in 2002 to back up this assertion. It claimed that 176 people suffered significant psychological harm from conversion therapy. But the “scientific” methods used in this study would make any legitimate researcher cringe; the “study” managers did not interview a large group of “ex-gays;” they simply sought out people who claimed that they had been harmed (an intensive process that took a full five years) and then condemned such therapy.7

Not surprisingly, the conclusion reached by this shoddy so-called “study” arrived at a preordained conclusion that is the opposite of the truth.  Dr. Robert Spitzer of Columbia University surveyed a wide range of ex-gays and found that 1% of the men and 4% of the women had been clinically depressed during the previous twelve months. By contrast, 43% of homosexual men and 47% of lesbians reported being clinically depressed during the previous year.8

Regardless of the half-baked rationalizations and “studies” they may possess, homosexual activists are simply afraid of ex-gays, in the same manner that ancient Greeks were afraid of the basilisk. They are terrified that, if they take an honest and unbiased look at orientation conversions, they may see something that they would rather not see.

As John McKeller of Homosexuals Opposed to Pride Extremism (HOPE) has written:

Gay activists become particularly hysterical at the mention of sexual reversion therapy. Now it may be impractical to “convert” totally from homosexuality to heterosexuality, but if counseling can allow a gay man to respond sexually to women, it should be encouraged and applauded, not lambasted or lampooned.… Come on! Is gay identity so fragile that it cannot bear the thought that some people may not want to be gay?1

couple walking at sunset


Thuggery by Homosexual Activists

As we have seen, many homosexual activists believe that they are the most privileged people on earth. They think that their own rights are paramount, and that nobody else has rights that supersede their urge to condemn, suppress and punish those who disagree with them. In nations where “conversion therapy” has been banned, homosexual activists have deliberately approached Christian counselors pretending to want to become straight, and have lied to them in order to strip them of their licenses. In England, for example, professional associations require therapists to affirm homosexuality ― even if a person wants to leave that lifestyle. As one leading English homosexual activist said, “We want to root out therapists and psychiatrists who are practicing these techniques and ultimately bring an end to them through exposing them, as well as disrupting their meetings.”

This kind of disruption is also a reality in the United States. The homosexual activist group Soulforce has blockaded and harassed people at meetings where ex-gays have gathered to tell their stories.9 Sometimes this suppression and censorship has reached into the highest levels of government; California, the District of Columbia and New Jersey have banned psychological therapy for transgender youth and others. Psychologists and counselors in these jurisdictions are forbidden to counsel homosexuals in their attempts to become straight — even if they want this counseling — but are perfectly free to tell a straight person all about the many alleged benefits of homosexuality.

Whatever happened to the doctor-patient relationship? Whatever happened to the right of people to avail themselves of certain services if they so choose? LGBTQ activists and pro-abortionists tell us that politicians should not be making medical policy, but encourage interference with the doctor-patient relationship when it suits their purposes.

In addition to simply banning conversion therapy, large and lavishly-funded homosexual activists groups are attacking on other fronts. Matt Foreman, Executive Director of the $10-million-a-year National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, grumbled:

It is morally repugnant and downright dangerous the way these extremists demonize young people and prey on the fears of parents through their so-called ex-gay programs. This report exposes the extent to which these zealots will go, including reformulating their ex-gay snake oil at the expense of vulnerable children and young adults.10


Help for Homosexual Persons

the word hope spelled with scrabble letters

Just as those addicted to drugs or alcohol can free themselves from slavery, so too can homosexuals. They can learn to control themselves and reintegrate themselves into society. This is the message of hope we must give to the homosexual people we know. We cannot just stand by and watch them wallow in their addictions, which are plainly deadly to both body and soul. Human beings are better than animals. We can control ourselves. We can rise above our animal instincts. And all of us — whether homosexual or heterosexual — must do this, for the greater good of all.


The leading organization that advocates for the constitutional rights of the individual to determine for themselves what help they need is Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (PFOX). Courage International assists Catholics who have same-sex attraction.

+ Endnotes

[1] John McKellar, Homosexuals against Pride Extremism (HOPE). Remarks of April 6, 2004. Originally downloaded from the website of Parents and Friends of Ex-Gays and Gays (P-FOX) at http://pfox.org/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=98 (no longer available).

[2] Michael Baggot. “Ex-Gays Afraid to Come Out for Fear of Persecution: ABC News Report.” LifeSite Daily News, May 7, 2008.

[3] A. Damien Martin, Institute for Protection of Lesbian and Gay Youth, quoted in Warren Bird. “New York Tax Dollars Fund a High School for Homosexuals.” Christianity Today, August 9, 1985, page 37.

[4] For more information, e-mail Brian Clowes at bclowes@hli.org and ask for Excel spreadsheet F-25-B, “Life Spans of Male and Female Homosexuals in the United States.”

[5] Kirsten Anderson. “Former APA President: I Know of ‘Hundreds’ of Homosexuals Who Changed Their Orientation.” LifeSite Daily News, June 6, 2013.

[6] Ritch C. Savin-Williams and Kara Joyner. “The Dubious Assessment of Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Adolescents of Add Health.” Archives of Sexual Behavior (2014) 43:413-422.

Also see an article on this study: Thaddeus Baklinski. “70 Percent of Teens with ‘Gay’ Attraction Later Say They are Exclusively Heterosexual: Study.” LifeSite Daily News, January 9, 2014.

[7] Pete Winn. “Homosexual Activists Launch New Attack on Ex‑Gay Movement.” CitizenLink (Focus on the Family), March 3, 2006.

[8] Ibid.  Dr. Spitzer, who had been viciously attacked by homosexuals for years, and who was suffering from Parkinson’s disease, finally gave in to the pressure and announced that he was repudiating the results of his studies in this field. However, the editors of the journals refused to pull his articles from their websites since his studies had been performed so well (Christopher H. Rosik, Ph.D. “Spitzer’s ‘Retraction’ of His Sexual Orientation Change Study: What Does It Really Mean?” LifeSite Daily News, May 31, 2012).

[9] Valerie Richardson. “Homosexual Activists Protest Episcopal Meeting in Denver.” The Washington Times, July 5, 2000.

[10] Website of the “Gay Liberation Network” at http://www.gayliberation.net/ opinion/2006/0302targetyouth.html, June 10, 2015. For more information, see the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force 2006 report entitled “March 2, 1996 Youth in the Crosshairs: The Third Wave of Ex-Gay Activism.”

Dr. Brian Clowes has been HLI’s director of research since 1995 and is one of the most accomplished and respected intellectuals in the international pro-life movement. Best known as author of the most exhaustive pro-life informational resource volume The Facts of Life, and for his Pro-Life Basic Training Course, Brian is the author of nine books and over 500 scholarly and popular articles, and has traveled to 70 countries on six continents as a pro-life speaker, educator and trainer.


  1. Virginia Weir on April 7, 2024 at 2:40 AM

    While I remain to be convinced by the science of ex-gay, nothing excuses the vitriol of the gay activists towards those who, for one reason or another, decide gay isn’t for them. I’ve been ex-lesbian since 1992. I can testify that the Lord Jesus Christ has changed my heart, enabling me to walk away from heavy alcohol and cannabis use and lesbianism. What I was unable to accomplish myself, the Holy Spirit undertook for me. I was also a diagnosed schizophrenic and depressive with OCD, taking a shedload of prescription medication and unable to work. In all of these factors, the Lord Jesus was able to heal me so that I am on a third of the medication I was taking at the height of my psychosis, and am able to think clearly. Unlike the time when I was in the scene, as we re-read say, I also have true peace, as scripture says. It was not me who did any of these things but the Lord Jesus working miraculously through me by the power of the Holy Spirit. All I did was agree to walk away from the lifestyle, and even then, it was God who granted me repentance. What he did for me, he can also do for you if you let him.

  2. AnotherbDavid on May 7, 2022 at 11:41 AM

    Thank you for this encouraging article.

  3. Maria Tereza Carvalho on May 24, 2021 at 11:29 PM

    why are you so afraid of ex-ex-gays? Why ex-gays? why not simple heterosexuals? Are your ex-gays more than cover boys? Yes, i believe people change, and people change ever. But why people must be ex-everything? Nobody is ex-straight or ex-democrat. Why people must to be ex-gay? That is ridiculous.

  4. Philip on November 15, 2020 at 7:57 AM

    Thank you Brian, what you have stated here makes perfect sense and is actually very accurate according to the people that I have prayed for. After becoming Christians, their persecutions started and then I lose contact with them. One of them used to chase the lesbians, because she was lesbian before becoming a Devoted Christian, saying, if you were born a lesbian, you need to be born again. But when I spoke to her about that, she told me that she was not born that way. But taught that way. Be encouraged.

  5. Gerard on November 14, 2020 at 9:03 PM

    I might suggest that since cannabis (marijuana) acts in the formation of affective memories, that the use of this drug in adolescence may interfere with the ability to leave homosexuality. Marijuana is not a safe drug.
    There is some pre-scientific evidence that the homosexual tendency can be blocked or reversed via male hormones in adolescence. In addition there is evidence that a tendency to homosexuality both male and female might be caused by interference with or artificial induction of the intrauterine masculinization process.
    My heart goes out to all who show heroic courage in their desire to have a sexual orientation in accord with their genetic predisposition.

  6. Rusty Writer on September 29, 2020 at 1:09 AM

    Brian, I hope you realize someday that you have been incredibly misleading, ignorant, cruel and vicious in your opinions and the way you dehumanize and demonize the minority group you do not even try to understand. Your claim that people are choosing to go from homosexual to heterosexual is contradicted by the medical associations and the evangelical ex-gay leaders; they admitted in 2013 not one ex-gay became hetero (including those who wed opposite sex spouses). Every major, decades-old ex-gay ministry from the US to Australia was closed due to total failure. You are preaching something the vast majority of people recognize is a bunch of lies.. Reach out to someone in your family or community who is LGBT. Listen and learn.

    • Noah on February 7, 2022 at 3:49 PM

      Un hombre siente más placer sexual con otro hombre que con una mujer?

    • Grace on February 26, 2022 at 8:28 PM

      You are a very disgusting, horrible person to think that people who describe themselves to be ex-gay be treated so badly with disrespect just because they no longer identify with a gay sexual orientation, but currently identify with a sexual orientation which is not gay. If those people who describe themselves to be ex-gay and are currently happy with a dating, engagement or marital relationship with an opposite-sex partner, you leave these people alone and treat them with respect, not treat them with disdain.

  7. Deborah Mills on September 11, 2020 at 3:24 PM

    Well done. Thank you

  8. David Smith on September 8, 2020 at 12:47 PM

    Thanks very much for this article.
    I’m a former Homosexual , because God himself spoke to me about my life and there was change. I’m married today with two kids for thirteen years.

    Kind regards

    David Smith

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