Practical Exercises for Men in Recovery of Same-Sex Attraction (SSA) Paperback – 15 Mar 2011
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About the Author
James E. Phelan received his doctorate degree in Psychology (Psy.D) from the Southern California University for Professional Studies and his master's degree in Social Work (MSW) from Marywood University. Jim is a Board Certified Diplomate in Clinical Social Work (BCD) and Internationally Certified Alcohol & Drug Counselor (ICADC). He is a Psychotherapist Associate to the American Psychoanalytic Association, Mental Helath Affiliate to the National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis, and Scientific Advisory Member to the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH).
Top Customer Reviews
Edited having spoken with people who have used the workbook to a five star review. Yes, this book will not be for everybody (especially those like Dr Jessen who want to ridicule change but not attempt it) but for those who cannot find a professional therapist who is willing to work with them this book is a superb tool to get started with as it is based, unlike Gay Affirmative Therapy, on sound and tested psychological principles which have been shown - aside from the biased writings of the pro-gay lobby via APA section 44 and others - to be safe and effective (according to research published in peer reviewed journals and accepted by the wider APA membership).
Do not let comments about bigotry and "internalised homophobia" put you off. No professional mental health body recognises internalised homophobia as a condition or concept and, as research keeps showing, it is not society that causes mental health problems amongst the homosexuality community ([...]). Change is possible and this may be the tool to help you if you want to.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The "Practical Exercises" in this book include keeping a masturbation diary, drawing pictures of your "gay self" and your "straight self," and repeated suggestions that what they refer to as "Same-Sex Attractions" are created by a father who was distant and uncaring toward you, as well as a mother who was too close and protective (the opposite for women, of course). None of this has been taken seriously by psychologists or other mental health professionals for over a century.
Also troubling is the persistent religious theme found throughout the book; reputable psychotherapists leave their own religious and/or spiritual beliefs on the other side of their office door, allowing the client to decide whether such beliefs are relevant to her or his progress. The weaving of spirituality in this tome leaves one with the distinct impression that it's contents are only an extension of the "pray the gay away" tactics used by earlier groups in the 1970s.
Buy this only USED, and only as an archival example of what can go wrong when ideology supplants science in the struggle to deal with a society becoming more and more open to diversity in sex and sexual orientation.
Exercise 27: keep a masturbation diary.
Exercise 56: write a good bye letter to your same-sex attraction.
Exercise 58: draw yourself as a gay person, then as a straight person.
While I do understand that there are plenty of people who, due to ignorance and religious brainwashing, believe that one's sexual orientation can be changed, I must admit being puzzled that anyone could thing these silly exercises could help.
Bottom line, no matter what you call it, "recovery of same-sex attraction," "ex-gay therapy," this is all utter nonsense that is denounced by the entire mental health profession as being not only useless, but also very dangerous and damaging to people.
Even the founders of "Exodus International," the leading "ex-gay" organization, came out and denounced their practices as worthless and nefarious (although they haven't returned the massive amounts of money they collected from their victims)
This book would be funny if it weren't such an absolute disgrace and wasn't one of the tools used by bigots to inflict pain and misery on gullible, trusting people. Avoid at all costs.