Virginia Regulatory Town Hall
Department of Health Professions
Board of Counseling
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4/11/19  3:02 pm
Commenter: Keith Arthurs

Sexual orientation is not persistent in children, they should be able to receive therapy

According to "Adolescent Sexual Orientation: Surprising amounts of change", they state:

"The idea that adolescent same-sex attraction will always become adult same sex attraction is quite incorrect."

They go on to say, "That is, 16 year olds saying they have an SSA or Bi-orientation are 25times more likely to change towards heterosexuality at the age of 17 than those with a heterosexual orientation are likely to change towards bi-sexuality or homosexuality. "

The notion that you are born that way, that sexual orientation is persistent goes against the scientific reality.  Kids experiencing issues with their sexual orientation, discomfort, or a desire to receive therapy for it should have that option. 

Further, a person who converts to a religion, such as Christianity or Islam, who is homosexual, should have therapy available that will help them become heterosexual if they choose to have that therapy.  While many studies show it is difficult to change behavior/habits once formed, it is possible and has been done for many people.  The option for someone to have therapy to help them with this should remain available for people who want such therapy.  Other difficult to change behaviors, such as eating disorders, have such therapy available.  Such therapy options needs to be available to persons who want it, or need it.

Children especially, as they go through puberty and have the normal preteen-teenage discomforts with their sex and attractions, should especially have therapy available.  Kids are much more likely to go through radical changes, and are much more susceptible to changing. 

Again, from the above paper, "There will be those who are Bisexual or SSA at age 16 who retain that attraction pattern unchanged the rest of their lives, but from the survey data we would have to say that this is very unusual. " 

Sexual orientation is not permanent in children, in fact, they are more likely to change to become heterosexual through puberty, than to change and become homosexual.  Studies prove this.   If someone wants therapy to help them with their sexual orientation, especially children, it should be available to them.

Thank you,

Keith Arthurs

CommentID: 71210