BOARD OF COUNSELING DO NOT BAN licensed professionals from providing reparative or “conversion” therapy to children.
Consider how many children and teens are influenced by peers, porn, or predatory adults into premature sexual actions. Such behavior often produces pain and confusion and a breakdown of boundaries. Surely those seeking help should not be automatically led to think to that their struggles are an inescapable part of them. It is unfair to insist that medical practitioners treat as normal inclinations which can be caused by wounds or choices which are not really free. It is also an a threat to healthy relationships to suggest that sexual identity (especially in a growing time) must be constantly indulged or analyzed.
Parents cannot be excluded from their children’s lives. Parents of children need the opportunity to personally choose the best medical assistance for their child's needs. Children in crisis and those with identity concerns need therapists who will unbiasedly examine the child’s feelings and motivations and not be automatically labeled or pushed into advocacy of same-sex attraction, transgender ideology and even surgery.
The Virginia Department of Health Professions is now categorizing standard mental health therapy as "conversion therapy." These children deserve high-quality standard mental health therapy rather than automatic affirmation. Parents will have to go out of state to find high-quality mental health therapy for their children. Please protect the rights of all the citizens of this state.