CONVERSION THERAPY BANS

The vehicle for inserting‘ mandatory gender affirmation' into law in Australia is a ban against “suppressing or changing ‘gender identity’. Influential LGBQT+ lobby groups such as Equality Australia and Rainbow Health Australia have persuaded politicians that exploration of issues related to gender identity entails the same harmful practices as past conversion practices used to change sexual orientation. Here’s the rub: any so-called conversion therapy ban that includes 'gender identity' is harmful to gender non-conforming, LGB and other vulnerable young people including those affected by Rapid Onset Gender Dysphoria, autism or mental health co-morbidities.  

There are different outcomes from a ban based on ‘sexual orientation’, which we support, to one based on ‘gender identity’ which we do not.

 

The conversion therapy practices of old focused on changing sexual orientation— attempting to “cure” LGB people of their homosexual attraction and turn them into heterosexuals. Psychiatrists, psychologists, therapists, and pastoral counsellors who practiced conversion therapy employed a range of physical and psychological torture methods, including electroshock and orgasm reconditioning through aversion therapy (e.g., needles, heat, or ice). They also attempted to teach heterosexual mating behaviour or counsel conformity to sex stereotypes. These practices are now criminalised in law.

The new conversion therapy attempts to trans the gay away, focusing on the body rather than the mind. It seeks to transform LGB people’s bodies so that they resemble the opposite sex via social transitioning, medicalisation, and body modification. Thus, having changed the person’s ‘gender’, their same-sex attraction becomes ‘invisible’ to the outside world. The name for this in Australia is 'gender affirming care' or 'mandatory gender affirmation'.  

Adults, if they so choose—and if they’re informed of the consequences of medical and surgical transitioning—have every right to modify their bodies as they please. But ‘gender affirming care’ would make permanent, irreversible changes to a young person’s body when their orientation and identity is in a state of flux. This trans-promoting approach will primarily target the group that conversion bans are supposed to protect; those who are LGB. Kids likely to grow up to be gay, lesbian or bisexual (which is confirmed after puberty) are frequently ‘gender non-conforming’ and as
there’s a strong correlation between gender non-conformity and gender dysphoria, LGB kids are definitely in the firing line. Even for those kids destined to be heterosexual, it takes time, and the experience of puberty for them to work through their gender dysphoria and realise their sexual orientation.  These days, however, gender non-conforming children are labelled “trans” well prior to puberty, some even as young as toddlers, based on a belief system that holds that children have a “gender identity” which may or may not match their body. In line with this idea, a female child more likely to grow up lesbian is expected to present as a (trans) boy, and a gender non-conforming male child is expected to identify as a (trans) girl.

Once a child is identified as trans,
state education policies may require schools to follow the “gender affirming” process, which may influence children to go on to seek puberty blockers, then cross-sex hormones and sometimes surgery to alter their bodies and present socially as “straight” by assuming the appearance of the opposite sex. Furthermore, when conversion practices bans on ‘suppression of gender identity' are in place, the effect is so wide-ranging that highly therapeutic practices such as 'watchful waiting' involving holistic, compassionate, personalised care are labelled ‘conversion therapy’ or child abuse and practitioners become afraid to practise real therapy. 

Instead of a healthy future with a whole, undamaged body, children who medically transition are set on a lifetime course of pharmacological dependence and increased risk of infertility, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, thrombosis, sterility, and possible sexual dysfunction. Stripping back the pleasant-sounding language of “diversity”, this is, in fact, making LGB and other gender non-conforming young people conform to a heterosexual norm.

Mandatory gender affirmation is, in effect, homophobic. In countries such as Iran, where homosexuality is a crime punishable by death, this affirmation policy is followed through with surgical sex reassignment to rid Iran of homosexuals and other gender non-conforming individuals. In Victoria, ACT and Queensland we follow that same practice, where transition is presented as 'being your authentic self'. In reality it’s a celebration of compliance to a heterosexual norm and ironically, given the progressive tone of the conversion therapy ban, this is, in fact, a new twist on the old conversion therapy, targeting LGB kids. Conversion therapy bans that are ‘trans’ inclusive promote irreversible harm to youth. It is disingenuous for trans lobbies to piggyback off the harms done to LGB people in the past to harm LGB youth today.

 

Conforming gender non-conforming minors to the heterosexual norm

The Old
Conversion therapy based on Sexual Orientation

The New
Conversion therapy based on Gender Identity

Altering gay kid's bodies to
make them straight

Gender Conversion Camps

Social transitioning

Chemical castration, late stage endometriosis and cancer drugs used off-label as "puberty blockers"

Surgical Castration, Double Mastectomies

Cross-Sex Hormones

Skin Grafts for neo-vaginas & penises

Removal of child & family ties
Laws enforcing mandatory gender affirmation (anti-gay conversion therapy for homosexuals)

Heavy sanctions; fines and prison time for parents and physicians safeguarding children

Altering gay kid's minds to
make them straight

Gender Conversion Camps

Electroconvulsive therapy

praying the gay away' sessions

Aversive treatments using electric shock

Hormone injections

Drugs

Ritual Cleansing

Forced isolation

food deprivation

forced nudity

social sanctions,

ridicule, abuse

laws prohibiting homosexuality

prison time