Origin and Healing of Homosexual Attractions and Behaviors
In my clinical experience over the past twenty years I have witnessed the resolution of the emotional pain which caused homosexual temptations and behavior in several hundred males and females. Their process of healing occurred, first, through insight-oriented psychotherapy to identify the origins of their conflicts and then through the use of forgiveness and Catholic spirituality.
At the present time most Catholics have little to no understanding of the emotional causes of homosexual attractions and behavior nor of the powerful role that Catholic spirituality can play in the healing of this disorder. The reasons for this state of ignorance are numerous and include the scant literature available on the value of the Catholic Faith and the sacraments in the resolution of homosexual attractions and acts; failure of traditional therapy to resolve homosexual behavior; views within the media and educational, social service, health and political fields. In addition, there are many factions within the Church herself that are opposed to and are attempting to undermine traditional Catholic moral doctrine on this issue.
The failure to understand the actual causes of homosexuality impacts those who counsel teenagers and adults with this disorder. Therapists regularly tell those seeking help that the Church's teaching on homosexuality is insensitive to homosexuals, unscientific, and erroneous. They are advised to accept themselves as being created homosexual by God. Unfortunately, those giving such counsel usually have little awareness of the emotional conflicts leading to homosexual attractions nor of the healing power available with forgiveness and the Catholic spirituality.
In my clinical experience over the past twenty years I have witnessed the resolution of the emotional pain which caused homosexual temptations and behavior in several hundred males and females. Their process of healing occurred, first, through insight-oriented psychotherapy to identify the origins of their conflicts and then through the use of forgiveness and Catholic spirituality. Such a treatment approach is similar in ways to the employment of spirituality in the treatment of substance abuse disorders. In fact, major breakthroughs were made in the management of addictive disorders only after a reliance on God was made the cornerstone of the treatment plan. Prior to that time, traditional psychotherapy alone resulted in minimal improvement. The use of Catholic spirituality in the treatment of homosexuality follows a similar pattern.
The most common conflicts at different life stages that predispose individuals to homosexual attractions and behavior are loneliness and sadness, profound feelings of inadequacy, mistrust and fear, narcissism, sexual addiction, excessive anger, sexual abuse in childhood and a lack of balance in one's life. During times of stress these inner difficulties are activated. In an attempt to seek relief or to escape from this unconscious emotional pain, strong sexual temptations and behavior can occur. This dynamic of inner emotional suffering leading to homosexual desires and activity rarely can begin during childhood but usually it develops in early adolescence. However, adult life may be the first time for the emergence of this disorder.
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