Meet the 'gay cure' therapist who has sex with his patients

vt-author-image

By VT

Article saved!Article saved!

In 2018, one would hope that gay conversion therapy is something that is long behind us. Unfortunately, that assumption would be wrong. Despite numerous studies asserting that you can't change a person's sexuality and medical, scientific, and governmental organisations all expressing concern, "reparative therapy" remains a dark reality for some homosexual people.

So, why are some people so determined to stop homosexual people loving who they want to love? Surprisingly - or perhaps unsurprisingly depending on how you look at it - researchers have asserted that the answer to this question could lie in the idea that homophobic people are actually more likely to be gay themselves.

Back in 2012, teams from the University of Rochester in New York, the University of California and the University of Essex analysed four separate experiments which had taken place in the US and Germany, looking at the discrepancies between what people say about their sexual orientation and their implicit sexual orientation based on a reaction-time test. They concluded that there was empirical evidence to suggest that in some individuals, homophobia is actually the external manifestation of repressed sexual desires they feel towards their own gender.

However, this study came to life recently when it was revealed that a Toronto-based psychiatrist who practised gay “cure” therapy had been found guilty of sexual misconduct. Reparative therapy advocate Dr Melvyn Iscove, 72, who was registered as a psychiatrist with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, has been suspended indefinitely for having sex with his gay patients.

Iscove, who was described by Ontario's medical regulator as having a "special interest" in treating gay patients, was found to have engaged in sex acts with men he was treating during therapy sessions, as well as once having sexual intercourse with a male patient in his office. The allegations, which date back to the late 1990s and early 2000s, state that the psychiatrist had engaged in mutual masturbation and oral sex with two male patients on different occasions, as well as anal penetration with another.

In a horrible twist, the men involved are said to have believed that the sexual abuse was "part of the therapy". The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario’s discipline committee wrote: “Neither complainant described any emotional or romantic aspects of the sexual activity with Dr Iscove, and both said that at some point, they thought that the sexual activity was part of the therapy and an attempt to cure them of homosexuality by engaging in the acts, rather than fantasizing about them.”

Doctors found to have had sex with a patient automatically lose their licences, so Iscove’s licence was immediately suspended after the panel found him guilty of the allegations. However, the 72-year-old has denied all claims and is said to be considering an appeal: “We're both very disappointed with the result, obviously,” said Iscove’s lawyer, Alfred Kwinter. “Dr. Iscove has always denied the allegations, he continues to do so, and he's seriously considering an appeal.”

[[heroimage||http://cdn.junglecreations.com/wp/junglecms/2018/03/psychoananalysis-compressor.jpg||image]]

Nonetheless, the Toronto Star reports that this isn't the only sexual harassment case that the gay "cure" therapist is facing; the doctor still faces a separate disciplinary hearing for an allegation of “improper conduct in a public men’s washroom,” according to his profile on the College of Physicians’ online register.

The Toronto-based psychiatrist's case is, unfortunately, one of many similar instances which have seen homophobic people eventually coming out as gay. Take the case of Ted Haggard, for example. As the founder and former pastor of the New Life Church in Colorado Springs and "one of the most influential evangelicals in America", Haggard strongly opposed gay marriage.

However, in November 2006, it was revealed that the father of five had engaged in a three-year sexual relationship with a male escort who he also paid for crystal meth. Haggard, who had been married for 30 years, denied the claims, but after a voicemail featuring him asking his lover for drugs was released, his story unravelled and he was forced to admit guilt and resigned from the church.

Although the idea of homophobic people repressing their own homosexual urges is certainly not true for all cases, it's certainly an intriguing explanation for some. Professor Ryan, a professor of psychology at the University of Rochester in New York, commented on this idea of homophobic homosexuals, stating that they are more likely to come from conservative authoritarian households which forbade such desires.

"People who have homophobic attitudes, who are more prejudice or discriminatory against gay people, are themselves more likely to have a discrepancy between their unconscious attractions to same-sex partners than what they are aware of," he explains. "Those people who have such discrepancies, who have really a split between their unconscious attraction and what they consciously say about themselves, are more likely to come from authoritarian homes. If you are a parent who really believes your child should be straight, and when you use whatever means you can to convince them that they're only good and worthy if they are, that would be very controlling and it creates a lot of conflict in the child."

Although the reasons behind homophobic behaviour are important, we must remember the true victims of situations like these: gay men who encounter homophobia. More specifically in the case of Dr Melvyn Iscove, the two patients who felt as if they had to "fix" themselves by attending gay "cure" therapy and who were then taken advantage of. We can only hope that "reparative therapy", still legal in 41 states, swiftly becomes a thing of the past.

Meet the 'gay cure' therapist who has sex with his patients

vt-author-image

By VT

Article saved!Article saved!

In 2018, one would hope that gay conversion therapy is something that is long behind us. Unfortunately, that assumption would be wrong. Despite numerous studies asserting that you can't change a person's sexuality and medical, scientific, and governmental organisations all expressing concern, "reparative therapy" remains a dark reality for some homosexual people.

So, why are some people so determined to stop homosexual people loving who they want to love? Surprisingly - or perhaps unsurprisingly depending on how you look at it - researchers have asserted that the answer to this question could lie in the idea that homophobic people are actually more likely to be gay themselves.

Back in 2012, teams from the University of Rochester in New York, the University of California and the University of Essex analysed four separate experiments which had taken place in the US and Germany, looking at the discrepancies between what people say about their sexual orientation and their implicit sexual orientation based on a reaction-time test. They concluded that there was empirical evidence to suggest that in some individuals, homophobia is actually the external manifestation of repressed sexual desires they feel towards their own gender.

However, this study came to life recently when it was revealed that a Toronto-based psychiatrist who practised gay “cure” therapy had been found guilty of sexual misconduct. Reparative therapy advocate Dr Melvyn Iscove, 72, who was registered as a psychiatrist with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, has been suspended indefinitely for having sex with his gay patients.

Iscove, who was described by Ontario's medical regulator as having a "special interest" in treating gay patients, was found to have engaged in sex acts with men he was treating during therapy sessions, as well as once having sexual intercourse with a male patient in his office. The allegations, which date back to the late 1990s and early 2000s, state that the psychiatrist had engaged in mutual masturbation and oral sex with two male patients on different occasions, as well as anal penetration with another.

In a horrible twist, the men involved are said to have believed that the sexual abuse was "part of the therapy". The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario’s discipline committee wrote: “Neither complainant described any emotional or romantic aspects of the sexual activity with Dr Iscove, and both said that at some point, they thought that the sexual activity was part of the therapy and an attempt to cure them of homosexuality by engaging in the acts, rather than fantasizing about them.”

Doctors found to have had sex with a patient automatically lose their licences, so Iscove’s licence was immediately suspended after the panel found him guilty of the allegations. However, the 72-year-old has denied all claims and is said to be considering an appeal: “We're both very disappointed with the result, obviously,” said Iscove’s lawyer, Alfred Kwinter. “Dr. Iscove has always denied the allegations, he continues to do so, and he's seriously considering an appeal.”

[[heroimage||http://cdn.junglecreations.com/wp/junglecms/2018/03/psychoananalysis-compressor.jpg||image]]

Nonetheless, the Toronto Star reports that this isn't the only sexual harassment case that the gay "cure" therapist is facing; the doctor still faces a separate disciplinary hearing for an allegation of “improper conduct in a public men’s washroom,” according to his profile on the College of Physicians’ online register.

The Toronto-based psychiatrist's case is, unfortunately, one of many similar instances which have seen homophobic people eventually coming out as gay. Take the case of Ted Haggard, for example. As the founder and former pastor of the New Life Church in Colorado Springs and "one of the most influential evangelicals in America", Haggard strongly opposed gay marriage.

However, in November 2006, it was revealed that the father of five had engaged in a three-year sexual relationship with a male escort who he also paid for crystal meth. Haggard, who had been married for 30 years, denied the claims, but after a voicemail featuring him asking his lover for drugs was released, his story unravelled and he was forced to admit guilt and resigned from the church.

Although the idea of homophobic people repressing their own homosexual urges is certainly not true for all cases, it's certainly an intriguing explanation for some. Professor Ryan, a professor of psychology at the University of Rochester in New York, commented on this idea of homophobic homosexuals, stating that they are more likely to come from conservative authoritarian households which forbade such desires.

"People who have homophobic attitudes, who are more prejudice or discriminatory against gay people, are themselves more likely to have a discrepancy between their unconscious attractions to same-sex partners than what they are aware of," he explains. "Those people who have such discrepancies, who have really a split between their unconscious attraction and what they consciously say about themselves, are more likely to come from authoritarian homes. If you are a parent who really believes your child should be straight, and when you use whatever means you can to convince them that they're only good and worthy if they are, that would be very controlling and it creates a lot of conflict in the child."

Although the reasons behind homophobic behaviour are important, we must remember the true victims of situations like these: gay men who encounter homophobia. More specifically in the case of Dr Melvyn Iscove, the two patients who felt as if they had to "fix" themselves by attending gay "cure" therapy and who were then taken advantage of. We can only hope that "reparative therapy", still legal in 41 states, swiftly becomes a thing of the past.