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Sunday, 10 August 2008

Damned and doomed by religion if you're gay

It's time government's communities initiative began addressing "the needs of sexual-minority young people from homonegative faith backgrounds and stop pandering to the frank homophobia exposed by some of the religious professionals and community spokespersons of all the Abrahamic faiths", according a psychotherapist who is also a Catholic.

In a Guardian article, he says, "From a psychotherapeutic point of view, one of the risk factors for mental health difficulties among gay and lesbian people is growing up, and remaining, in one of the toxic versions of the monotheistic religions."

Nothing new there, then, but that's not a criticism of the writer, Dr Bernard Ratigan, a member of the Roman Catholic caucus of the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement and of the International Association for Relational Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy. Indeed, it's good that he's said it.

It shouldn't need to be said, though, should it? It should be foremost in the minds of policymakers. Growing up in these overreligious environments can be toxic enough. If you're not of the approved sexuality, then you're damned and doomed.

"In Leicester, where I work," Ratigan writes, "it is not unusual for sexual-minority teenagers and young adults from the black and ethnic minority communities to seek consultations after getting little satisfaction from their religious professionals and GPs. The web is an invaluable aid for young adults, helping them find confidential sources that will take their concerns seriously without making judgments. A frequently posed question is: if my faith is wrong about my sexuality, where does this leave me?"

Often going mad, that's where it leaves you. And need we point out how many people have suffered – even to the point of suicide – as a result the fascistic nature of religion when it comes to sexuality?


Roy Saich said...

They may ask, "if they are wrong about my sexuality, where does that leave me?" but I hope they would instead ask, "if they are wrong about my sexuality are they right about anything else?"

Anonymous said...

Norway: Islamic Council Finds Itself Unable To Retract Death Penalty For All Homosexuals
This even though they face a loss of funds.

You have to admire their commitment to ensure that Allah gets his blood sacrifices, don't you?