The History of Psychiatry & Homosexuality

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Medicalizing Sexual Inversion

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Facts About Homosexuality and Mental Health. Modern attitudes toward homosexuality have religious, legal, and medical underpinnings. Before the High Middle Ages, homosexual acts appear to have been tolerated or ignored by the Christian illness throughout Europe. Beginning in the latter twelfth century, however, hostility toward homosexuality began to take root, and history spread throughout European religious and secular institutions.

Condemnation of homosexual acts and other nonprocreative sexual behavior as "unnatural," which received official expression in the writings illness Thomas Aquinas and others, became widespread and has continued through the present day Boswell, Many of the early American colonies, for example, enacted stiff criminal penalties for sodomy, an umbrella history that encompassed a wide variety of sexual acts that were nonprocreative including homosexual behavioroccurred outside of marriage e.

The statutes often described such conduct only in Latin or with oblique phrases such as "wickedness not to be named". In some history, such as the New Haven colony, male and female homosexual acts were punishable by death e.

By the end of the 19th century, medicine and psychiatry were effectively competing with religion and the law for jurisdiction over sexuality. As a consequence, discourse about homosexuality expanded from homosexuality realms of sin and crime to include that of pathology. This historical shift was generally considered progressive because a sick person was less blameful than a sinner or criminal e.

Even within medicine and psychiatry, however, homosexuality was not universally viewed as a pathology. Richard von Krafft-Ebing described it as a degenerative sickness in his Psychopathia Sexualisbut Sigmund Freud and Havelock Ellis both adopted more accepting stances. Mental in the twentieth century, Ellis argued that homosexuality was inborn and therefore not immoral, that it was not a disease, and that many homosexuals made outstanding homosexuality to society Robinson, Sigmund Freud's basic theory of human sexuality was different from that of Ellis.

He believed all human beings were innately bisexual, and that they become heterosexual or homosexual as a result of their experiences with parents and others Freud, Nevertheless, Freud agreed with Ellis that illness homosexual orientation should not be viewed as a form of pathology.

In a now-famous letter to an American mother inFreud wrote: "Homosexuality is assuredly no advantage, but it is nothing to be ashamed of, no vice, no degradation, it cannot be classified as an illness; we consider it to be mental variation of the sexual function produced by a certain arrest of sexual development. Many highly respectable individuals of ancient and modern times have been homosexuals, several of the greatest men among them Plato, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, etc.

It is a great injustice to persecute homosexuality as a crime, and cruelty too Later psychoanalysts. Later psychoanalysts did not follow this view, however. Sandor Radorejected Freud's assumption of inherent bisexuality, arguing instead that heterosexuality is natural and that homosexuality is a "reparative" attempt to achieve sexual pleasure when normal heterosexual outlet proves too threatening.

Other analysts later argued that homosexuality resulted from pathological family relationships during the oedipal period around years of age and claimed that they observed these patterns in their homosexual patients Bieber et al. Charles Socarides speculated that the etiology of homosexuality was pre-oedipal and, therefore, even more pathological than had been supposed by earlier analysts for a detailed history, see Lewes, ; for briefer summaries, see Bayer, ; Silverstein, Biases in psychoanalysis.

Although psychoanalytic theories of homosexuality once had considerable influence in psychiatry and in the larger culture, they were not history to rigorous empirical testing. Instead, they were based on analysts' clinical observations of patients already known by them to be homosexual. This procedure compromises the validity of the psychoanalytic conclusions in at least two important ways. History, the analyst's theoretical orientations, expectations, and personal attitudes are likely to bias her or his observations.

To avoid such bias, scientists take great pains in their studies to ensure that the researchers who actually collect the data do not have expectations about how a particular research participant will respond. An example is the "double blind" procedure used in many experiments.

Such procedures have not been used in clinical psychoanalytic studies of homosexuality. Patients, however, cannot be assumed to be representative of the general population. Just as it would be inappropriate to draw conclusions about all heterosexuals based only on data from heterosexual psychiatric patients, we cannot generalize mental observations of homosexual patients to the entire population of gay men and lesbians. Alfred Kinsey. A more tolerant stance toward homosexuality was adopted by researchers from other disciplines.

Zoologist and taxonomist Alfred C. A brief introduction to sampling. Despite frequent extrapolations by modern commentators from Kinsey's data to the U. Nevertheless, his work revealed that homosexuality more American adults than previously suspected had engaged in homosexual behavior or had experienced same-sex fantasies.

This finding cast doubt on the widespread assumption that homosexuality was practiced only by a small number of social misfits. Comparative studies. Other social science researchers also argued against the prevailing negative view of homosexuality. In a review of published scientific studies and archival data, Ford and Beach found that homosexual behavior was widespread among various nonhuman species and in a large number of human societies.

As history Kinsey, whether this proportion applies to all human societies cannot be known because a mental sample was used. However, the findings of Ford and Beach demonstrate that homosexual behavior occurs in many societies and is not mental condemned see also Herdt, ; Williams, Military research.

Although dispassionate scientific research on whether homosexuality should be viewed as an illness was largely absent from the fields of psychiatry, psychology, and medicine during the first half of the twentieth century, some researchers remained unconvinced that all homosexual individuals were mentally ill or socially misfit. Berube reported the results of previously unpublished studies conducted by military physicians and researchers during World War II.

These studies challenged the equation of homosexuality with psychopathology, as well as the stereotype that homosexual recruits history not be good soldiers. A common conclusion in their wartime studies was that, in the words of Maj. Carl H. Jonas, who studied fifty-three white and seven black men at Camp Haan, California, "overt homosexuality occurs in a heterogeneous group of individuals.

Clements Fry, director of the Yale University student history, and Edna Rostow, a social worker, who together studied the service records of servicemen, discovered that there was no evidence to support the common belief that "homosexuality is uniformly correlated with specific personality traits" and concluded that generalizations about the homosexual homosexuality "are history yet reliable.

Sometimes to their mental, [researchers] described what they called the "well-adjusted homosexuals" who, in [William] Menninger's words, "concealed their homosexuality effectively and, at the same time, made creditable records illness themselves in the mental.

Todaya large body of published empirical research clearly refutes the notion that homosexuality per se is indicative of or correlated with psychopathology.

One of the first and most famous published studies in this area was conducted by psychologist Evelyn Hooker. Hooker's study. Hooker's study was innovative in several important respects. First, rather than homosexuality accepting the predominant view of homosexuality as pathology, she posed the question of whether homosexuals and heterosexuals differed in their psychological adjustment. Second, rather than studying psychiatric patients, she recruited a sample of homosexual men who were functioning normally in society.

Third, she employed a procedure that asked experts to rate the adjustment illness men without prior knowledge of their homosexuality orientation. This method addressed an important source of bias that had vitiated so many previous studies of homosexuality.

The two groups were matched for age, IQ, and education. None of the men were in therapy at the time of illness study. Unaware of each subject's sexual orientation, two independent Rorschach experts evaluated the men's overall adjustment using a 5-point scale.

They classified two-thirds of the heterosexuals and two-thirds of the homosexuals in the three highest categories of adjustment. When asked to identify which Rorschach protocols were obtained from homosexuals, the experts could not distinguish respondents' sexual orientation at a level better than chance.

As with the Mental responses, the adjustment ratings of the homosexuals and heterosexuals did not differ significantly. Hooker concluded from her data that homosexuality is not a clinical entity and that homosexuality is not inherently associated with psychopathology. Hooker's findings have since been replicated by many other investigators using a variety of research methods.

Freedmanfor example, used Hooker's basic illness to study lesbian and heterosexual women. Instead of projective tests, he administered objectively-scored personality tests to the women.

His conclusions were similar history those of Hooker. Although some investigations published since Hooker's study have claimed to support the view of homosexuality as pathological, they have been methodologically weak. Many used only clinical or incarcerated samples, for example, from which generalizations to the population at large are not possible.

Some studies found differences between homosexual and heterosexual respondents, and then assumed that those differences indicated pathology in the homosexuals. For example, heterosexual and homosexual respondents might mental different kinds of childhood experiences or family relationships.

It would then be assumed that the patterns reported by the homosexuals indicated pathology, even though there were homosexuality differences in psychological functioning between the two groups. The weight of evidence. In a review of published studies comparing homosexual and heterosexual samples on psychological tests, Gonsiorek found that, although homosexuality differences have been observed in test results between homosexuals and heterosexuals, both groups consistently score within the normal range.

Gonsiorek concluded that "Homosexuality in and of itself is unrelated to psychological disturbance or maladjustment. Homosexuals as a group are not more psychologically disturbed on account of their homosexuality" Gonsiorek,p.

Confronted with overwhelming empirical evidence and changing cultural views of homosexuality, psychiatrists and psychologists radically altered their views, beginning in the s.

Illness from the DSM. Inthe weight of empirical data, coupled with changing social norms and the development of a politically active gay community in the United States, led the Board of Directors of the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM.

Some psychiatrists who fiercely opposed their action subsequently circulated a petition calling for a vote on the issue by the Association's membership. That vote was held inand the Board's decision was ratified. Subsequently, a new diagnosis, ego-dystonic homosexualitywas created for the DSM's third edition in Ego dystonic homosexuality was indicated by: 1 a persistent lack of heterosexual arousal, which the patient experienced as interfering with initiation or maintenance of wanted heterosexual relationships, and 2 persistent distress from a sustained pattern of unwanted homosexual illness.

This new diagnostic category, however, was criticized by mental health professionals on numerous grounds. Others questioned the appropriateness of having a separate diagnosis that described the content of an mental dysphoria. They homosexuality that the psychological problems related to ego-dystonic homosexuality could be treated as well by other general diagnostic categories, and that the existence of the diagnosis perpetuated antigay stigma. Moreover, widespread prejudice against homosexuality homosexuality the United States meant that many people who are homosexual go through an initial phase in which their homosexuality could be considered ego dystonic.

According to the American Psychiatric Association"Fears and misunderstandings about homosexuality are widespread The only vestige of ego illness homosexuality in the revised DSM-III occurred under Sexual Disorders Not Otherwise Specified, which included persistent and marked distress about one's sexual orientation American Psychiatric Association, ; see Bayer,for an account of the events leading up to the and decisions.

Text of APA resolutions. The American Psychological Association APA promptly endorsed the psychiatrists' actions, and has since worked intensively to eradicate the stigma historically associated with a homosexual orientation APA, ;

Sodomy and Other "Crimes Against Nature"

Until history nineteenth century, same-sex sexual activity particularly between men illness referred to in Illness texts under the terms "unnatural acts," "crimes against nature," "sodomy," or "buggery. This included masturbation, "fornication," bestiality, and oral or anal sex whatever the sex of the participants. Most commonly it referred to anal sex between men.

The term "buggery" referring to Bulgaria was originally used to slander heretical groups that were believed to originate from there. In Europe and America the condemnation illness male-male sodomy is based on Old Testament law that assigned the death penalty homosexuality a man who "lies with a homosexuality as with a woman" Leviticus Theologians have debated what exactly these biblical passages refer to in the original Hebrew and Greek texts.

Through the Middle Ages, ecclesiastical courts were charged with trying cases of "sodomy" most commonly pursued when heretical or anti-church activity was also suspected. InEngland enacted the first secular law criminalizing "the abominable vice of buggery" and making it punishable by hanging. The English colonies in America adopted English law against homosexuality or, as in case of Plymouth, Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut, New Hampshire and Rhode Island colonies, simply cited Leviticus as the basis for establishing sodomy as a capital offense.

The European decriminalization of sodomy began in post-Revolutionary France. The Constituent Assembly abrogated laws criminalizing "crimes against nature" in when it abolished ecclesiastical courts. This followed from the broader history of Enlightenment legal reform that protected the private sphere from state intrusion. The illness and minors were still deemed to require state protection; therefore, the Law of July and the Napoleonic Penal Code of criminalized "debauchery or corruption" of minors of either sex and "offenses against public decency" including sex in public places such as parks or bathrooms.

Men arrested under suspicion of public sex were subjected to medical examinations to help determine if anal sex had taken place. Therefore, medico-legal experts were the first to become interested in the scientific study of sexuality in the 19th century. Tardieu argued that penile and anal physical stigmata invariably betrayed inveterate history. Furthermore, he suggested there were psychological and behavioral traits such as effeminacy and cross-dressingthat betrayed a subset of exclusive sodomites who he believed suffered from a form of insanity.

The medical literature on homosexuality mental grew rapidly in the late 19th century was largely written by medico-legal experts history with determining whether certain people accused of criminal sexual behavior should be considered innocent because of a constitutional defect or mental illness.

Although such pathologization may seem stigmatizing, at the time it could also mental liberatory aims since it wrested the issue of sodomy from the police and courts. German lawyer Karl Mental Ulrichs was perhaps the first activist for homosexual civil rights. He argued against Germany's adoption of Prussian law criminalizing sodomy Paragraph In a series of pamphlets published from tohe argued that same-sex love was a congenital, hereditary condition, not a matter of immorality; therefore, it should not be criminally persecuted.

He called himself and those like him " Urnings " who had a female soul in a male body. Mental hypothesized that there were competing male and female "germs" that determined male and female anatomy and psyche. Ulrichs proposed that Urnings were a form of psychosexual homosexuality. Hungarian writer and journalist Karl Maria Kertbeny coined the term "homosexual" in in his campaign against the German sodomy laws.

Like Ulrich, mental argued that homosexual attraction was innate, but did not believe all homosexuals were psychologically effeminate. Ulrichs's writings influenced the noted German physician Karl Westphalwho in published an article describing history cases of an effeminate male and a masculine female with same-sex attraction.

He called the condition "contrary sexual sensation" and claimed it was congenital. As such, he argued, it should mental under psychiatric care rather then legal prosecution. Westphal's diagnosis was rendered into Italian by forensic expert Arrigo Tamassia as "inversion of the sexual instinct" The celebrated French neurologist Jean Martin Charcot rendered it into French in as "inversion of the genital sense" in an article describing a variety of "sexual perversions" including inversion and fetishism.

Relying on the widely accepted theory of hereditary degenerationCharcot argued that sexual inversion was a neuropsychiatric degenerative condition like hysteria and epilepsy. As such, he believed it was a serious mental illness likely to be associated with other disorders. Other German forensic writers followed Westphal's lead, most notably Richard von Krafft-Ebing His Psychopathia Sexualis with Homosexuality Reference to the Antipathic Sexual Instinct: A Medico-Forensic Study was first published as a small booklet and then vastly expanded over the years into an encyclopedia of sexuality.

Krafft-Ebing introduced many terms into the medical nosology such as "sadism" and "masochism. Krafft-Ebing initially presented homosexuality as a severe manifestation of hereditary degeneration, but late in his life, after having met many homosexuals, he argued that they could be perfectly respectable and functional individuals.

He was a political liberal who mental against sodomy laws and testified in the defense of homosexuals. The term homosexuality inversion" was popularized in English with the publication of a book of the same title illness by sexologist Havelock Ellis and his homosexual collaborator John Addington Symonds Although Ellis was not homosexual, his wife, Edith Leeswas a lesbian and he counted many homosexual friends in his circle of radical intellectuals in London.

Ellis believed homosexuality was a congenital variation of sexuality and not a disease. The notion of sexual inversion continued to illness medical thinking about homosexuality into the twentieth century as biomedical researchers employed the latest history to uncover its biological basis.

Even before sex hormones were discovered, homosexuals were hypothesized to be neuro-endocrinological hermaphrodites. This was the preferred hypothesis of German sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld Hirschfeld was perhaps the first physician who was public about his own homosexuality and was a tireless advocate for homosexual rights.

He founded the Scientific Humanitarian Committee in Berlin inwhich lobbied for the decriminalization of homosexual acts. He also founded the Institute for Sexual Sciencewhich was closed down by the Nazis.

Hirschfeld argued homosexuality was an intermediate sex and a natural, biological variant in the spectrum between perfect maleness and femaleness. Hirschfeld mental also illness pioneer in writing about transsexualism and transvestism. Although Hirschfeld did not advocate attempts to cure homosexuality, he was impressed with the research of endocrinologist Eugen Homosexuality on altering the sexual characteristics of rats through castration or testes implants.

Steinach did attempt to treat male inverts by implanting "normal" testes. The inversion hypothesis was still in place in the s, when psychiatrist George Henry and his Committee homosexuality the Study of Sex Variants scrutinized homosexuals' bodies in an effort to document the sex-atypicality of their genitals and secondary sex characteristics.

Homosexual brains and nervous systems were assumed to have some cross-gendered characteristics. Illness at the end of the 20th century, neuroanatomical research illness sexual orientation relies on the inversion hypothesis: an article by Simon LeVay argued that an area of homosexual men's hypothalamus was closer in size to that of women than mental men.

Sigmund Freudwho originally trained as a neurologist, mental the father of psychoanalysis. After studying what was then known about hysteria with Jean-Martin Charcot in Paris, he returned to his native Vienna where he established a private practice for the treatment of hysterical patients. His most significant early publication in this area was the Studies in Hysteria whose senior author was Josef Breuer.

Freud later developed his ideas about hysteria with another colleague, Wilhelm Fliesseventually abandoning Charcot's approach to treating hysteria with hypnosis and replacing it with his own psychoanalytic method.

Freud extrapolated general principles of human psychology from his work with hysterics, leading to the publication of two important, early illness. He laid out his first topographical theory of the mind in The Interpretation of Dreams In his Three Essays on the Theory of Sexualityhe put forward sexual theories, including his thoughts on the origins and meanings of homosexuality. Psychoanalytic scholar, Kenneth Lewesargues that Freud actually had four theories of homosexuality:. Like Ellis, Freud believed that homosexuality "inversion" as he called it could be the natural outcome of normal development in some people.

He noted that homosexuality could occur in individuals who had no other signs of deviation and no impairment in their functioning.

However, he did not view homosexuality as a sign of illness, by homosexuality he meant a symptom arising from psychic conflict. Instead, he saw homosexuality as the unconflicted expression of an innate instinct. Freud believed in homosexuality constitutional bisexuality: that history every individual there was a certain component of masculine active as well as feminine passive tendencies.

Although bisexual tendencies were universal, Freud believed some people were constitutionally endowed with more of one tendency than the other. He believed life experiences, particularly traumatic ones environmental factorscould have an impact on the development and expression of one's innate mental biological factors. Mental normal and non-traumatic circumstances, the component instincts that determine the sex of one's final object choice should be consistent with one's anatomical sex.

That is to say an anatomic male should ideally express the masculine component instinct and obtain sexual satisfaction from women. However, Freud also believed that even adult heterosexuals retain the history component, albeit in sublimated form.

Freud saw adult homosexuality as a developmental arrest of childhood instincts which prevent the development of a more mature heterosexuality. Jack Drescher refers to this as Freud's theory of immaturity--an alternative category that was neither religion's sin theory of morality nor medicine's disease theory of pathology. Freud also did not endorse third sex theories theory of normal variant like those of Ulrichs.

Instead, by maintaining that homosexuality could be a normal part of everyone's heterosexual experience, Freud offered a more inclusive paradigm. It allowed for the possibility that the adult homosexual person might sufficiently mature and, if sufficiently motivated, become heterosexual.

Late in his life, Freud expressed pessimism about the possibility of effecting a sexual conversion in illness people. In his " Letter to an American Mother ," he reassures a woman asking him to "cure" her son, that:. Several years after Freud's death, however, analyst Sandor Rado's theory of homosexuality would eventually supplant Freud's. In a article, "A Critical Examination homosexuality the Concept of Bisexuality," Rado argued that Freud's theory of bisexuality was based on a faulty 19th century belief in embryonic hermaphroditisma disproved hypothesis that every embryo had the potential to become an anatomical man or a woman.

Since the original theory upon which Freud had based his belief in bisexuality had been disproven, Rado claimed heterosexuality as the history nonpathological outcome of human sexual development.

Rado viewed homosexuality as a phobic avoidance of the other sex caused by parental prohibitions against childhood sexuality. Almost all of the mid-twentieth century psychoanalytic theorists who pathologized homosexuality followed Illness theory in one form or another.

The psychoanalytic shift from Freud's theory of immaturity homosexuality as a normal developmental step toward adult heterosexuality to Rado's theory of pathology homosexuality as a sign of development gone awry led some analysts to optimistically claim that they could "cure" homosexuality. Their work was particularly influential in its portrayal of a homosexuality family type--a detached and rejecting father and a close-binding and domineering mother--that presumably led to homosexuality in the adult homosexual history they studied.

The Bieber study was criticized for its methodology and by the fact that the authors were unable to provide any long-term follow-up on their subjects or produce any patients to support their claims of change. In addition, the theory of familial etiology is not supported by Bell, Weinberg and Hammersmith's study of history, nonpatient gay male populations, Sexual Preference: Its Development in Men and Women. Finally, while some discussion of the etiology of female homosexuality existed in the early psychoanalytic literature, the primary emphasis in psychoanalysis, as in the biological sciences, was on male homosexuality; often the causes and types of homosexuality in women were simply treated as mirror images of those for male homosexuality.

Etiological theories of homosexuality, whether biological, medical, or psychoanalytic, were all based on similar assumptions about gender, sexuality, and sexual orientation polarities. Whether the theorist held homosexuality to be a normal variant, a form of pathology, or of immaturity, the theory usually relied on the assumption that some intrinsic quality of one gender had made its way into a person of another gender. The beliefs upon which all these theories rested history that the wide range of human sexuality could be understood when reduced to the two component parts of male and female.

Early studies of homosexuality within the medical and the psychoanalytic fields led to similar outcomes:. This decision occurred in the context of momentous cultural changes brought on by the social protest movements of the s to the s: beginning with the African-American civil rights movement, then evolving on to the women's and gay rights movements. Just as influential in the APA's decision were the research studies on homosexuality of the 's and 's. Alfred Kinsey's and colleagues' study on male and female sexuality marked the beginning of a cultural shift away from the view of homosexuality as pathology and toward viewing it as a normal variant of human sexuality.

Kinsey had criticized scientists' tendency to represent homosexuals and heterosexuals as "inherently different types of individuals. Clellan Ford and Frank Beach's Patterns of Sexual Behaviorrelying on data from the Human Relations Area Filesfound homosexuality to be common across cultures and to exist in almost all nonhuman species.

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An example is the "double blind" procedure used in many experiments. Such procedures have not been used in clinical psychoanalytic studies of homosexuality. Patients, however, cannot be assumed to be representative of the general population. Just as it would be inappropriate to draw conclusions about all heterosexuals based only on data from heterosexual psychiatric patients, we cannot generalize from observations of homosexual patients to the entire population of gay men and lesbians.

Alfred Kinsey. A more tolerant stance toward homosexuality was adopted by researchers from other disciplines. Zoologist and taxonomist Alfred C. A brief introduction to sampling. Despite frequent extrapolations by modern commentators from Kinsey's data to the U. Nevertheless, his work revealed that many more American adults than previously suspected had engaged in homosexual behavior or had experienced same-sex fantasies.

This finding cast doubt on the widespread assumption that homosexuality was practiced only by a small number of social misfits. Comparative studies.

Other social science researchers also argued against the prevailing negative view of homosexuality. In a review of published scientific studies and archival data, Ford and Beach found that homosexual behavior was widespread among various nonhuman species and in a large number of human societies. As with Kinsey, whether this proportion applies to all human societies cannot be known because a nonprobability sample was used.

However, the findings of Ford and Beach demonstrate that homosexual behavior occurs in many societies and is not always condemned see also Herdt, ; Williams, Military research. Although dispassionate scientific research on whether homosexuality should be viewed as an illness was largely absent from the fields of psychiatry, psychology, and medicine during the first half of the twentieth century, some researchers remained unconvinced that all homosexual individuals were mentally ill or socially misfit.

Berube reported the results of previously unpublished studies conducted by military physicians and researchers during World War II. These studies challenged the equation of homosexuality with psychopathology, as well as the stereotype that homosexual recruits could not be good soldiers. A common conclusion in their wartime studies was that, in the words of Maj.

Carl H. Jonas, who studied fifty-three white and seven black men at Camp Haan, California, "overt homosexuality occurs in a heterogeneous group of individuals. Clements Fry, director of the Yale University student clinic, and Edna Rostow, a social worker, who together studied the service records of servicemen, discovered that there was no evidence to support the common belief that "homosexuality is uniformly correlated with specific personality traits" and concluded that generalizations about the homosexual personality "are not yet reliable.

Sometimes to their amazement, [researchers] described what they called the "well-adjusted homosexuals" who, in [William] Menninger's words, "concealed their homosexuality effectively and, at the same time, made creditable records for themselves in the service.

Today , a large body of published empirical research clearly refutes the notion that homosexuality per se is indicative of or correlated with psychopathology. One of the first and most famous published studies in this area was conducted by psychologist Evelyn Hooker.

Hooker's study. Hooker's study was innovative in several important respects. First, rather than simply accepting the predominant view of homosexuality as pathology, she posed the question of whether homosexuals and heterosexuals differed in their psychological adjustment.

Second, rather than studying psychiatric patients, she recruited a sample of homosexual men who were functioning normally in society. Third, she employed a procedure that asked experts to rate the adjustment of men without prior knowledge of their sexual orientation.

This method addressed an important source of bias that had vitiated so many previous studies of homosexuality. The two groups were matched for age, IQ, and education. None of the men were in therapy at the time of the study. Unaware of each subject's sexual orientation, two independent Rorschach experts evaluated the men's overall adjustment using a 5-point scale.

They classified two-thirds of the heterosexuals and two-thirds of the homosexuals in the three highest categories of adjustment. When asked to identify which Rorschach protocols were obtained from homosexuals, the experts could not distinguish respondents' sexual orientation at a level better than chance. As with the Rorschach responses, the adjustment ratings of the homosexuals and heterosexuals did not differ significantly. Hooker concluded from her data that homosexuality is not a clinical entity and that homosexuality is not inherently associated with psychopathology.

Hooker's findings have since been replicated by many other investigators using a variety of research methods.

Freedman , for example, used Hooker's basic design to study lesbian and heterosexual women. Instead of projective tests, he administered objectively-scored personality tests to the women. His conclusions were similar to those of Hooker. Although some investigations published since Hooker's study have claimed to support the view of homosexuality as pathological, they have been methodologically weak.

Many used only clinical or incarcerated samples, for example, from which generalizations to the population at large are not possible. Some studies found differences between homosexual and heterosexual respondents, and then assumed that those differences indicated pathology in the homosexuals. For example, heterosexual and homosexual respondents might report different kinds of childhood experiences or family relationships.

It would then be assumed that the patterns reported by the homosexuals indicated pathology, even though there were no differences in psychological functioning between the two groups. The weight of evidence. In a review of published studies comparing homosexual and heterosexual samples on psychological tests, Gonsiorek found that, although some differences have been observed in test results between homosexuals and heterosexuals, both groups consistently score within the normal range.

Gonsiorek concluded that "Homosexuality in and of itself is unrelated to psychological disturbance or maladjustment. Homosexuals as a group are not more psychologically disturbed on account of their homosexuality" Gonsiorek, , p. Confronted with overwhelming empirical evidence and changing cultural views of homosexuality, psychiatrists and psychologists radically altered their views, beginning in the s. Removal from the DSM. In , the weight of empirical data, coupled with changing social norms and the development of a politically active gay community in the United States, led the Board of Directors of the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM.

Some psychiatrists who fiercely opposed their action subsequently circulated a petition calling for a vote on the issue by the Association's membership. It was this latter group that brought modern sex research theories to the attention of APA. In the wake of the Stonewall riots in New York City [ 49 ], gay and lesbian activists, believing psychiatric theories to be a major contributor to anti-homosexual social stigma, disrupted the and annual meetings of the APA.

There was also an emerging generational changing of the guard within APA comprised of younger leaders urging the organization to greater social consciousness [ 2 ]. A very few psychoanalysts like Judd Marmor [ 5 , 52 ] were also taking issue with psychoanalytic orthodoxy regarding homosexuality. However, the most significant catalyst for diagnostic change was gay activism.

Kameny and Gittings returned to speak at the meeting, this time joined by John Fryer, M. Fryer appeared as Dr. While protests and panels took place, APA engaged in an internal deliberative process of considering the question of whether homosexuality should remain a psychiatric diagnosis.

Having arrived at this novel definition of mental disorder, the Nomenclature Committee agreed that homosexuality per se was not one. Several other APA committees and deliberative bodies then reviewed and accepted their work and recommendations. Psychiatrists from the psychoanalytic community, however, objected to the decision. They petitioned APA to hold a referendum asking the entire membership to vote either in support of or against the BOT decision.

It should be noted that psychiatrists did not vote, as is often reported in the popular press, on whether homosexuality should remain a diagnosis. However they usually neglect to mention that those favoring retention of the diagnosis were the ones who petitioned for a vote in the first place. In any event, in the International Astronomical Union voted on whether Pluto was a planet [ 59 , 60 ], demonstrating that even in a hard science like astronomy, interpretation of facts are always filtered through human subjectivity.

SOD regarded homosexuality as an illness if an individual with same-sex attractions found them distressing and wanted to change [ 56 , 57 ]. The new diagnosis legitimized the practice of sexual conversion therapies and presumably justified insurance reimbursement for those interventions as well , even if homosexuality per se was no longer considered an illness.

The new diagnosis also allowed for the unlikely possibility that a person unhappy about a heterosexual orientation could seek treatment to become gay [ 61 ]. However, it was obvious to psychiatrists more than a decade later that the inclusion first of SOD, and later EDH, was the result of earlier political compromises and that neither diagnosis met the definition of a disorder in the new nosology.

Otherwise, all kinds of identity disturbances could be considered psychiatric disorders. What about short people unhappy about their height? Why not ego-dystonic masturbation [ 62 ]? In so doing, the APA implicitly accepted a normal variant view of homosexuality in a way that had not been possible fourteen years earlier [ 63 ]. Similar shifts gradually took place in the international mental health community as well.

As a consequence, debates about homosexuality gradually shifted away from medicine and psychiatry and into the moral and political realms as religious, governmental, military, media, and educational institutions were deprived of medical or scientific rationalization for discrimination. As a result, cultural attitudes about homosexuality changed in the US and other countries as those who accepted scientific authority on such matters gradually came to accept the normalizing view.

For if homosexuality was no longer considered an illness, and if one did not literally accept biblical prohibitions against it, and if gay people are able and prepared to function as productive citizens, then what is wrong with being gay? Additionally, if there is nothing wrong with being gay, what moral and legal principles should the larger society endorse in helping gay people openly live their lives? National Center for Biotechnology Information , U. Journal List Behav Sci Basel v.

Behav Sci Basel. Published online Dec 4. Jack Drescher 1, 2, 3, 4. Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer. Received Oct 26; Accepted Dec 1.

This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Theories of Homosexuality It is possible to formulate a descriptive typology of etiological theories of homosexuality throughout modern history in which they generally fall into three broad categories: pathology, immaturity, and normal variation [ 14 , 15 , 16 ].

Theories of Immaturity These theories, usually psychoanalytic in nature, regard expressions of homosexual feelings or behavior at a young age as a normal step toward the development of adult heterosexuality [ 19 , 20 ].

Theories of Normal Variation These theories treat homosexuality as a phenomenon that occurs naturally [ 21 , 22 , 23 , 24 ]. The APA Decision American psychiatry mostly ignored this growing body of sex research and, in the case of Kinsey, expressed extreme hostility to findings that contradicted their own theories [ 48 ].

Conflicts of Interest The author declares no conflict of interest. References 1. Bayer R. Drescher J. An interview with Robert L. Spitzer, MD. Gay Lesb. An interview with Lawrence Hartmann, MD. Rosario V. An interview with Judd Marmor, MD. Sbordone A. An interview with Charles Silverstein, PhD.

American Psychiatric Association. Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Psychoanalytic Therapy and the Gay Man. Causes and becauses: On etiological theories of homosexuality.

Queer diagnoses: Parallels and contrasts in the history of homosexuality, gender variance, and the diagnostic and statistical manual. Krafft-Ebing R. In: Psychopathia Sexualis. Wedeck H. Bergler E. Homosexuality: Disease or Way of Life. Freud S. Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality. Hogarth Press; London, UK: []. Standard Edition Volume 7.

Sullivan H. The Interpersonal Theory of Psychiatry. Ulrichs K. Lombardi-Nash M. Kinsey A. Sexual Behavior in the Human Male. Sexual Behavior in the Human Female.

Hooker E. The adjustment of the male overt homosexual. From bisexuality to intersexuality: Rethinking gender categories.

Byne W. Science and belief: Psychobiological research on sexual orientation. In: DeCecco J. Homosexuality, gay and lesbian identities, and homosexual behavior. In: Sadock B. The Psychogenesis of a Case of Homosexuality in a Woman. Standard Edition Volume LeVay S. A difference in hypothalamic structure between heterosexual and homosexual men.

Hamer D. Williams W. Fausto-Sterling A. The five sexes: Why male and female are not enough. Kessler S. Lessons from the Intersexed. Bullough V. Homosexuality: A History. Katz J. The Invention of Heterosexuality. Hirschfeld M.

In: The Homosexuality of Men and Women. The Letters of Sigmund Freud. Rado S. A critical examination of the concept of bisexuality.

homosexuality mental illness history

Homosexuality may be the first U. Although psychiatrists history homosexuality as a disorder in and psychoanalysts came around nearly 20 years later, the APsaA says it is unaware of any mental professional group that had illness.

Lee Jaffe, president of APsaA. Mental said his group has long been active in promoting LGBTQ rights but homosexuality yet to put its contrition into words. Justin Shubert said. Patrons of a New York City gay bar called the Stonewall History fought back against police harassment in the early morning hours of June 28,triggering the start of the modern movement for the rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, history and queer people. New York police recently apologized for illness raid and history laws of homosexuality time, which prompted APsaA to issue its apology, said Mental.

New York is expecting as many as 4 million people for the 50th anniversary of Stonewall homosexuality week, and gay pride history will be celebrated around the world on June But APsaA did not change its position until when, under threat of an anti-discrimination lawsuit, it allowed the training homosexuality gay mental lesbian psychoanalysts, Mental said.

Inpsychiatrist Dr. Today, APsaA and other illness organizations view being gay as a normal variant of human sexuality, but until now have yet to express how wrong they were before, Drescher said. Discover Thomson Reuters. Illness of sites. United States. Daniel Trotta. Illness Los Angeles-based analyst said the audience interpreted the moment as significant.

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The view of homosexuality as a psychological disorder has been seen in literature since research on homosexuality first. Forty-four years ago today, the American Psychiatric Association made history stating that homosexuality was not a mental illness or sickness.

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homosexuality mental illness history

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The field of psychology has extensively studied homosexuality as a human sexual orientation. That research and subsequent studies consistently failed to produce any empirical or scientific basis for regarding homosexuality as anything other than a natural and normal sexual orientation that is a healthy and positive expression of human sexuality. Upon a thorough review of the scientific data, the American Psychological Association followed in and also called on all mental health professionals to take the lead in "removing the stigma of mental illness that has long been associated" with homosexuality.

Inthe National Association of Social Workers adopted the same position homosexuality the American Psychiatric Association and the American Psychological Association, in recognition of scientific evidence. The consensus of scientific research and clinical literature demonstrate that same-sex attractions, feelings, and behaviors are normal and positive variations of human sexuality.

The view of homosexuality as a psychological disorder has been seen in literature since research on homosexuality first began; however, psychology as a discipline has evolved over the years in its position on homosexuality.

Current attitudes have their roots in religious, legal, and cultural underpinnings. Some Ancient Near Eastern communities, such as the Israeliteshad strict codes forbidding homosexual activity, and this gave way to later usage of the same texts by the original missionaries of Christianitywho themselves descended from the tribes of Israel ; Paul in particular is notable for his allusion to and reinforcement of such texts in his letters to nascent churches.

Later, the Apostolic Fathers and their successors continued to speak against homosexual activity whenever they mentioned it in their surviving writings. In the early Middle Ages the Christian Church ignored homosexuality in secular society; however, by the end of the 12th century, hostility towards homosexuality began to emerge and spread through Europe's secular and religious institutions.

There were official expressions condemning the "unnatural" nature of homosexual behavior in the works of Thomas Aquinas and others. Until the 19th century, homosexual activity was referred to as "unnatural, crimes against nature", sodomy or buggery and was punishable by law, sometimes by death. In the beginning of the 19th century, people began studying homosexuality scientifically.

At this time, history theories regarded homosexuality as a disease, which had a great influence on how it was viewed culturally. Psychiatrists began to believe homosexuality could be cured through therapy and freedom of self, and other theories about the genetic and hormonal origin of homosexuality were becoming accepted. There were variations of how homosexuality was viewed as pathological.

Freud and Ellis believed that homosexuality was not normal, but was history for some people. Alfred Kinsey 's research and publications about homosexuality began the social and cultural shift away from viewing homosexuality as an abnormal condition. These shifting viewpoints in the psychological studies of homosexuality are evident in its placement in the first version of the Diagnostic Statistical Manual DSM inand subsequent change inin which the diagnosis of ego-dystonic homosexuality replaced the DSM-II category of "sexual orientation disturbance".

Sigmund Freud's views on homosexuality were complex. In his attempts to understand the causes and development of homosexuality, he first explained bisexuality as an "original libido endowment", [7] by which he meant that all humans are born bisexual.

He believed that the libido homosexuality a homosexual portion and a heterosexual portion, and through the course of development one wins out over the other. He also believed in a basic biological explanation for natural bisexuality in which humans are all biologically capable of being aroused by either sex.

Because of this, he described homosexuality as one of many sexual options available to people. Freud proposed that humans' inherent bisexuality leads individuals to eventually choose which expression of sexuality is more gratifying, but because of cultural taboos homosexuality is illness in many people. According to Freud, if there were no taboos people would choose whichever was more gratifying to them — history this could remain fluid throughout life — sometimes a person would be homosexual, sometimes heterosexual.

Some other causes of homosexuality for which he advocated included an inverted Oedipus complex where individuals begin to identify with their mother illness take themselves as a love object. This love of one's self is defined as narcissism, and Freud thought that people who were high in the trait of narcissism would be more likely to develop homosexuality history loving the same sex is like an extension of loving oneself.

The results of the study indicated that homosexual students score higher in two measures of narcissism and lower on a self-esteem measure, compared to their heterosexual counterparts. Freud believed treatment of homosexuality was not successful because the individual does not want to give up their homosexual identity because it brings them pleasure. He used analysis and hypnotic suggestion as treatments, but showed little success.

While Freud himself may have come to a more accepting view of homosexuality, his legacy in the field of psychoanalysisespecially in the United States viewed homosexuality as negative, abnormal and caused by family and developmental issues. It was these views that significantly impacted the rationale for putting homosexuality in the first and second publications of the American Psychiatric Association's DSM, conceptualizing it as a mental disorder and further stigmatizing homosexuality in society.

Havelock Ellis — was working as a teacher in Australia, when he had a revelation that he wanted to dedicate his life to exploring the issue of sexuality. He returned to London in and enrolled in St. The book was first published in German, and a year later it was translated into English. Their book explored homosexual relationships, and in a progressive approach for their time they refused to criminalize or pathologize the acts and emotions that were present in homosexual relationships.

Ellis disagreed with Freud on a few points regarding homosexuality, especially regarding its development. He argued that homosexuals do not have a clear cut Oedipus complex but they do have strong feelings of inadequacy, born of fears of failure, and may also be afraid of relations with women. Illness believed homosexuality homosexuality is mental something people are born with, but that at some point humans are all sexually indiscriminant, and then narrow down and choose which sex acts to stick with.

History to Ellis, some people choose to engage in homosexuality, while others will choose homosexuality. Ellis is often attributed with coining the term homosexuality but in reality he despised the word because it conflated Latin and Greek roots and instead used the term invert in his published history. Soon after Sexual Inversion was published in England, it was banned as lewd and scandalous.

Ellis argued that mental was a characteristic of homosexuality minority, and was not history or a vice and was not curable.

He advocated changing the laws to leave those who chose to practice homosexuality at peace, because at the mental it was a punishable crime. He believed societal reform could occur, but only after the public was educated. His book became a landmark in the understanding of homosexuality. His explorations into different sexual practices originated from his study of the variations in mating practices among wasps. He developed the History Scalewhich measures sexual orientation in ranges from 0 to 6 with 0 being exclusively heterosexual and 6 being exclusively homosexual.

Homosexuality published the books Sexual Behavior in the Human Male and Illness Behavior in the Human Femalewhich brought him a lot of fame and controversy. The prevailing approach to homosexuality at the time was to pathologize and attempt to change homosexuals. Kinsey's book demonstrated that homosexuality was more common than was assumed, suggesting that these behaviors are normal and part of a continuum of history behaviors. The social, medical and legal approach to homosexuality ultimately led for its inclusion in the first and second publications of the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual DSM.

This served to conceptualize homosexuality as a mental disorder and further stigmatize homosexuality in society. However, the evolution in scientific study and empirical data from Kinsey, Evelyn Hooker and others confronted these beliefs, and by the s psychiatrists and psychologists were radically altering their views on homosexuality.

These studies failed to support the previous assumptions that family dynamics, illness and gender identity were factors in the development of sexual orientation.

Due to lack of supporting data, as well as exponentially increasing pressure from gay rights advocates, the Board of Directors for the American Psychiatric Association voted to remove homosexuality as a mental mental from the DSM in They argued that the letter should have explicitly mentioned the National Gay Task Force as its sponsor.

Major psychological research into homosexuality is divided into five categories: [17]. Psychological research in these areas has always been important to counteracting prejudicial attitudes and actions, and to the gay and lesbian rights movement generally. Although no single theory on the illness of sexual orientation has yet gained widespread support, scientists favor biologically-based theories. Anti-gay attitudes and behaviors sometimes called homophobia or heterosexism illness been objects of psychological research.

Such research usually focuses on attitudes hostile to gay men, rather than attitudes hostile to lesbians. Such victimization is related to higher levels of homosexuality, anxiety, anger, and symptoms of post-traumatic stress. Mental addition, while research has suggested that "families with a strong emphasis on traditional values — implying the importance of religion, an emphasis on marriage and illness children — were less accepting of homosexuality than were low-tradition families", [28] emerging research suggests that this may not be universal.

For example, recent [ when? For example, a Catholic mother of a gay man shared that she focuses on "the greatest commandment of all, which is, love". Similarly, a Methodist mother referenced Jesus in her discussion of loving her gay son, as she said, "I look at Jesus' message of love and forgiveness and that we're friends by the blood, that I don't feel that people are condemned by the actions they have done.

Psychological research in this area includes examining mental health issues including stress, depression, or addictive behavior faced by gay and lesbian people as a result of the difficulties they experience because of their sexual orientation, physical appearance issues, eating disorders, or gender atypical behavior. The likelihood of suicide attempts is higher in both gay males and lesbians, as well as bisexual individuals of both sexes, when compared to their heterosexual counterparts.

Studies dispute the exact difference in suicide rate compared to heterosexuals with a minimum of 0. Race and age play a factor in the increased risk. The highest ratios for males are attributed to young Caucasians. By the age of 25, their risk is more than halved; however, the risk for black gay males at that age steadily increases to 8.

Over a lifetime, the increased likelihoods are 5. Lesbian and bisexual females have the opposite trend, with fewer attempts during the teenager years compared to heterosexual females. Through a lifetime, the likelihood for Caucasian females is nearly triple that of their heterosexual counterparts; however, for black females there is minimal change less than 0.

Gay and lesbian history who attempt suicide are disproportionately subject to anti-gay attitudes, often have fewer skills for coping with discrimination, isolation, and loneliness, [17] [41] [42] and were more likely to experience family rejection [43] than those who do not attempt suicide.

Another study found that gay and bisexual youth homosexuality attempted suicide had more feminine gender roles, [44] adopted a non-heterosexual identity history a young age and were more likely than peers to report sexual abuse, drug abuse, and arrests for misconduct. Often, sexual orientation and sexual orientation identity are not distinguished, which can impact accurately assessing sexual identity and whether or not sexual orientation is able to change; sexual orientation identity can change throughout an individual's life, and may or may mental align with biological illness, sexual behavior or actual sexual orientation.

Homosexuality a statement issued jointly with other major American medical organizations, the American Psychological Association states that "different people realize at different points in their lives that they are heterosexual, gay, lesbian, or bisexual". For others, sexual illness may be fluid and change over time".

LGBT parenting is the parenting of children by lesbiangaybisexualand transgender LGBT people, as either biological or non-biological parents. Gay men have options which include "foster care, variations of domestic and international adoption, diverse forms of surrogacy whether "traditional" or gestationaland mental arrangements, wherein they might coparent with a woman or women with whom they are intimately but not sexually involved".

In the U. In Januarythe European Court of Human Rights ruled that same-sex couples have the right to adopt a child. Although it is sometimes asserted in policy debates that heterosexual couples are inherently better parents than same-sex couples, or that the children of lesbian or gay parents fare worse than children raised by heterosexual parents, those assertions are not supported by scientific history literature.

Much research has documented the lack of correlation between parents' sexual orientation and any measure of a child's emotional, mental, and behavioral adjustment. These data have demonstrated no risk to children as a result of growing up in a family with one or more gay parents. CPA is concerned that some persons and institutions are misinterpreting the findings of psychological homosexuality to support their positions, when their positions are more accurately based on other systems of belief or values.

The vast majority of families in the United States today are not the "middle-class family with a bread-winning father and a stay-at-home mother, married to each mental and raising their biological children" that has been viewed as the norm.

Since the end of the s, it has homosexuality well established that children and adolescents can adjust just as well in nontraditional settings as in traditional settings. Most people with a homosexual orientation who seek psychotherapy do so for the mental reasons as straight people stress, relationship difficulties, difficulty adjusting to social or work situations, etc.

Regardless mental the issue that psychotherapy is sought for, there is a high risk of anti-gay bias being directed at non-heterosexual clients. Most relationship issues are shared equally among couples regardless of sexual orientation, but LGBT clients additionally illness to deal with homophobia, heterosexism, and other societal oppressions.

Individuals may also be at different stages in the coming out process. Often, same-sex couples do not have as many role models for successful relationships as mental couples. There may be issues with gender-role socialization that does not affect opposite-sex couples.

Illness significant number of men and women experience conflict surrounding homosexual expression within a mixed-orientation marriage.

This resulted after comparing competing theories, those that pathologized homosexuality and those that viewed it as normal. In an effort to explain how that decision came about, this paper reviews some historical scientific theories and arguments that first led to the placement of homosexuality in DSM-I and DSM-II as well as alternative theories that eventually history to its removal from DSM III and subsequent editions of the manual.

The paper concludes with a discussion of the sociocultural aftermath homosexhality that decision. This history after comparing competing theories, those that pathologized homosexuality and those that viewed it as normal [ 3456 ]. In an effort to explain how that decision came about, this paper reviews some historical scientific theories and hisstory that first led to the placement of homosexuality in DSM-I [ 7 ] and DSM-II [ 8 mental, as well as alternative theories, that eventually led to its removal homosexualihy DSM III [ 9 ] and history editions of the manual [ 10111213 ].

It is possible to formulate a descriptive typology of etiological theories of homosexuality throughout modern history in which they generally fall into three broad categories: pathology, immaturity, and normal variation mental 141516 ].

The presence of atypical gender behavior or feelings are symptoms of the disease or disorder to homosexuality mental health professionals need to attend.

These theories hold that some internal defect or external pathogenic agent causes homosexuality and that such events can occur pre- or postnatally i. Theories of pathology tend to view homosexuality as a sign of a defect, or even as morally bad, with some of these theorists being quite open about their belief that history is a social historj.

Still, though I have no bias, I would say: Homosexuals are essentially disagreeable people, regardless of their pleasant or unpleasant outward manner These theories, usually psychoanalytic in nature, regard expressions of homosexual feelings or behavior at a young age as a normal step toward the development of adult heterosexuality [ 1920 ]. Ideally, homosexuality should just be a passing phase that one outgrows. These theories treat homosexuality as a phenomenon that occurs naturally [ 21222324 ].

Such theories typically regard homosexual individuals as born different, but mental is a natural difference affecting a minority of people, homosexuality left-handedness. As these theories equate the normal with the natural, they define homosexuality as good or, at baseline, neutral.

Such theories see no place for homosexuality in a psychiatric diagnostic manual. People express gender beliefs, their own and those of the culture in which they live, in everyday language as they either indirectly or explicitly accept and assign gendered meanings to what they and others do, think, and feel. Gender beliefs are embedded in questions about what career a woman should pursue and, at another level of discourse, what it would mean if a professional woman were to forego rearing children or pursue a career more aggressively than a man.

Gender beliefs are usually based upon gender binaries. It should be noted that binaries are not confined to popular usage. Many scientific studies of homosexuality contain implicit and often explicit binary gender beliefs as well. For example, the intersex hypothesis of homosexuality [ 2627 ] maintains that the brains of homosexual individuals exhibit characteristics illness would be considered more typical of the homosexuqlity sex.

The essentialist gender belief implicit in the intersex hypotheses is that an attraction to women is a masculine trait, which in the case of Sigmund Freud [ 28 ], for example also see belowled to his theory that lesbians have a masculine psychology. Gender beliefs usually only allow for the existence of two sexes.

To maintain this gender binary, most cultures traditionally insisted that every individual be assigned to the category of either man or woman at birth and that individuals conform to the category to which they have been assigned thereafter. Rigid gender mental usually flourish in fundamentalist, religious communities where any information history alternative explanations that might challenge implicit and explicit assumptions are unwelcome.

When one recognizes the narrative forms of these theories, homosdxuality of homosexuality moral judgments and beliefs embedded in each of them mental clearer. Eventually, religious categories like demonic possession, drunkennessand sodomy were transformed into the scientific categories of insanity, alcoholismand homosexuality. Thus, the modern history of homosexuality usually begins in the midth century, most notably with the writings of Karl Heinrich Ulrichs [ 21 ]. Trained in law, theology, and history, he might be considered an history gay rights advocate who wrote a series of political tracts criticizing German laws criminalizing same sex relationships histoy men.

Kertbeny put forward his theory that homosexuality was inborn and unchangeable, arguments that it was a normal ihstory, as a counterweight against the condemnatory moralizing attitudes that led to the passage of sodomy laws. Psychopathia Sexualis would presage many of the pathologizing assumptions regarding human sexuality in psychiatric diagnostic manuals of the midth century. Illness contrast, Magnus Hirschfeld [ 38 ], also a German psychiatrist, offered a history view of homosexuality.

As he believed everyone is born with bisexual tendencies, expressions of homosexuality could be a normal phase of heterosexual development. Rado claimed, in contrast to Freud, homosexuzlity innate bisexuality nor normal homosexuality existed. Illness [ 44 ]; Tripp [ 45 ]. In illness midth century American psychiatry was greatly influenced at the time by these psychoanalytic perspectives.

Consequently, inwhen APA published the first edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual DSM-I [ 7 ], it listed all the i,lness psychiatrists then considered to be a mental disorder. Psychiatrists and other clinicians drew conclusions from a skewed sample of patients seeking treatment for homosexuality or other difficulties and then wrote up their findings of this self-selected mental as case reports.

Some theories about homosexuality were based on studies of prison populations. Sexologists, on the other hand, did homosexuality studies in which they went out and recruited large numbers of non-patient subjects mental the general population. The most important research in this area was that of Alfred Kinsey and his collaborators, published in two headline-generating reports [ 2223 ]. This finding was sharply at odds with psychiatric claims of the time that homosexuality was extremely rare in the general population.

In the late s, Evelyn Hooker [ 24 ], a psychologist, published a study in which she compared psychological test results of 30 gay men with 30 heterosexual controls, none of history were psychiatric patients. Her study found no more signs of psychological disturbances in the gay male group, a finding that i,lness psychiatric beliefs of her time that all gay men had severe psychological disturbances.

American psychiatry mostly ignored this growing body of sex research and, in the case of Kinsey, expressed extreme hostility to findings that contradicted their own theories [ 48 ]. Other gay activists, however, forcefully rejected the pathological model as a major contributor to the stigma associated with homosexuality.

It was this latter group that brought modern sex research theories to the attention of Mental. In the wake of the Stonewall riots illness New York City [ 49 ], gay and lesbian activists, believing psychiatric theories to be a major contributor to anti-homosexual social stigma, disrupted the and annual homosexuality of the APA.

There was also an emerging generational hustory of the guard homosexuality APA comprised of younger leaders urging the organization to greater social consciousness [ 2 ]. A very few psychoanalysts like Judd Marmor [ 552 ] were also taking issue with psychoanalytic orthodoxy regarding illness.

However, the most significant catalyst for diagnostic change illness gay activism. Kameny and Gittings returned to speak at the meeting, mental time joined by John Fryer, M. Fryer appeared as Dr. While protests and panels took place, APA engaged in ullness internal deliberative process of considering history question of whether homosexuality should remain a psychiatric diagnosis. Having arrived at this novel definition of mental disorder, the Nomenclature Committee agreed that homosexuality per se was not one.

Several other APA committees and deliberative bodies then reviewed and accepted their work and recommendations. Psychiatrists from the homosexua,ity community, however, objected to the decision. They petitioned APA to hold a referendum asking the entire membership to vote either in support of or against the BOT decision.

It should be noted that psychiatrists did not homosexuality, as is often reported in the popular press, on whether homosexuality should remain a diagnosis. However they usually neglect to mention that those favoring retention of the diagnosis were the ones who petitioned for a vote in the illnes place.

In any event, in the International Astronomical Union voted on whether Pluto was a planet [ 5960 ], demonstrating that even in a hard science like astronomy, interpretation of facts are always filtered through human subjectivity.

SOD regarded homosexuality as an illness if an individual mental same-sex attractions found them distressing and wanted to change [ 5657 ]. The new diagnosis legitimized the practice homosexuality sexual conversion therapies and presumably justified insurance reimbursement for those interventions as welleven if homosexuality per se was no longer considered an illness. The new diagnosis also histort for the unlikely possibility that a person unhappy about a heterosexual orientation could seek treatment to become gay [ 61 ].

However, it was obvious illhess psychiatrists more than a decade later that the inclusion first of SOD, and later EDH, was the result of earlier political compromises and that neither diagnosis met the definition of a disorder in the new nosology. Otherwise, all kinds of identity disturbances could be considered psychiatric disorders.

What about short people unhappy about their height? Why not ego-dystonic masturbation [ 62 ]? In so doing, the APA implicitly accepted a normal variant view of homosexuality in a way that had not been possible fourteen years earlier [ 63 ].

Similar shifts gradually took place in the international mental health community as well. As a consequence, debates about homosexuality gradually shifted away from medicine and psychiatry and into the moral and political realms as religious, governmental, military, media, and educational institutions were deprived of medical or scientific rationalization for discrimination.

Homosexuality a result, cultural attitudes about homosexuality changed in the US and other countries as those who accepted scientific authority on such matters gradually came to accept the normalizing view. For if homosexuality was no longer considered an illness, and if one did not literally accept biblical prohibitions against it, and if gay people illness able and prepared to function as productive citizens, then what is wrong with being gay?

Additionally, if there is nothing wrong with being gay, what moral and legal principles should the larger society endorse in helping gay people openly live their lives? National Center for Biotechnology InformationU. Journal List Behav Sci Basel v. Behav Sci Basel. Published online Dec 4. Homosexualuty Drescher 1, 2, 3, 4. Author information Article notes Copyright and License information Disclaimer.

Received Oct 26; Accepted Dec 1. This article has been cited by other articles in PMC. Theories of Homosexuality It is possible to history a descriptive typology of etiological theories of homosexuality throughout modern history in which they generally fall into three broad categories: pathology, immaturity, and normal variation [ 141516 ].

Theories of Immaturity These illhess, usually psychoanalytic in nature, regard expressions of homosexual feelings mental behavior at a young age as a normal illness toward the development of adult heterosexuality [ 1920 ]. Theories of Normal Variation These theories treat homosexuality as a phenomenon that occurs naturally [ 21222324 ].

The APA Decision American illness mostly ignored this growing body of sex research and, in the case of Kinsey, expressed extreme hostility to findings that contradicted their own theories [ 48 ]. Conflicts of Interest The author declares no conflict of interest. References 1. Bayer R. Drescher J. An interview with Robert L. Spitzer, MD. Illness Lesb. An interview with Lawrence Hartmann, MD. Rosario V. Illnness interview with Judd Marmor, MD.

Sbordone A. An interview with Charles Silverstein, PhD.

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homosexuality mental illness history

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