Journalist Patrick Strudwick's undercover investigation into gay conversion therapy in the UK eventually led to the British Medical Association condemning the practice. In his new essay, he describes his terrifying experience, how the therapy made him doubt himself, and why he's an advocate against conversion therapy:
There was a single, terrible moment, while investigating conversion therapy, that changed me. I did not know that it would alter also the course of the conversion therapy movement in Britain, a movement hinged on a chilling idea: that gay people can be cured.
It was a few weeks into my investigation in the summer of 2009. I was in my living room, pacing, on the phone to one of the two people attempting to make me heterosexual. The therapist’s name was Lesley Pilkington, and this was our second session. The first had been in her plush, suburban home, near Amersham, northwest of London. A recording device was taped to my stomach, under my shirt, as she asked me if I had been sexually abused. She was trying to find out what childhood trauma had “triggered” my homosexuality, because those who consider being gay a sickness believe it is formed by trauma. I said no. Read More