Sigmund Freud is a controversial figure. Beside his theories of the unconscious and Oedipus’s complex, many people don’t know that he played a large role in how Christian perceived homosexuality in the 1980s and 1990s.
Recently, Obama announced his support for national ban on “gay conversion therapies”, but not a lot of Christians objected. Why is it worth mentioning? Because, in the 1980s and 1990s, lots of Christians advocated therapy to convert people into their straight sexual orientation. Why? Because they believed that homosexuality is more of a disease than a sin thanks to Freud. In the early 1900s, Freud claimed that everyone was born bisexual. Thus, one’s childhood determined one’s sexuality, so he said. However, as time progressed, it is empirically proven that his theory is incorrect based on the amount of therapies attempting to convert one’s sexual orientation. On one hand, this explains why many Christians didn’t say anything when Obama announced the ban of these therapies. On the other hand, this also speaks about Freud’s credibility in other facets of Freud’s theories.
From what I learned in my psychology classes, Freud’s theories are all based on his own “make-up” data and interpretations. For those who believed and practiced his theories, they brought illness upon others. For examples, in the 1990s, Holly Ramona, a patient who was treated through counselling for bulimia, was convinced by her therapist that her current condition happened because of her childhood sexual abuse. Specifically, she recalled under the therapists’ guidance and sodium amytal, known as a “truth serum”, that her father raped her between the ages of 5 and 8. Gary Ramona, her father, was destroyed because of these accusations, but he denied that he abused his daughter. After a series of appeals, it was determined that the psychiatrist’s work was untrustworthy and unreliable because of Holly’s distorted memory, so Gary was awarded $475,000 in damages. The psychiatrist was pleaded guilty via malpractice Thus, this is only one of a few examples showing how Freud’s theories did more harm than good due to its unscientific nature. As more malpractice appears, we can see why scientific people appreciate Freud’s theories for the basis of the unconscious more than anything else. Thus, one should not take Freud’s theories too seriously these days, and the Christian community did just that in response to the ban of “gay conversion therapies”.