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PeterG
06-08-2011, 04:57 PM
My comment about them damaging their children reflected not my personal opinion but rather some of the comments on the other FSU thread.

My mistake. Thank you for clarifying. :respec:


You don't have to hide a child's biological sex from the world to do that.

Agreed. However, if you want the world to be a better one than the world Kirk Murphy experienced, you need to be part of making changes. Currently, our world has issues that need to be addressed around gender identity. Someone has to stand up and do something to bring the issue to people's attentions. Someone heroic, IMHO. :)


Children can be raised in a perfectly healthy and natural way to do anything they want regardless of gender stereotypes without the publicity stunt that family is pulling.

Your use of the words "publicity stunt" has a very judgemental tone, in my opinion. These parents are not doing this to win free diapers for a year. They don't want their own reality TV show. What they want is to see positive changes in the world so that their children have better lives.

Imagine what our world would be like if more parents took similar stands to improve things for their children... :)

Cheylana
06-08-2011, 05:22 PM
Wow, this article is at once horrifying and depressing :(

michiruwater
06-08-2011, 05:45 PM
I blame the parents more than the therapy, myself. I didn't see any indication that Rekers suggested that negative discouragement consisted of beating the child until he had welts all over his back and buttocks. The therapy was clearly horrible and came from a dark place, but what the parents did was, IMO, much more horrifying and damaging. It may have resulted from the therapy, but the parents were the ones who decided to put him in therapy in the first place and then took it way too far.

PeterG
06-08-2011, 05:53 PM
They're refusing to tell people the child's SEX. Sex is a biological fact, no matter what the brain believes or even what body parts you chop off or sew on or what clothes you wear.

True, but as a co-worker, do you need to know if I have a penis or a vagina? If I am your server at a restaurant, is knowing my gender a requirement for me to serve you?

Why does anyone need to know the gender of a child (or of an adult, for that matter)? Why can't we treat people as people instead of "owner of a penis/vagina"?


... don't avoid telling them or anyone else if they're male or female. That is going leave them screwed up and hopelessly confused.

:lol: I don't think a child will be confused if a parent doesn't tell them if they are male or female. I am sure these parents have read books to all of their children about the human body, so each child will know very quickly if they are male or female.

And what purpose does it serve for strangers to know if one's child is male or female? So they can buy the girl a pink dress and the boy a toy gun? :confused:

NancyNC
06-08-2011, 06:12 PM
Why can't we treat people as people instead of "owner of a penis/vagina"?

:respec:

PDilemma
06-08-2011, 06:16 PM
Whether we like it or not, males and females are biologically different. For me and most post-pubescent females to not be visibly female would require surgical intervention. I could wear men's clothes, cut my hair short and try to lower my speaking voice, but without my (even below average sized) boobs being removed, there is still a tell-tale sign that I am female.

I don't really like the implication that the fact that anyone is visibly biologically female is a fault of society that must be rectified. The implication of that notion is that there is something wrong with being biologically female and with having stereotypically feminine interests and traits and that brings us right back to the issue in the article that started this thread.

PeterG
06-08-2011, 06:39 PM
Whether we like it or not, males and females are biologically different.

Agreed. Boys have peepees and girls have vajayjays.


For me and most post-pubescent females to not be visibly female would require surgical intervention. I could wear men's clothes, cut my hair short and try to lower my speaking voice, but without my (even below average sized) boobs being removed, there is still a tell-tale sign that I am female.

:confused:

Why would you (or anyone else) want to do this?


I don't really like the implication that the fact that anyone is visibly biologically female is a fault of society that must be rectified. The implication of that notion is that there is something wrong with being biologically female and with having stereotypically feminine interests and traits and that brings us right back to the issue in the article that started this thread.

:huh:

Which implication are you referring to?

Indra486
06-08-2011, 07:07 PM
Trying to raise a "genderless" child simply means that you don't impose beliefs, values and myths about gender on your child. It's not damaging, it's liberating, because it gives children the freedom to be who they really are and a better chance to become well-rounded people. Girls can play with trucks if they like and boys can play with dolls. You can play ball with your daughters and your sons, and make cookies with your daughters and your sons. Good skills are learned in the process for both.

Society genders children enough of its own and does a fair bit of damage in the process. Parents can helps their kids to deal with that or make it even harder.

I'm also bothered by the notion that a boy who likes to play with dolls is going to grow up gay. And by the idea that effeminate = gay. There are plenty of heterosexual men with qualities deemed effeminate and plenty of gay men with qualities deemed macho. Those labels in themselves are damaging.

:respec::respec::respec:

It reminds me of the J.Crew episode of pink nail polish or the criticisms that the Jolie-Pitt couple gets for letting Shiloh wear boy clothes. You cannot foresee how a child will grow up to be based on the things they do as children. That's just it. They're children who are learning about the world and people do change over the course of their lives.

overedge
06-08-2011, 07:16 PM
How dreadful and tragic.
The parents are as much to blame as the "Doctor" for condoning and participating in this "therapy" --- never mind their responsibility for their own attitudes and actions.

I hope that this report helps to end this sort of "behavior modification"/sexual identity alternation "therapy" forever.

The only positive thing I could think about the article is that although Reker managed to do what he did at the time with government funding at a university, under current ethical review procedures - which a project like this would have to go through to get funding or to be conducted at a university - he would never be able to do this "research" or get it funded because it would never be approved.

That doesn't mean that rogue "therapists" like him couldn't figure out some other way to do what they wanted to do, outside the university or with other funding. But at least now there are way better checks and balances on this sort of abuse passing as "research" than there were in the past.

skatesindreams
06-08-2011, 08:58 PM
What about these "therapists" who pander continually to religious groups and claim to be able to "change" the sexual orientation of someone?
Some well-known figures - like ( Rev.) Rex Haggard - and others - claim "healings".

IMO, these people and their claims damage the progress made toward scientific discovery, understanding and tolerance about sexual orientation and gender issues.

overedge
06-08-2011, 09:06 PM
What about these "therapists" who pander continually to religious groups and claim to be able to "change" the sexual orientation of someone?
Some well-known figures - like ( Rev.) Rex Haggard - and others - claim "healings".

IMO, these people and their claims damage the progress made toward scientific discovery, understanding and tolerance about sexual orientation and gender issues.

I totally agree, but those people are all operating on their own for the most part (some of the "therapists" may have jobs at legitimate medical institutions or clinics). What I was getting at was that Reker's work was done at a university and funded by the government, and thanks to better ethical review he would probably not be able to get that kind of support or legitimacy now.

PDilemma
06-08-2011, 10:18 PM
Why would you (or anyone else) want to do this?



:huh:

Which implication are you referring to?

You don't want a restaurant server's sex to be visible to me or anyone else with your false equivalency that observing masculine or feminine traits that emerge physically after puberty is somehow a perverted interest in another person's sexual organs. How do we accomplish that other than hiding the post pubescent physical attributes of biological sex?

Whenever groups start trying to do that, inevitably it seems to be the physical attributes of females that are considered problematic. Example:

http://worldpulse.com/magazine/articles/cameroon-mama-hates-my-sprouting-breasts?page=0,1

Just as in terms of stereotypical gender behavior, the deep seated fear of boys playing with "girls" toys demonstrates. It is that which is considered female --whether it is the nonnegotiable physical traits or those activities and interests that society has classified as feminine--that is deemed objectionable for males or for everyone.

Gazpacho
06-08-2011, 10:24 PM
Several posters have blamed Kirk Murphy's mother for allowing her son to be abused in this manner. What about his father? What man beats his child hard enough to raise welts on his body just because some psychologist says so? And not to make any excuses for George Rekers, but did he realize at the time how severely Kirk's father was beating him for racking up red chips? Whoops, I didn't catch that it was the father who did the beatings. Since he isn't mentioned elsewhere in the story, I didn't know if he was in the picture. But now that I know, of course I'm just as upset at him.


That's what happens when therapy isn't regulated properly. I just can't understand why psychologists aren't regulated properly like doctors. Clearly, self-regulation has proven to be insufficient.Therapists are regulated in most, perhaps all, states. For instance, Dr. Phil was stripped of his professional license for having a sexual relationship with a patient. That didn't stop him from making millions off providing questionable advice, but it did prevent him from having a private practice.

I don't know the criteria for revoking a therapist's license. It probably varies by state, and I don't know if any states outlaw therapists who promote this kind of abuse. But licensing is done by state, and the Reker followers are probably more likely to live in states with a large anti-homosexual population and hence a state licensing board that wouldn't outlaw such practices.

In the Murphy case, this was a university research study. Today all studies need ethics board approval.


What about these "therapists" who pander continually to religious groups and claim to be able to "change" the sexual orientation of someone?
Some well-known figures - like ( Rev.) Rex Haggard - and others - claim "healings".Good point. Licensing mostly concerns insurance payment qualification and wording. States may prohibit an unlicensed person from calling themselves and advertising themselves as a therapist or a psychologist. But it doesn't prevent someone from performing Reker's therapies as long as they don't officially call it therapy.

Japanfan
06-08-2011, 11:12 PM
You don't have to hide a child's biological sex from the world to do that.


I'm not sure if this statement and the posts that followed in response to it were spurred by my point about the 'genderless' child. It seemed not, but if it was I must clarify that I said nothing about hiding a child's biological sex.

Gender and sex are not the same thing. Your biological sex is what you are born with, whereas gender is an interpretation of that sex - the values, roles, and behaviours which are associated with it and can be imposed on it. Pink and dolls for little girls and blue and toy cars for little boys is one of the simplest examples - there is nothing biological about the association. And countless other associations pile up as children grow up, creating expectations and viewpoints regarding gender that can be limiting and damaging.

Interpretations of gender become myths of gender, which deeply informs and guides how we live and how we perceive men and women. Many such myths are falsely presented and accepted as biologically based. And they are so deeply encoded in the collective conscious that people don't stand back and question the research, which is often biased and flawed. So they continue to flourish.



Why can't we treat people as people instead of "owner of a penis/vagina"?

Unfortunately we are so heavily socialized to view people in terms of their gender that gender often comes before personhood - actions, behaviours and thoughts are attributed to whether a person is male or female.

skateboy
06-09-2011, 12:04 AM
Whoops, I didn't catch that it was the father who did the beatings. Since he isn't mentioned elsewhere in the story, I didn't know if he was in the picture. But now that I know, of course I'm just as upset at him.

I got the feeling that the father may have passed away, since there was no current mention of him (although I may be wrong). But yes, the father is absolutely to blame here--maybe even primarily to blame.