After hearing about the big success that the indie film The Miseducation of Cameron Post starring Chloë Grace Moretz did at Sundance, we may wonder what the statistics are concerning Conversation Therapy today. Sadly, it seems the influence is still pretty high.
Thankfully for that film, the creative team was adamant about having advisors who had gone through similar programs there so that they can stay as accurate as possible, but the numbers concerning conversion therapy are scarier than fiction.
According to the Williams Institute at UCLA, about 20,000 LGBTQ teenagers between the ages of 13 and 17 will be subject to some sort of conversion therapy treatment from licensed healthcare professionals before they become 18. Even worse, an additional 57,000 will go through therapy by unlicensed religious personnel.
The stats don’t stop there however, The report also says that 700,000 adults have gone through treatment like this and 350,000 were teens at the time of it happening.
That said, there is some upside to it all. As of this January (2018), nine states, the US capital (Washington D.C.), and 32 cities have banned conversion therapy for minors.
This is because most research has found conversion therapy to be harmful to youth. It can cause depression, anxiety, and suicidal thoughts.
“The overwhelming scientific evidence demonstrates that conversion therapy, especially when it is practiced on young people, is neither medically nor ethically appropriate and can cause substantial harm,” said Obama advisor Valerie Jarrett in 2015.
As good as it is to hear that so many areas have banned the practice, there are still many more that are practicing both in the open and in secret. There’s still more fighting to do.