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since June 19, 2001


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Understanding homophobia

Understanding homophobia.


Dale O'Leary

Pro-family advocates who confront the homosexual agenda are often accused of being "homophobes" or engaging in "hate speech." Since they know themselves to be innocent of these charges, they may fail to understand the origin of the accusations and therefore respond unproductively.

First, homosexuality is a development disorder which leads to disordered behaviors. In the vast majority of cases the temptation toward homosexuality is not freely chosen, but the result of unmet childhood needs.

Homosexual men overwhelmingly remember their fathers as hostile and/or detached or in some other ways as inadequate role models. Their mothers did not for various reasons sufficiently affirm their sons' masculine identity. For example, a mother may not have realized that in constantly disparaging her husband's behavior, she disparaged masculinity in her son's eyes. In communicated to her son the message, "I am so glad you are not a man like your father," she may have unintentionally given her son the message: "My mother will love me only if I am not a man." In addition -- and this appears to be crucial -- these boys did not develop healthy (non-sexual) relationships with their peers.

Growing up with unmet needs for masculine affirmation, these boys sought masculine love and were seduced into accepting sex with men as a substitute.

Unfortunately, the current debate over homosexuality recreates this destructive pattern:

  • The conservative pro-family advocates remind the adult homosexual man of his father — hostile and rejecting. 
  • The liberals are very like the mother, who -- rather than affirming her son's essential masculinity -- convinces him that he is different and that his father doesn't understand him. The liberals tell homosexual men that they aren't real men, but something different and that the conservatives hate them. 
  • In addition, homosexual man sees the organized opposition to gay rights legislation as a continuation of the rejection he experienced as a boy. 
  • In the face of all this he cries out in anger "You hate me" and in pain "Please accept me."

While the liberals think they are accepting the homosexuals with compassion, by making "homophobia" the issue they are forcing the homosexuals to relive the rejection they experienced as children.

Homosexual men need to be reconciled with their fathers, through the mediation of a mother who affirms their masculinity, and accepted into the fellowship of men.

The pro-family movement must dedicate itself to affecting this reconciliation. Pro-family women must be out in front, as the reconciling mothers who say to the homosexual men, "You are not something else, you are real men. Come with me and I will bring you to the father and to your brothers." Pro-family men must be willing to welcome homosexual men into fellowship and friendship.

The problems of homosexual women are somewhat different. Some homosexual women feel threatened by men in general and father-figures in particular. Some had mothers who were unable to protect them or to provide a positive model of womanhood. Pro-family women need to function as strong role models and to help the homosexual women reconcile with the father.

As I read through case histories, I am amazed how many people have come out of homosexuality because some one — often a woman — witnessed to them that the love of God could set them free.

All this begins with prayer, individual and corporate, for homosexual persons. We have to believe that God loves them and wants them to be the men and women he created them to be, before we can help them to see that healing and freedom are possible. Young people need to be recruited into this effort, encouraged to pray for their classmates, and taught that teasing and harassment can cause a vulnerable peer to become locked into homosexuality.

Ours must be a proactive response. We must make it clear that we love homosexual persons, more than those who "accept" them, because we want to see them set free and the "acceptors" want to keep them unfree.

Prayer for men and women suffering from homosexual temptations

Dear Father in heaven, we beg you to have mercy on the men and women who are suffering from homosexual temptations. None of us chooses our temptations, and only through Your grace can anyone resist temptation.

Forgive us Father for not being there for these men and women, for not offering them help and hope, for making them afraid to share their problems, for making them feel unloved, for not making the search for effective treatment and prevention a priority.

Help them loving Father to forgive those who have hurt them, to have the fortitude to face their problem and seek help, and to persevere in spite of temptations, Let them know that real freedom is possible, that You love them no matter what they have done. Help them to become the men and women You created them to be.

We pray for their parents, their families and their communities that as they struggle they will have the support of people who can speak the truth with love and who believe in their potential for recover.

We pray for the children that they will be protected from lies, half truths, and temptations and from those who would seduce or molest them. Dearest Father, look with special tenderness on all the children who have been molested, heal their pain, and make them whole again. In Jesus name we pray, Our Father...

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From Dale's Disk, prayer.rtf - Nov. 1999
Formatted in HTML 2000 11 03 —WHS