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Can These People Really Pray The Gay Away?

Last night's episode of MTV's documentary series True Life focused on young adults who had once identified with being gay but are now determined to be straight. Kevin had lived as an open gay man for a few years and had been in a long-term relationship, but decided that the pain associated with not being close to his deeply religious family wasn't worth the "gay lifestyle." Now he's operating under the mantra of, "What we want isn't always the best thing for us." To dedicate himself to being straight, Kevin reads the bible, and enlisted the help of his religious roommates, who help him pray to overcome his desires.

And because Kevin is still undeniably attracted to men, he goes to a therapist—who actually seems like he also "used to be" gay—who helps him deal with those urges. The thing that's weird — and, frankly, saddening — is that everyone in Kevin's life, from this friends, to his therapist, to his mentors from church, to his parents, seem so completely invested in helping Kevin be something he's not.

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DISCUSSION

As sad and bizarre as this is, is it so different from priests and nuns taking vows of celibacy to be closer to god? Perhaps there is much less social pressure to be celibate, but in the end, it's a personal sexual choice made by someone due to a variety of factors that someone not in their position will never understand. So whatever makes you happy dude. You can't force people to be self-aware, and who knows, maybe he IS self-aware and still thinks this decision is worth it.