Summary findings for our Mormon/LGBT Research

Journal of Counseling PsychologySexual Orientation Change Efforts among Current or Former LDS Church Members

  • Close to 70% of LGBT Mormons attempt to change their sexual orientation.  Even though we usually think of psychotherapy as the main way of attempting change, the two most common and damaging methods of attempting change are: 1) personal righteousness (e.g., prayer, scripture reading, fasting, temple attending, service) and 2) speaking with a bishop/church leader.
  • SSA does not go away, rarely changes, and most attempts at change (especially religious ones) are reported to be harmful and/or not helpful.  This means that for many LGBT Mormons, encouragement to pray, read the scriptures, stay close to the church, and draw closer to Christ is actually toxic advice.

Journal of Gay & Lesbian Mental HealthPsychosocial Correlates of Religious Approaches to Same-Sex Attraction: A Mormon Perspective

  • LDS Church Activity/Status
    • >70% of LGBT Mormons leave the LDS church.
    • Excommunication or resigning one’s membership is associated with the highest quality of life/self esteem and lowest depression/identity distress for LGBT Mormons.
    • In general, LDS church activity is associated with the lowest quality of life/self esteem and highest depression/sexual identity distress of all study participants (re: church status).
  • Relationship Status
    • Mixed-Orientation Marriage: Up to 70% of mixed-orientation marriages end in divorce.  Those that survive report to be bisexual, and also report very low quality of life ratings (lower than people who report having lupus).
    • Celibacy: Celibacy is reported to have even worse quality of life ratings than mixed-orientation marriage.
    • Same-sex Marriage: Same-sex marriages report the highest quality of life and self esteem, and the lowest rates of depression, sexual identity distress.

 

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