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2 conversion therapy films show how the treatment harms LGBTQ teens

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Conversion therapy films

2 conversion therapy films show how the treatment harms LGBTQ teens

Two conversion therapy films– “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” and “Boy Erased”– show how the gay conversion therapy treatment is hurting LGBTQ teens.

This is despite federal government banning gay conversion therapy on being used on LGBTQ teens.

Sadly, this treatment is still around and according to a study, it’s being supported by parents of teens.

Conversion therapy films: The Miseducation of Cameron Post

Desiree Akhavan’s coming-of-age drama “The Miseducation of Cameron Post” is adapted from Emily Danforth’s 2012 YA novel and won the Grand Jury Prize at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.

In this story, teen Cameron (played by Chloë Grace Moretz) is forced into a Christian gay conversion therapy camp after she’s caught making out with the prom queen, Coley Taylor (Quinn Shephard) during the high school prom.

At the camp, Dr. Lydia Marsh (Jennifer Ehle) and her “ex-gay” brother Reverend Rick (John Gallagher, Jr.) tells Cameron and the others that “there is no such thing as homosexuality.”

But even in the face of this silent emotional abuse, Cameron is steadfast in her personality, knowing that she’s just a perfectly normal teenager with natural, budding desires.

Fortunately, Cameron has support from fellow camp teen inmates like Jane Fonda (Sasha Lane) and Adam Red Eagle (Forrest Goodluck) as they wait to be released from their prison.

Check out the trailer of the movie below:

Conversion therapy films: Boy Erased

Meanwhile, Joel Edgerton’s “Boy Erased” takes off from Garrard Conley’s memoir and features Jared Eamons (Lucas Hedges) whose parents (played by Russell Crowe and Nicole Kidman) force him into a camp after he comes out to them.

This camp is run by Victor Sykes (also played by Joel Edgerton) who try to convince the teenagers stuck in the camp by their parents via emotionally manipulative curriculum of their “sin.”

Under his 9-to-5 care, Sykes forbids those placed under him not to talk to their parents or guardians about the so-called care. This leads to some suicides.

Unlike Cameron, Jared is still uncertain about himself and doesn’t have allies who can support him. As such, he has to reach out to his timid, religious mother who needs to lean into her motherly instincts.

Check out the trailer of the movie below:

Effect of gay conversion therapy on teens

Both films feature the harmful treatment being used on LGBTQ teens, as well as confirming current research: that more than half of LGBTQ teens experienced efforts to change their sexual orientation during adolescence.

The first of a kind survey was done on 245 white and Latino teens that identified as LGBT. Of this number, 53 percent cited efforts to change their sexual orientation during adolescence.

Meanwhile, 21 percent identified parents or caregivers at home as trying to change their orientation. 32 percent said parents, therapists, and religious leaders had tried to convert them.

“I wasn’t surprised there was a negative impact. What was really important in this study is that most people don’t realize [sexual orientation] change efforts start at home and often when children are young,” said study author Caitlin Ryan.

Ryan is the director of the Family Acceptance Project, a research, intervention, education and policy effort at San Francisco State University.

“We found that when efforts to change a young person’s identity occurred in adolescence, it had an impact that followed them into young adulthood,” Ryan said.

“Two things that were surprising to see was that negative impact included limiting their income as a young adult and restricting their educational attainment,” she added.

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