Reply to the given classmates posts

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Directions: In 200-300 words you must reply to both of the classmates post below. Be sure to label each reply so that I know which one you are addressing. Please note that "I like what you said," "That's a good point," and "I disagree with your point" do not count as complete replies in and of themselves. Rather, stating why you liked or disliked the comment, adding additional thoughts or ideas to the original point, and/or providing alternative ideas or thoughts when you disagree will count as a reply. You are expected to be courteous in any disagreement with a classmate. Thus, personal attacks or calling an idea "stupid" or another derogatory remarks are not acceptable, and your grade will reflect such behavior. The specific amount of points deducted will be left to the discretion of the instructor. Be sure to cite and reference all sources. Graduate quality work is expected to be free from spelling and grammatical errors, written according to the most current APA formatting guidelines, and adhere to the specific assignment instructions that are provided.

1. Shelby:

There is so much about the brain that we do not know. It has been proven that there is no gay gene. One study found that heterosexual men and homosexual women both had asymmetric brains with the right side being slightly larger than the left. They also found that the blood flow to the amygdala was similar in homosexual men and heterosexual women as well as, homosexual women and heterosexual men (Bateman, 2008).

My views on this topic are very different than many. I feel there are so many other issues to be concerned about than who someone likes or is attracted to. As I look at the world today there are bigger problems. With that being said, I will say that I learned a lot from these video segments. Themes that I saw throughout the segments were just because someone has same sex attractions does not mean they identify as gay or lesbian and that change is possible if one wants it bad enough, which seems to be true for any kind of change one must make and maintain in life. Through group counseling people are able to open up in a safe environment with peers who may be experiencing the same thing. They can also hear from their peers and have an understanding that they are not alone. As a counselor you/I need to be aware of our feelings on this topic and where we stand, our book says counselors need to be "aware of their own strengths and weaknesses in working with LGB clients" (Hays & Erford, 2014, p.152), if a client comes in with unwanted attractions and wants to change and as a counselor believe that's no possible then referral to another counselor may be necessary. Same if the client does not want to change and that is a conflict then a referral may be necessary. Just as our book states counselors need to be "aware of their own strengths and weaknesses in working with LGB clients

One thing I would ask Jeff and Wendy is how they facilitate groups with such a wide range of issues. If you have people in the same group with unwanted same sex attractions, porn addiction, co-dependence, and sexual abuse, how do you make the group relevant to everyone?

Jeff and Wendy have created a place that is accepting of individuals and their desire to change without putting people into boxes or soliciting those who do not want to change. They stated that people have to have a desire to change in order for change to take place. An article I found describing various therapies for same sex attractions included change-oriented therapy (COT) for unwanted same sex attractions. COT acknowledges that clients who have a desire and motivation to change are capable of doing so. In COT clients set and reevaluate their goals often always placing their religious values above their attractions (Rosik & Popper, 2014). I did not realize such a therapy existed.


Bateman, C. (2008). Brain similarities in gay men and straight women. Continuing Medical Information, 26(8).

Hays, D. G. & Erford, B. T. (2014). Developing multicultural counseling competence. Pearson Education Inc, Upper Saddle River, NJ

Rosik, C. H., & Popper, P. (2014). Clinical Approaches to Conflicts Between Religious Values and Same-Sex Attractions: Contrasting Gay-Affirmative, Sexual Identity, and Change-Oriented Models of Therapy. Counseling & Values, 59(2)

2. Melinda:

Jeff and Wendy started Great Hope Ministries in Harrisonburg, Virginia in 1998. They both had experienced brokenness and felt that God had laid it on their heart to help others due to what they had experienced. Jeff had issues with sexual addiction and pornography and Wendy had experienced sexual abuse and homosexual tendencies. Their ministry works with people who desire to get help from the unwanted same sex attractions. If they are unwanted desires and feelings, they believe that they can overcome it. If someone struggles with same sex feelings that does not necessarily made someone homosexual. To receive help they have to be desperate for change and feel stuck. They must want to make progress to start the healing progress and have a legitimate desire for change.

There are several themes within the presentations that can help us when working with Christians struggling with same sex attractions or someone from another religion. Jeff and Wendy discuss the desire to what to change and ways in which the church can help with this as well as how the ministry can help. Another theme is that we should be accepting and nonjudgmental of others. If we are Christians we should embrace everyone, love them and not judge them. We are all born sinners. The common issues surrounding same sex attractions are also discussed.

Jeff and Wendy explained that churches respond in three ways. Churches either are tolerant and embracing, judgment and condemning or are gracious and accepting. There has been lots of research on homosexuality and there is no biological connection to homosexuality according to the American Psychological Association. It is important to note that we are all born in sin and in need of transformation and with Jesus we can change.

There are some common causes or issues seen such as unwanted same sex attractions, emotional dependency, lack of bonding/connection with same sex parent, sexual abuse, feelings of being inadequate, ridicule, emotional and physical abuse, poor body image, identify, fears of opposite sex, and even shame. Wendy said her biggest issue was emotional dependency. Emotional dependency is when individuals rely on other people for emotional security and stability (Hoogstad, 2008). For example, they may become dependent on possessions or someone's look. Emotionally dependent individuals appear to lack an adequate sense of self or strong identity, and they perceive this as an emptiness or gap which they can't put into words and don't understand (Hoogstad, 2008). Homosexuality and same sex feelings is a complex issue and no two people are the same.

Churches need to do more to be involved and help those struggling. There are people everywhere dealing with these issues. Churches can help by being supportive, encouraging, trained to help assist people with this issues, and to know who to refer people too. As Christians, we need to be compassionate and offer redemptive hope.

People come in for help for various reasons such as pornography addiction, sexual addiction, sexual abuse, codependent relationships, people caring around a lot of self-hatred, hatred towards opposite sex and shame. The root of the problem and causes needed to be addressed for healing to fully take place.

I was surprised in how accepting they were and how encouraging they were that other Christians be accepting due to this being somewhat of a "hot" topic right. I do believe we have all sinned and we all make mistakes so people should not be judged. My husband's cousin is actually a transgender and unfortunately he has not always encountered such openness and acceptance. He was born female and is in the process of becoming a man. He also married a man, who was born female transitioning to male. I think because of him and all that he has gone through, I have learned a lot of and I consider myself very accepting and open to others beliefs and choices. It is not my place to judge them or anyone but to love them. I would like to know how Jeff and Wendy would help transgender individuals. Those transitioning experience a lot of identity confusion and shame. Would their program be helpful for them to help with those feelings and emotions?


Hoogstad, J. (2008). Choice theory and emotional dependency. International Journal of Reality Therapy, 28(1), 63-68. Retrieved from

Liberty University (2010). An Alternative Perspective on Gay Counseling & Ministry (Segments 1,2,3) [Video]. Retrieved from

Reference no: EM13877307

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