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Kaye, H.E. (1975). Discussion of “The Effect of Group Therapy on Compulsive Homosexuality in Men and Women”. Am. J. Psychoanal., 35(4):313-316.

(1975). American Journal of Psychoanalysis, 35(4):313-316

Discussion of “The Effect of Group Therapy on Compulsive Homosexuality in Men and Women”

Harvey E. Kaye, M.D.

Since homosexuals have been beheaded, castrated, burned, imprisoned, disgraced, assaulted, blackmailed, and forced to suicide as a result of their supposed “crime against nature,” the advertising of one's sexual deviation has always appeared a gallant although rash enterprise. Shunned and ostracized as social pariahs, it is small wonder that so little statistically valid information has been gathered about the etiology and life styles of men and women whose sexual preferences are for those of their own sex.

But times and customs do change. Perhaps it began in 1935, with Freud's letter to an American mother who had requested his assistance for her homosexual son. In his now famous reply, Freud wrote, in part, “Homosexuality is assuredly no advantage, but it is nothing to be ashamed of, no vice, no degradation….” This was followed by statistical revelations, such as the Kinsey reports of the late 1940's and early 1950's which announced that 4 percent of the adult white American male population and 2 percent of white American women lead exclusively homosexual lives. If we add the 10 percent who have been exclusively homosexual for at least 3 years between their mid-teens and midfifties, this predominantly homosexual group would be large enough to populate Detroit, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Houston, Washington, D. C., and a substantial assortment of other smaller cities. While these numbers may not be as wide as the Shakespearean church door nor as deep as a well, they were enough to make an impact on the American social consciousness.

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