A Gay Therapist
Dear Rabbi Twerski,
We are helping someone on www.guardureyes.com. He recently wrote me the following question, and I feel unqualified to take the responsibility to decide. Can you please help us?
Here is what he wrote:
I am currently seeing a sex therapist. I had a conversation with him today about his own sexual history and found out that he is gay. He doesn't believe that he has something to recover from. He believes its part of life. He only has one partner and doesnt cheat on him. He use to be a porn addict and recovered.
The reason that it bothers me to the point that I am thinking about having him recommend me to someone else, is that the whole reason that I am going for therapy is to help me work on myself so that I would not do porn again. Now porn might not be considered gilui arayos. However being gay is considered to be in that category. My point is that I am trying to strive to get rid of this addiction so that i wont end up doing gilui arayos, for example by cheating on my wife with another married woman. Because who knows where porn might lead me. So how can I work with, and keep on getting help from someone who disregards something that I am desperate to avoid ever happing to me in the future?
So do you think that despite these reasons I should still carry on with him? He really is helping me out, because I am for the first time really opening up of when and how this all started. That doesn't mean though, that someone else cant help me. He is very good in his field, he is a specialist for these problems. However should I ignore the core problem or not?
Rabbi Twerski replies:
Sorry I didn't respond earlier. I was en rout to Israel and did not have e-mail access until now.
I think that he should express his gratitude toward the therapist who has helped him, but should ask for a referral to another therapist.
We ask Rabbi Twerski again:Hi Rabbi Twerski, after his first e-mail to me, which I sent you below, he sent me another one the next day as follows:
I spoke again to my therapist today and he mentioned something that I should put in consideration while I make my decision. He said that while his other Orthodox patients that he has helped might have thought about the same questions that I had, regarding his sexually, they didn't bother asking him these questions - not that he would have minded answering them. But since they didn't ask them, perhaps like me, they wouldn't like the fact that the he might tell them that he is gay, which might make them stop coming. Where as by me, I did end up asking him that question, despite this notion. And the reason that he thinks that this may be is, whether partly subconsious or not, perhaps I felt that it might be a way out to stop attending therapy which otherwise might have helped me get rid of my problem for good. That part of me is scared to entirelly stop with this addiction.
Now, I still stand on about what i wrote you yesterday, however being that he claims that he has been gay ever since he can remember and that he is probably one of the best in the country in his field, might make me reconsider my objections to carry on. Maybe I can put aside our differences and respect him that he stopped acting on cybersex or cyberporn, and that he is faithfull with his partner?
In light of this second e-mail, does the Rav still feel he should change therapists? I am sorry for asking again...
Rabbi Twerski replies:
Inasmuch as this may be an halacha issue, I'm going to ask my posek.
A few days later he replies:
Regarding the gay therapist, as long as he does not discuss condoning homosexuality, he does not have to switch.
Boruch, moderator of the "Back to Basics" 12-Step phone group shares his thoughts about this issue: