Home Forums Ex-gay/reparative/conversion therapy survivor stories Electronic Shock Therapy Didn't Change Ron

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  • Ron Smith
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    Electronic Shock Therapy Didn’t Change Ron

    A psychiatrist, Dr L Knott who was then President of the Baptist Church promised that if I went through electronic shock therapy, it would make me straight. If you were gay you were mentally ill and I saw him for 16 years.

    They put me in a closed booth without any controls and placed a wire ring on my private parts that measured temperature changes and showed me about 1000 pictures of men and 1000 pictures of women over a few days. When my body temperature rose when I saw the men, which is natural for me, they delivered high voltages of electricity through wires that were also attached to punish me for being gay and to try to make me straight. It was horrific and it didn’t work. When I returned and told Dr Knott what had occurred he just laughed and said, (I quote verbatim) “That would have really hurt you eh!”

    Each counselling session was very similar to those in exgay programs.

    The doctor in Sydney who did the electronic shock therapy said to me later that those tests proved medically that being gay is not a choice that I am gay and after discussions he said it proved I was born gay. Imagine how I felt when I learned that the entire medical profession declassified homosexuality as an illness 46 years ago this year, and that period covered the entire 16 years I saw Dr Knott and paid him a fortune. Not happy. I have since visited his grave and I forgave him for all the damage he did to me. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done but essential if I was going to move forward with my life.

    Those sessions led me to intensely hate and loath myself for being gay. This caused enormous damage. When under stress, the adrenaline in your heart goes up and the acid in your oesophagus goes up to compensate. There is a direct chemical link between those two. I have had two lots of partial fundoplication surgery on my oesophagus to try to repair that damage. It is major surgery. Why would anyone choose to go through all that? It is often still bad and I need to take high levels of medication to control the pain.

    My wife and I are still married after 48 years. She has had MS for 23 years and I have been her carer. She has been full hoist for many years. But when God has created you gay, as I have been, it is sin to enter a heterosexual marriage because it is all based on lies. It is extremely stressful, and it doesn’t change a thing. My biggest mistake was to adopt other people’s unbiblical views about homosexuality as my view of myself. Not anymore.

    I was an ordained Baptist Minister and missionary, but several Baptist Churches have told me I am not welcome to even attend the church, just because I am gay. I am not sexually active and I don’t have a boyfriend. I left the program because Dr Knott retired and also because it didn’t work. But it wasn’t until my 60s that I finally accepted myself as gay and came out when I was seeing the psychologist, Paul Martin.

    Staying in the closet was like trying to hold a large ball under water for years. It was exhausting. When I came out, I let go of that large ball and the relief was enormous. I now have many gay friends who mean a great deal to me.

    Loving committed monogamous gay marriage for life is not condemned in the Bible anywhere. I strongly support it. I know many couples who the Lord has created gay and placed within each of their hearts and incredibly deep love for each other. There is not a doubt it is something wonderful that God has done. I strongly support them and I’m thrilled for them.

    In relation to some church’s negative views of homosexuality, we can either fight or flight. These days I “flight” far more often than I fight.

    It is proven that some of over 1500 animal species have gay relationships. God has done that.

    The entire medical profession declassified homosexuality as an illness 46 years ago this year. Nothing is wrong. Nothing needs to be fixed or cured. Doctors have also warned the exgay programs can cause enormous damage as they did to me.

    God creates some people gay too and He does a fantastic job of it. Let’s accept ourselves for who we are, be extremely proud of it and let’s live authentic lives without pretending to be someone we are not.

    Ron Smith (Rev) – Former Baptist Pastor and returned missionary, now retired.

    Post count: 10

    Ron…..yours is a very very powerful story. I know life hasn’t been easy for you. Some of us think our lives have been challenging but when we read your story …it put things into perspective. You are totally admired for the commmitment you’ve had to your wife over all these years. I admire you.

    Post count: 18

    Hi Ron

    I have heard people say
    Life is a Stage

    In some degree it is when your bleeding inside continually.
    But you still put on that happy happy persona and life is a big fat cherry pie.

    But it ain’t as our family knows

    But Ron we are real people and we are not hiding under a false personality

    So is Life a stage to some degree yes but with us
    What you see is what you get, lump it or leave it

    Bless and take care real good care.

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