Brothers on a Road Less Traveled

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Brothers on a Road Less Traveled, formerly known as People Can Change (PCC),[1] is an American nonprofit organization supporting men wishing to reduce or eliminate their homosexual desires.[2] The organization hosts weekend retreats for these men.[3] Their stated mission is "to offer other men who seek similar transformation a pathway of healing, by providing information, training, coaching and support."[3] PCC is also a signatory member of Positive Alternatives to Homosexuality (PATH), a coalition of ex-gay organizations seeking to support those with unwanted homosexual desires.[4]

The organization was founded in 2000 by Rich Wyler, based on his own experience with conversion therapy.[5] In an interview with Warren Olney IV, Wyler explains that the group's purpose is to help men find peace and fulfillment in their lives. While he states that may mean living as gay for some men, he claims others have found fulfillment in celibacy or in a heterosexual relationship.[6] The group focuses on resolving the "root problems" that cause "homosexual symptoms"[7] including fear of men, touch deprivation, a distant father and overbearing mother, sexual abuse,[8] and childhood emotional wounds.[9][10][11] Their website stated in 2001 that group members "no longer desire to have sex with other men" or "to be involved with them sexually or romantically" and that they are "sexually attracted to women ... much more so than we used to be."[12] In 2003 the website stated that a "lessening and even eliminating homosexual desires while developing and fostering heterosexual attractions is definitely possible," but "requires deep emotional and spiritual work and personal growth, often over a period of months and even years."[13]

Weekend retreats[edit]

Journey Into Manhood is an experiential weekend put on by the organization that takes place in the US, UK, Poland, and Israel since it began in January 2002.[14] It uses a variety of techniques, including visualizations, group sharing and emotional-release, based on the creators' personal experience and time with reparative therapy, but makes clear that the group is non-professional peer counseling.[15] The concepts used in this retreat were presented at the 2003 NARTH Conference on Homosexuality: Current Trends in Research and Therapy.[16] The retreat includes a time when men were allowed to cuddle with each other in what is called "golden father and son holding".[17]

Association with North Star[edit]

Although North Star, a group for believing Mormons, does not officially endorse any therapy, two cofounders of North Star,[18] Ty Mansfield (President as of 2015) and Jeff Bennion (Chair of the Board of Directors as of 2015),[19][20] were heavily involved[21] in the for-profit[22] reparative therapy organization People Can Change (PCC) and its Journey Into Manhood (JiM) and Journey Beyond (JB) weekends,[23][24] and have allowed and participated in PCC's promotions in North Star online groups, pages,[25][26][27] and its yearly conferences.[28] Rich Wyler, the founder of PCC (now called Brother's Road) is also Mormon.[29] Michael Ferguson (now a former Mormon) stated that North Star became a clearinghouse for vetting and recruiting men into reparative therapy because of the leadership's involvement.[30] Many prominent members and leaders of North Star (such as those featured in TLC's "My Husband's Not Gay"[31]) had participated in PCC events,[32][33][34][35][36] and board members Preston Dahlgreen and Jeff Bennion defended the Jewish reparative therapy organization JONAH in the 2015 court case Ferguson v. JONAH.[37][38][39] After the trial Mansfield stated that they no longer give endorsements of PCC online or at conferences.[40]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.brothersroad.org/namechange/
  2. ^ PEOPLE CAN CHANGE INC - NonProfit/Tax Exempt Organization
  3. ^ a b "People Can Change homepage". Archived from the original on 2007-09-26. Retrieved 2007-10-01. 
  4. ^ "Diverse Coalition Forms to Support People Seeking 'Non-Gay' Alternatives to Unwanted Homosexuality". Marketwire. July 2003. 
  5. ^ Bulkeley, Deborah (2004-08-13). "Ex-gay man says change possible: But reparative therapy remains controversial". Deseret Morning News. Retrieved 2007-10-01. 
  6. ^ Olney, Warren To Be or Not to Be...Gay To the Point, KCRW, March 3, 2007
  7. ^ "Root Problems, Homosexual Symptoms". peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2001-03-12. 
  8. ^ "Perceptions Among Men With Unwanted Same-Sex Attractions (SSA) of the Factors Contributing to the Development of Their Homosexual Feelings" (PDF). peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2013-04-08. 
  9. ^ "Root Causes, Homosexual Consequences". peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2003-06-16. 
  10. ^ "Our Solution: What Worked for Us". peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2001-03-12. 
  11. ^ "Root Causes, Homosexual Consequences: Survey on Root Causes". peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2013-06-27. 
  12. ^ "Is Change Really Possible? Why Change? How Much Change?". peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2001-03-12. 
  13. ^ "Introduction". peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2003-06-06. 
  14. ^ People Can Change - An alternative, healing response to unwanted homosexual desires
  15. ^ "Journey Into Manhood: A Healing Weekend Hosted by People Can Change". NARTH. 2006-04-20. Archived from the original on 2008-01-21. Retrieved 2007-10-01. 
  16. ^ Matheson, David A LPC, Four Principles of Growth NARTH Conference on Homosexuality: Current Trends in Research and Therapy. 2003
  17. ^ "Guidelines for Golden Father & Son Holding" (PDF). peoplecanchange.com. People Can Change. Archived from the original on 2016-06-15. 
  18. ^ "Who We Are". northstarlds.org. North Star International. Archived from the original on 6 October 2007. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  19. ^ Bennion, Jeff. "North Star's New Leadership Structure is Taking Us to the Next Level". northstarlds.org. North Star International. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  20. ^ "Leadership Team". northstarlds.org. North Star International. Archived from the original on 2015-04-18. 
  21. ^ "Nightline: Journey Into Manhood". ABC News. 8 Nov 2010. Retrieved 27 March 2017.  You can see Mansfield and Bennion featured in this ABC Nightline report on Journey Into Manhood as well as North Star Board of Directors member Pret Dahlgren
  22. ^ Potok, Mark; Schlatter, Evelyn. "Quacks: 'Conversion Therapists,' the Anti-LGBT Right, and the Demonization of Homosexuality" (PDF). splcenter.org. Southern Poverty Law Center. Retrieved 26 March 2017. 
  23. ^ Wolfe, Sam (29 August 2015). "Gay-conversion therapy should be exposed for what it is, consumer fraud". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 26 March 2017. 
  24. ^ "Journey Into Manhood Weekend by People Can Change". brothersroad.org. Brothers Road (formerly People Can Change). Retrieved 26 March 2017.  See time 2:50 of the video linked under "Journey Into Manhood Experiential Weekend"
  25. ^ Mansfield, Ty. "Becoming Dis-illusioned about "Reparative Therapy" and "Sexual Reorientation"—Part 1". ldslights.org. North Star International. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  26. ^ "Calendar". northstarlds.org. North Star International. Archived from the original on 11 October 2007. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  27. ^ Bennion, Jeff. "Personal thoughts on the Journey Into Manhood Weekend". ldslights.org. North Star International. Retrieved 26 March 2017. 
  28. ^ Dark, Stephen (4 June 2014). "Dialogue and Dogma". Copperfield Publishing Inc. Salt Lake City Weekly. Retrieved 26 March 2017. 
  29. ^ Stack, Peggy Fletcher (29 September 2015). "Why Do Some Gay Mormons Still Seek Out Conversion Therapy?". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 30 March 2017. 
  30. ^ Dobner, Jennifer (27 September 2017). "Ex-Utahn's journey from Mormon counseling to 'abusive' reparative therapy and, ultimately, a happy gay marriage". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  31. ^ "7 members of the North Star community to be featured in TLC special, "My Husband's Not Gay"". ldslights.org. North Star International. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  32. ^ Moore, Tyler. "Clarifying North Star's Position on Changing Orientation". northstarlds.org. North Star International. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  33. ^ Pierce, Scott D. (8 January 2015). "Utahns in 'My Husband's Not Gay' promote discredited 'conversion therapy'". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  34. ^ Collman, Ashley (11 January 2015). "Three stars of controversial show 'My Husband's Not Gay' are spokesmen for discredited 'conversion therapy'". Daily Mail. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  35. ^ Ford, Zack. "Quick Verdict In The Case Against Ex-Gay Therapy". thinkprogress.org. ThinkProgress. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  36. ^ Bensen, Wayne. "TLC Show was Part of Cynical 'Ex-Gay' Rebranding Campaign". truthwinsout.org. Truth Wins Out. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  37. ^ Wolfe, Sam (29 August 2015). "Gay-conversion therapy should be exposed for what it is, consumer fraud". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 26 March 2017. 
  38. ^ Potok, Mark; Schlatter, Evelyn. "Quacks: 'Conversion Therapists,' the Anti-LGBT Right, and the Demonization of Homosexuality" (PDF). splcenter.org. Southern Poverty Law Center. Retrieved 26 March 2017. 
  39. ^ "Ferguson v. JONAH – Unofficial Trial Transcripts". eqcf.org. Equality Case Files. Retrieved 27 March 2017. 
  40. ^ Stack, Peggy Fletcher (27 September 2015). "Conversion therapies don't work, experts say, so why do gay Mormons still seek them out?". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 26 March 2017. 

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