‘It doesn’t leave you’: the toxic toll of LGBTQ conversion therapy

Netflix documentary Pray Away, exec-produced by Ryan Murphy, traces the history of conversion therapy with regretful leaders of the “ex-gay” movementJulie Rodgers was 16 years old when her mother introduced her to Ricky Chelette, the “singles minister” at a Baptist church in Arlington, Texas, who coached LGBTQ+ youth on how to “change” their sexuality.

The high school junior had recently come out to her parents; Chelette, a man with “same-sex attractions” married to a woman, was brought in to fix what was seen as a problem.

As Rodgers recounts in Pray Away, a new Netflix documentary on the “ex-gay” movement within western Christianity, and her book Outlove: A Queer Christian Survival Story, Chelette preached an enticing, insidious gospel of change: that Rodgers’ attraction to women was due to an insufficient bond with her mother as a child, that such attractions could be neurologically altered by committed study, that to do

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