• Despite an overall decrease in violent crimes, there was an 8% increase in bias-motivated incidents reported to the FBI in 1997 as compared to 1996.
  • A psychoanalytic frame of reference is very useful in trying to understand why it is difficult to achieve attitudinal changes. (People's attitudes towards themselves and towards other people depend not just on conscious factors-what they believe or don't believe-but also on unconscious factors like thoughts and feelings that are outside their conscious awareness.)
  • In some (perhaps many) people, homophobia derives, in part, from a heterosexual's fear and anxiety about his (it seems to be more common and most dangerous in young men) own sexuality. Such a person worries that he has homosexual desires.
  • Psychologically the homophobic activity actually represents the EXTERNALIZATION of the homophobe's self-hatred, of his hostility toward something that lies within himself.
  • An unwanted pass from a gay person has been used as a justification for a violent response. In fact, "crimes of passion" have been ever-present in human history (where a sexual pass at a man's girlfriend provokes a violent reaction by the spurned man against the other man).
  • Because it involves issues of sexual identity and sexual orientation-both issues involving the body-anti-gay bigotry may be a deeper phenomenon than either anti-Semitism or racism.
  • The most significant psychoanalytic approach is one in which there are no a priori assumptions about what a therapist or analyst should or should not do in treatment with regard to sexual orientation or any other aspect of life.
  • Therapists who do not take into consideration the impact on gay children (or children who will grow up gay) of social and familial hostility, do not understand how this hostility undermines gay children's self-esteem, and therefore their emotional and psychological functioning.
  • Freud on Homosexuality | APSA Position Statement | Discussion Points | Videos

    Copyright, 1999, The American Psychoanalytic Foundation. All Rights Reserved.
    all photographs by Mervin S. Stewart, M.D.