I didn't watch the VP debate because I can't bring myself to listen to Mike Pence speak.
In case you didn't know, Mike Pence wanted to divert all national HIV funding into "conversion therapy" for the LGBT community
Conversion therapy is when they take someone who's LGBT and force them to become straight by any means necessary (including shock therapy)
I was in conversation therapy from November 2012 to May 2013 (I was 15/16). Those are the darkest days of my life.
The first session they sat down with my parents and I and explained their tactics. They used a 2 part system that usually takes 9 months
The first part (the first 6 months) they "deconstructed us as a person." Essentially teaching us to hate ourselves
And this wasn't just the fake "oh I hate myself" you hear on the streets. This was a deep loathing for everything you are.
This stage was done when we were so desperate to change ourselves that we were willing to do anything.
They explained that about 50% of their "patients" killed themselves when this process was near completion
I found this to be true. I met around 50 people during my time there, and 27 killed themselves. We were all between the ages of 13 and 17
Jamie, the only 13 year old I met during my time there killed himself during my second week. He was the first I saw die
After him, they all kind of blended together. Every week (we did groups on Mondays) I would wonder who would be there and who would be dead
I was also suicidal as I was reaching the end of the first step. I attempted several times, but they didn't work. All I wanted was death
The second stage was when they would "rebuild you in their image." Basically, they would teach you how to be straight
This stage never lasted long because we were desperate. Most people finished in a couple months. It was all about repressing yourself
They taught you how to talk, walk, eat, dress, and act. They stripped you of your individuality and made you a robot
I got out because I was lucky. In October before I had started, I applied for a missions trip with my church to Jamaica
When I was there, I saw my opportunity. If I could come back and act like I was ready and on fire for step two, I could make it.
I fucking sold it. I came back in the start of April and I finished in May. They even told to my parents that I was excited to be straight
I never finished step one, but when I left I was destroyed. I still hated myself because they didn't teach you to love yourself
All they taught was repression. They even encouraged suicide because "at least we wouldn't be gay anymore."
Every time I see Mike Pence, I have flashbacks to these horrible months. I remember what they did to us
I couldn't even begin to tell you the tactics they used during step one because when I try to talk about it I completely shut down
But it was enough to make 27 people kill themselves in 6 months. Conversion therapy is vile. Do not support this vile man