A Catholic school in Italy has taught its students that homosexuality is a “psychological deformity” which can be cured.
Maths teacher Armando Baldissin introduced the programme to 13 and 14 year olds at La Traccia di Calcinate, a school of nearly 1,000 students in Bergamo in the north of the country, which included being gay on a list of “immature and unfinished sexualities” along with paedophilia, Gay.it has reported.
Teenagers at the Catholic school were told that homosexuality was an “authentic disorientation of the personality,” which, the sex education manual stated, was “recoverable during childhood and adolescence.”
“If helped by a good psychologist, it is possible that the homosexual drive can be silenced.”
Catholic school said homosexuality was “inadequate”
Homosexuality, the children were taught, was an “obvious contradiction between the attraction that one feels and the body one has” that was caused by “self-inadequacy with respect to one’s sexual identity.”
The teaching materials, which included a section called, “When desire is not adequate for one’s own humanity,” stated that “if helped by a good psychologist, it is possible that the homosexual drive can be silenced.”
The manual also told students that men and women were physiologically different, saying: “The genital organs correspond to the temperamental types: one is simple, excitable and impulsive; the other is complex, welcoming and reserved.”
Baldissin, 60, used his own book as material for the lessons, as well as the story of Luca Di Tolve, a self-described “ex-gay” in Italy who wrote a book titled I Was Gay and seeks to ‘cure’ other gay people.
The Catholic school, which receives hundreds of thousands of euros in government funding, according to Italian outlet Gayburg, has reportedly shut down the programme in the wake of reports.
Gay conversion therapy is dangerous
The idea that there is a ‘cure’ for homosexuality is not just limited to Italy.
A study published earlier this year found that 20,000 LGBT+ teenagers in the US will be forced into gay conversion therapy with a licensed healthcare professional before they turn 18.
The practice has been debunked by experts all over the world, who have agreed that forcing teenagers to repress their sexuality is linked to depression, self-harm and even suicide.
Dozens of organisations including the American Medical Association, the UK’s National Health Service and the Australian Psychological Society have condemned the practice of gay ‘cure’ therapy.
The Pan American Health Organisation, a United Nations healthcare body which covers 35 member states in the Americas, has said healthcare professionals who offer the option to ‘cure’ homosexuality “reflect a stark ignorance in matters of sexuality and sexual health.”
Any medical practitioner who recommends gay conversion therapy to a patient “not only offends them but also contributes to the aggravation of their problems,” the group added.