Ralph Knowles

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[00:00:00] This program is brought to you by pride in zero.com. [00:00:06] By life's rough nose, and I was born in Dinesen in 1944. a household was a pretty typical North laden household. And those days it was very residential neighborhood. So that the children and our house, I have three siblings. And another brother who died before I was born, which is another part of my story, but, and neighboring children all went to the same school. Very different now, because the University of a tiger is bought every property is within the lane. And there are now University facilities on those sites. But I'm [00:00:52] happy 50s childhood. [00:00:56] I mean, I think now Nathan has been very cold. Great. But in my memory, they were they were summer days playing with with Georgian and Francis, Peter and other people in the in the neighborhood. And I went to state primary and state secondary schools. Nothing very unusual there. Although the primary school I was in was a model attached to the donating Teacher's College. And it was designed to give Chinese students the opportunity to meet the sort of city they would find if they were teaching a country school. So the standard 124. And it was all people from one neighborhood. So I had siblings and neighbors in my class at George Street normal. [00:01:53] You mentioned about your brother, the awesome way. But what happened, [00:01:57] he died at age eight, a brain tumor [00:02:02] in 1943. So that was in the war. And my father wasn't at home. It didn't leave New Zealand, but he was away in armed forces. Barry was a obviously a bright and likable boy. And the impact of his death was very, very strong on my mother, so that I was really in my 20s before we could risk openly referring to bury, not in a winter sterile or made a scene or anything. But you just knew that this was an area that that you should stay away from. And my art suggested to me once that I do the arithmetic of when I would have been conceived in relation to the first anniversary of Barry stick, I think it's quite likely that dead was home on leave on that anniversary. So Barry died January 1943, dead at home January 1944, rough sport and November 1944. But my bracelet with me just didn't make anything over but just suggested that I do with metallic. [00:03:24] Who knows. [00:03:26] I think to some extent, I was the son who replaced Barry. And since in those early days, the psychiatrist always wanted to know what your relationship with your mother was like and with your father was absent and all that sort of business. I can't help wondering if there was some significance to that. [00:03:49] Can you give me some examples as to why you thought that [00:03:55] that was really only once I started reading about homosexuality and and the discourses you know, absent father, [00:04:04] father, dominant mother and all that stuff [00:04:08] in those days when they were when they were really pushing the family relationships as a likely cause of homosexuality. And so I was reflecting on looking for anything that might have been different for me. [00:04:25] I don't actually hope but. [00:04:28] But I did think of it. [00:04:32] So how would you describe yourself as a child [00:04:38] heavy, BIT bit weedy, you know, inclined to bronchitis and asthma and things like that, but not not clinically so and intelligent problem well, with my with me, school man's got good results at school, [00:05:01] socially confident. [00:05:04] Some of those things faded as the years went by. But that's that's how I see myself, we've spoke up, we've still got the minute block of the class meetings from about 1954 to 58. And course, my sister was also in the class and I've already mentioned two neighbors and, you know, Ralph low seed and, and the chairman Ralph Knowles role and all this sort of thing. This was the teachers attempt to introducing us, to us to democracy to democratic processes. And it's really quite embarrassing to read that minute. But the Niles family had a lot to say in those meetings. [00:05:47] So can you paint for me a picture of what it was like? just post war 1950s? deleting What? How was it like growing up in that kind of environment? [00:05:58] And I wasn't aware of missing out on anything, really. I mean, I knew that there were other parts of town where people were better off. But, you know, some of the measures in the neighborhood, not everyone had a car, but we did. Not everyone had a telephone. But we did. We had one of the larger properties in terms of area. Most of the houses nearby had two houses on a section the size of ours, so that we had a big front lawn. So we were often the center of, of neighborhood games, and so forth. All sorts of things that are so different now than it was a corner dairy. You when you walked a few blocks to them butcher or reprise supermarket, I actually had a job as a as a delivery boy for the local dairy. And during that time, so around age 12, by the what are we saying? mid 50s he started to sort of mini market, he started to serve yourself and talk they ended up being a counter behind which you stood and serve customers and the church was named by All Saints Church, and All Saints Church forget a lot in my early days there I was born on All Saints Day. And my 21st birthday was the day that the parish turned 100. So it was all terribly significant. I'm not suggesting meant in any way, but it was just significant. I went to Sunday school there during the Boys Choir before my voice changed. And after that I became a server. And that's one of the altar servers. We belong to what was called the goal of servants of the century to get all to be seriously that lead on to my sense of vocation to the priesthood. So other than my involvement in church activities, Sunday school, Bible class, choir serving and so on, was quite significant, which was interesting. Mom was a reasonably dedicated Anglican dad was agnostic, if not atheist, and really didn't show much interest at all in and our religious upbringing. [00:08:28] So what drew you to the church and it was [00:08:32] really just that it was a bit like me went to school, you went to Sunday school, it was nothing more significant than that. But many people just have something in life with that, that fascinates them. In the case of my partner, David with whom I live for many years, it was it was horse racing, and had a lot of other interests to some more intellectual and horse racing. And, and he and I used to joke about it, because my interest in religion and his interest in horse racing, were much the same in terms of the practical impact. You know, if you if I saw an article in the paper about the church overseas or some theologian, I was fascinated by it. If he saw an article about some scandal, the horse racing industry was first. And you know, they both had a calendar, in the sense that the end of the church calendar of events during the year and the the racing calendar was the same. The rituals, church was rituals and another priding ran the the bird cage at a race meeting colors, Eucharistic basements, and purple and green and red and so on. And then jockeys, colors. And we talked about the fact that horse racing wasn't really all that important. But it was fascinated by and couldn't pass by any piece of information about horse racing is a bit the same but pray about religion [00:10:02] as an adult, me more than that. [00:10:07] But I'm, I'm not a fervent believer. I'm heavily involved with I'm not actually a believer, which is a strange thing. But let's just any piece of news any you know, I now subscribe to several websites and an online news services. I read them every day. [00:10:32] So bacon 1950s to Nathan, what was your world made up often terms of the diversity of people in your world, [00:10:41] north and even in those days was quite, scandal head Anglo Saxon Protestant, but that's not quite fair, the word Catholic families. But we didn't really have anything to do with them. They went, they went to other schools. And we were aware of them a certain amount of shadowy piece of each other, but it was all pretty light hearted. So the neighborhood was really very monochrome. But among my friends, civil boys civil bills, I had sisters, my older brother had Maurice left home by the time I was growing up, that's quite an age gap between us. Not all not a wide range of socio economic difference. Although there were families in the district, which we were conscious of being better off, particularly if they had overseas fans, and could in those days by an English or an American car. election in in 50s, in New Zealand was really reserved to farmers adopters. And in the case of our neighborhood, the average person father Charles Harrison was English, and obviously still had overseas fancy new English cars. Whoo. [00:12:09] What about in terms of homosexuality? Was there any mention when you're growing up of [00:12:16] homosexuality and not not as such [00:12:22] that I was aware of adult conversation about some people who I know are homosexual I knew that they were being talked about in in some slight scandalous way. I had the the gym teacher to lead northern to media. So we're talking 5657 by the 1950s 1957. The gym teacher there was known to be gay. He went on to become a professional actor and appeared and went to England English TV programs. The other people around who were known to be gay, and I'm thinking William in love and Bernard Escalante were prominent people in the in the theater scene and Denise and I should at some point mentioned the theater scene or donating because it was significant in my adolescent years it's just an awareness that the word mean who lived with us really what outside it with me? No, I don't remember any sense of disgust or scandal really but and yet I still picked up the impression that this was all a bit sort of doubtful [00:13:50] you know, not [00:13:52] not quite proper [00:13:55] we we're using the word gay is that would that would have been used what what would be used [00:14:03] one of them [00:14:05] that was as he one of them you know, that was that was pretty typical. I don't remember what was what was said. There was some theory that he was a bit suspicious if you will, White Sox I remember there [00:14:23] real being wear pink these days, but those tasty white socks were were a giveaway. [00:14:30] I'm and I've been thinking about other words that were used at the time. But I'm not suggesting they were used in my family or in conversation that I ever heard but deviant, queer, invert fairy, Farragut, more us and New Zealand but fairy was the reason for common. And then the other ones you should lift her and poop for sure. And [00:14:58] things like that. [00:15:00] So with a words that you actually heard at the time, or is this friction reflecting back a [00:15:05] bit about queer certainly [00:15:10] would be queer would be the main man. [00:15:14] So what age were you aware of these compositions starting to happen? [00:15:19] Well, I think I'd have been about 10 or 11, sort of saying 1954 55. That was it about that time that I was becoming sexually aware of myself. Though I couldn't get those that time. The, the label homosexual on myself. But by then I knew that I was growing up differently from my boyfriend, George. As his sexual awareness developed, he was interested in women and Kevin magazine, pictures of the moon, women and so forth. And I realized that I wasn't really interested. In thinking back, I've got I've still got a couple of books that were given to me children's books that were given to me. And as early as 1952, which had illustrations in them, of of mean, Nia, Nathan or Nathan. One was how the Mary's Lyft. And those a picture of, you know, tattoo barracks. And there was a story battle laden with the genie was wearing nothing but a sort of blowing cloth. And I was fascinated by those. Now we're talking in 1952 53. So I'm sort of a nine. But by 10, or 11, I was really aware of the difference between the way, George George's and we're developing on the way my interests were developing. [00:17:04] Can you give me some examples of why do you say that one? [00:17:10] I can't remember exactly why we were doing it. But I mentioned the caffeine magazine before, there was a caffeine magazine that had that had some caricature or cartoon picture of a nude woman. And George was, George wanted me I was a bit more just, and he was, George wanted me to trace that, and, you know, and, and, and copy it form, and so forth. And I thought, I'm much more interested in, in the picture of Superman, and as tights director, and I was conscious of their, and there was another other occasion when there was a those exhibition of, of nude photography in Fela quite a down a target peninsula. Well, George, you, we've got our bikes on the Bible way down, and we tried to get into conflict with them dead. And someone made was just, it was obsessed with the idea of getting to see this photographic exhibition. And I sort of thought [00:18:18] so those thoughts that you were starting to have in the, in conscious of feelings towards mean, can you describe what those feelings were with a just an intense interest? Or was it something [00:18:38] an intense interest? [00:18:41] I mean, at that age, boyhood friendships are more intense than friendships with girls anyway. So it was only once we were getting past that point that I, that they, you the different social interest became evident. I can't be more specific than that, really, that just a growing awareness that my interest was in the male body when other boys interest was in the female body [00:19:11] into that concern, you [00:19:14] know, not really [00:19:17] being being homosexual, is never really greatly concerned me, which was an interesting thing, which to be talking about aversion therapy at. And, you know, a lot of people might think, you know, did you realize it was wrong, I don't think I ever thought of it as wrong. I thought of it as different. I didn't know that it wasn't something that you've talked about. That's not quite the same thing as is thinking it was wrong. I realize wrong, I knew that the church identified it as sinful, and I tried to address there, but not even that really exercise my great. I think I was remarkably lucky, from that point of view, that a lot of people of my generation were overwhelmed by guilt and shame. And neither of those is really been part of my life, which I think says something of the security of my upbringing in a happy family. [00:20:23] So as as a as a, as a teenager, or young boy growing up. Did you actively go around looking for people with white socks? [00:20:35] No, but I was fascinated by this. [00:20:40] I must have picked up clearly Well, we talked before about being men who lived with me and I was certainly in tree by that. And then as as I developed once I was sexually mature material of the lake was quite different. I mean, by the wasn't sloughing from being with white tops. [00:21:05] What about the theater scene and even you're saying that was quite a big part of your growing up as well, right. [00:21:13] In, I think 1959. That's my fourth year [00:21:19] of friend, a high school friend [00:21:24] introduced me to the Globe Theatre. [00:21:28] The production that year was Hamlet, and they wanted a couple of boys to play the king and queen in the play within the play. And Keith was the king was the queen and I was the king. And so we became involved in the Globe Theatre, Patrick and Rosalie Kerry, and that was news to me. I've never been to a theater production my life before my family me. Quite well written reasonably. Went involved in theater or anything of that sort. And so I was fascinated by all that, and fascinated by the people that I met there as well. And I went on and was in the Duchess of Melfi, Oedipus Rex, and Tiffany Waiting for Godot. Always as a as a boy. And he was Rick's I was the boy that lead the blind, it was around in Waiting for Godot is the boy that turned up and talks to them and the last stages of the play. And so I became aware then, of people who were obviously theatrical, obviously, several of whom are homosexual, and one or two of whom I came across later, not that I socialize with them better right [00:23:01] here in there. [00:23:04] And with significant because [00:23:08] my French teacher knew that I was a wee bit involved and in the theater world, and so when the university French clapper, everyone's phone said, wanted a boy for a play. My French teacher put my name forward. So I was I played the boy, the school boy in a money production that the French club at the university was putting on. And one of the other players, who was a few years older than me, six years older than me, had been at a tiger boys. And he and I were both on at the beginning of the end of the place, and we were hanging around for an hour reward in between times. And he bought a propositioned me. He introduced the top of my head, I read Peyton Place. Many people want to remember Peyton Place, but all was a raunchy novel up the dark. And I see this ahead, and did it turn me on? Yes, it did. And that led to my first significant sexual experience with another man. And I think I can still feel the impact, the excitement of under his fly. I mean, you know, we're talking [00:24:32] 55 years later. [00:24:35] So the theater world, it put me in touch with that, that was my first significant sexual experience. [00:24:43] And I treasure that man. [00:24:47] And so I'm wondering what happened between being kind of sexually active at 1415, and not necessarily having a problem with homosexuality, and been wanting to go and seek treatment for homosexuality. What What, what happened, [00:25:07] it's been two things together. My interest in the church, my increasing involvement with glass, altar servers, and so forth. I thought I'd assumed vocation to the priesthood. That's one thing on one side, on the other is that I didn't knew that I was homosexual. I couldn't have put this description on by the end. But I can now say that I'm a Kinsey sex, that is to say, as someone who is completely sexual and devoid of either a sexual reaction. So you've got those two things, and they weren't tension. not worried about being gay, but wanting to be in the church. And knowing the church wasn't all that thrilled about that. What really brought to a head was it in my first year to sell one at Target University 1963 64. So by the mid 1920, I began a relationship, a sexual relationship with one of the other theological students. Now we both were both in the same Parish, and we both reported to the same parish priest, who was very good to me, but also was a poor, the sky and I weren't a sexual relationship. And to be fair, I mean, I think, I think the guy was probably basically heterosexual, and certainly made on married and had kids and so forth. I don't know quite what, why he allowed himself to be involved. I mean, right. We were We were sexually involved for short period of Don, and, and the parish priests, new, both our stories, and wasn't happy with their [00:27:08] and suggested to me that, that really, [00:27:13] homosexuality was a problem. [00:27:17] And that we ought to do what we could about addressing it. And he suggested that I consult the Student Health psychiatrist, which I was perfectly happy to do. And that student health psychiatrist was Dr. Basil Jenkins, whom I now know, [00:27:41] head pioneered [00:27:45] aversion therapy in England. [00:27:48] So we're now talking late 1964. And, by the way, I've done a lot of reading about homosexuality. Read reports of psychoanalysis and theories, you know, group therapy, and goodness knows what, I couldn't see any of those having any effect on me. But I never heard of behavioral therapy. And bezel James explained, the behaviorist approach to human sexuality, said that he thought that my homosexual interests were [00:28:29] learned. [00:28:32] And that if something had been learned whenever, but if something had been learned, can be unlearned. And he was he was a proponent of behavior modification. [00:28:46] Just before we go on with, with that, I'm just wondering if you can just rewind a wee bird. And with the priest, same, it was a problem. Do you think that at the time the wider community felt that homosexuality was a problem? [00:29:06] Look, I never experienced that. But I mean, it was still [00:29:11] the stars mitten once concerned. That's what we're talking about. It was sec. As far as the law was concerned, it was a crime. As far as the church was concerned, it was a sin. And [00:29:23] you read in the papers, truth, in particular, [00:29:28] the reports of scandalous things, I have to say most of the things I read about and in the newspapers the time tended to be what we would now call paedophilia. And that's never been the issue for me. I mean, I was interested, as a as a young man I was interested in and was an older, younger me. But never, never and kit was never an issue. Most of the newspaper reports were about those sorts of cases. But one guy that I met quite often on the beat, and once went home with and his diamond now appeared on the court papers. He'd been, he'd been arrested for loitering and was convicted and was jailed. So that, that that will that so that was what the the wider world thought about it. But I wasn't conscious of that in my own in my own family, or even in the neighborhood. And unspoken, rather than I mean, just not talked about, rather than talked about with revulsion or disgust. [00:30:46] And did you have any conflict within yourself about what you were doing? [00:30:53] I really didn't, I guess I should have said I really didn't. [00:30:58] I knew this was me. [00:31:02] Insofar as I thought about it, I thought, Well, okay, God created me this way. Can't be all bad. I might have a lot of thoughts about how I dealt with it. What I did with that. But in terms of actually being homosexual sliver, I just taught me Okay, that's who I am. And so [00:31:23] your relationship with this other students? Did you ever talk about what you were doing? Or it was just more [00:31:30] physical thing? physical thing? Really? Yep. I mean, I was in love with him. [00:31:37] Was he was me. Who knows? I mean, we spent all our spare time with each other. We went on holidays together. This is before it became sexual would. We'd been best friends for a year to buy them? And just, you know, one one night, he'd been teasing me [00:32:01] simply I mean, [00:32:03] and I just said, but we put up or shut up. [00:32:09] And he put up [00:32:12] teasing you and what my [00:32:13] artist he knew I was gay and knew that I found him attractive. Yeah, just show being a bit provocative in the weight room around holiday saying it's a bit provocative and the way I'm dressed or the way the way talks about himself. [00:32:36] And so you and he would both tell the priest, what what was going on [00:32:41] here? Yeah. [00:32:45] Well, we will both hydrate Jenkins, [00:32:50] which meant that sacramental confession was part of the church discipline. And what you fronted up to win, you thought it formed short of the standard and express regret for [00:33:10] that's, that's the context in which it would come out. And he would he parish priests would have needed a procedure from me. I was just thinking about conflict of conditional secrecy. Very right here. That's how, that's how he came to suggest that I see Student Health psychiatrist, was there anything you didn't tell the priest? No, no, that wasn't, that wasn't the deal. Really. The front, he was a, it was a real guy, he, quite apart from the business with this other student, he, he was also unhappy, on my behalf with the amount of cruising I was done. And he, he was really quite client must have been previous my parents here because it was that was 67. Not enough. Because he, he gave, he gave me a coin. It was a penny, which would have been the cost of a telephone call. And he said, I want you to carry this with you. And if you ever in trouble, or if you feel you've got yourself into a situation which you can't handle, or indeed, if you just want to stop what you are doing. You remain anytime, day or night. And if it did, but that was that was a pretty past really sensitive way of approaching things I thought. [00:34:40] So what did you think when it was suggested that you you go and talk to a psychiatrist? [00:34:48] I really thought that see that this parish priest was also one of the bishops advisors. So he had some responsibility for the formation of theological students. I thought that I thought it was reasonable for him to say this is a problem. I mean, I couldn't quite imagine. [00:35:07] But different now. But in those days, [00:35:11] by and large, include you expected to be happily married. So although there were a few celebrate, or single clergy around, I guess, like seek to the life would be easier as an Anglican priest, if I was straight. I had no great desire to be straight, and had no great belief that anything I'd heard off up to them was making the difference. That that nevertheless, life would probably be easier. And if the church was asking me to give this ago, then I should give it a go. [00:35:53] I still think that was the right thing to do. [00:35:57] And we're jumping ahead and having fun. [00:36:01] I felt, I've given it a go. I've done what was expected of me. It hadn't worked. And it was time to get on with life. [00:36:12] At the time, I mean, we're talking about kind of gay and straight at the time. Was it conceivable to have a for instance, a gay lifestyle where you actually lived quite heavily with another man? Or are we talking gay being sexual encounters that were kind of random? [00:36:34] I was certainly thinking off of a patent as I lived with, and I just couldn't see. Ralph and David Be seated in the Winton Vicarage notes, but I'm fear on Winton was just to give you a rural South land or South a tiger. [00:36:54] I just, you know, just [00:36:56] although that happens now. [00:37:01] Just that wasn't, you couldn't contemplate that. [00:37:07] I don't know how I thought we were going to understand. [00:37:10] But it was certainly worth giving, changing ago, when this new behaviors theory had been brought to me. Can you recall how many adults [00:37:24] waiting to see the psychiatrist for the first one. [00:37:30] It was it was late in the academic year, because pretty just sort of [00:37:39] focused on [00:37:41] finals. And that sort of fact, I don't remember any particular anxieties. Having agreed to go into hospital for this treatment really was an issue. Because I felt, I really felt very strongly that I hit till my period, what I was and what I was doing about us. And that was a big, big tension. We got to the stage, the parish priest, and I were I said, I really want to do and really dreading it. I've got to do it. That if I don't get around to it, will you do with a nice, of course, I will talk to your mother. One fact, I came out to mom on the eve of going into hospital [00:38:28] will come back to getting into hospital and telling your parents medtech. But I'm just wondering, when you first had the meeting with Dr. James, what was it like? coming forward with the idea of homosexuality and seeing it as a problem? What How did you how did you verbalize what was going on with you? [00:38:53] I think really just that I was conscious that I was homosexual that I was having a sexually active. This was in the parable of the church's expectations. And, you know, obviously, in you how I've been referred that, that the preliminary interviews were really a bit of a fast, I suppose I've read enough about, you know, psychotherapy and so forth. And it's all the same old stuff, you know, talking about your mother and your father and your relationship with his [00:39:27] and with your liver been [00:39:30] sexually interfered with them. All sorts of perfectly standard stuff reasonable for them to be asking, because sort of the idea, here we go. [00:39:41] They don't seem terribly predictable. [00:39:47] And what was his attitude? [00:39:50] He was a poll number basil Jones. [00:39:54] And I think that he, I think he felt strongly that sexuality was an unacceptable deviance. And, and that his professional duty was to do what he could to eradicate it. Because I certainly didn't present to him as a terribly troubled homosexual who had some heterosexual component that could be built on. I mean, I've since read enough about it to know that sort of thing they're looking for, well, you know, somebody who's really distressed, really determined to change, and who had some heterosexual experience. I mean, that just wasn't me. [00:40:42] So what kind of language did he use? Can you remember that? [00:40:46] I've really, [00:40:49] I've, I've since acquired his notes. But it almost eligible and very, very brief and cryptic. [00:41:01] got really build, I can't recover that [00:41:05] cryptic and what language [00:41:06] just, you know, just the hard word and an abbreviation and, and that sort of thing. Just a few little sketches on a page? Really? I'm sure that made sense to me at the time, but they didn't mean much to me [00:41:22] 50 years later, [00:41:24] and how can we introduce the concept of behavioral therapy visionary, [00:41:29] he explained behaviors, therapy that learned behavior could be unlearned. And that, you know, the number of troubling behaviors that could be addressed through behavior modification, and mentioned [00:41:48] alcoholism, gambling, [00:41:52] certainly gave you a fair indication of where you thought you fit into the scheme of things. [00:42:00] And, [00:42:03] and, and then just got straight into explaining what the actual process would be. [00:42:10] Did he say, if he had done this treatment before, newseum, he doesn't [00:42:15] I've since research there. [00:42:19] No, I've got no awareness of [00:42:23] another guy even kind of was even a reference to Maven came to see us overseas. I mean, I know now for the year, but [00:42:33] that's not part of my memory. [00:42:37] So how did he sell it to you? [00:42:40] And you've said you think it would be a good idea to address your problem. And here is this new order here is this process which you have not previously considered. And I will mean that you undertake this treatment [00:43:03] with or other options available in terms of treatments, not offer by [00:43:09] American psychotherapy. [00:43:11] Well, debate there, [00:43:12] when I, because I wrote to him Well, after the vision therapy. And he did at that point, talk about other possibilities, particularly group therapy. [00:43:27] My experience of any sort of [00:43:30] group therapy of that sort tends to be that, you know, you should share your problems. But my view is that two or three gay people in a group could be likely to end up having sex than [00:43:46] then addressing the problem. [00:43:53] So even went through the procedure of actually what would happen and how did he describe been [00:44:01] in very neutral terms. And some of the details I didn't tune into at the time, it was only once I was actually there. That [00:44:14] was going to be really, [00:44:17] I don't mean to mislead me, just mean that he concentrated sort of on the theory of you know, he just told me what would happen that he would be using the dragon theory identified by now. And I wonder that that will be a dragon with it. So I had to provide erotic images and some anecdotes that I found siloed that would upset me. And he used those anecdotes to make up a tape [00:44:50] that was played at the same time. [00:44:54] treatment. [00:44:56] So just describe what was involved. [00:45:01] The first thing I need to comment on is that I was admitted to the ward underneath which was the psychiatric ward. That's not a good staff. And in those days, forgetting with a homosexuality was a particular issue. Mental Illness certainly was. And you certainly look twice at people who'd been in [00:45:21] as a public hospital, yeah. [00:45:25] into small room, blacked out, [00:45:29] bed, [00:45:31] nothing else. [00:45:34] The first treatment [00:45:37] does Tumblr, whiskey, a shot of morphine in the bum. Play the tape starts off with the anecdote that's exciting. And then within a minute or so says, This is making you feel a little you are feeling very sick you are And at that point, because they have more influence throughout the whiskey, that sensation over. [00:46:05] After the first session, my blood pressure dropped drastically. [00:46:11] So the hip sort of modify things. And after that, the sessions were every two hours, with some glucose and line in between my food to this period. And now leaving the room. So I must have, I must have utilized and dedicated in the room I divided, I don't let you remember that. Although I do remember the room getting more and more foul is young men, early 20s, scraping and puking all over the place. So that was pretty good. And that followed every two hours. So f4, morphine and the type and followed by glucose alarm and followed by a decision. f1 morphine and the take on Oh, no. [00:46:57] How long? Were you there for [00:47:00] the record show nine days? I'm surprised that that I didn't think I was there that long. I mean, I knew I'd put up with several days of that. And then I decided I've had enough of us. And I insisted, when they always came in to give me another dose. I insisted on seeing basil James. So he, we had a discussion on which I said, Look, this is enough's enough. I'm not continue with this. And he sort of said, Oh, you know, what would my parents if I gave up on what the church that I go up and daddy that down? Is it I really do suggest that you that you continue with this treatment? So I said, Okay, I will. And that appeared, the fact that I had now apparently, knowledge and given the commitment to continuing to attempt to go on with this attempt to change me, apparently, was what he was looking for. Because immediately the treatment stopped. I'm out, I'm showered rooms, prisons have put up flowers upon the middle aged males turned into newbuild young females. [00:48:21] This theory, I presume, was my commitment to continuing that he was looking for. Anyway. So that was session one. [00:48:31] I want to go back over the session one just in a wee bit more detail. But we haven't picked up the story of coming out to your parents. Can you recount how that happened? [00:48:46] Yeah, well, I mean, I felt that I couldn't I mean, I didn't know how long I was going to be in the hospital. But you know, obviously, it was going to be about 10 days, at least, I felt I really can't just disappear like this. It's just not what my relationship with mom and dad like. So on the night before I went in, I finally got around to talking to mom. She was doing Ironman. And I sort of said, Mom, you know, you know, I'm now 1020. And I still don't go for him. And you may have noticed on my bookshelf through a number of books about homosexuality. And I think I need to say that that's what I am. And I'm going into hospital for some treatment that may make a difference with us. [00:49:36] HTC God clean pajamas. [00:49:41] So that was [00:49:44] that was her Matter of fact, caring for her son response. And we really didn't talk about it when she didn't want to get any more. But she said [00:49:55] what was happening? I don't think it came into great surprise. [00:50:00] And she just wanted to make sure that I was clean and tidy. You know? Have I talked about it since with her not significantly but rapidly became CEO Not long after that I hitched up with was David Patra head for 30 odd years. And he and I were just absorbed into the family and treasured. Really, as far as I can tell, apart from weddings and wedding presents, we were treated the same way that I married brothers and sisters were both sides of the family, his his family and mine was no kids. My dad came to stay with us often. We went down there and stayed with him. That was all very Matter of fact, which I thought was pretty good. Because I mean, not through other associations, I've known people who, who you men, his photos, his faces were cut out of family photos, because the family products were I mean, they were [00:51:10] totally exploded out of the record. [00:51:14] That's just not my experience. And if I need to make the general point. [00:51:21] You know, this notion that dogs by people who expect to be button, I sort of feel it applies to, to my life in a way that the young men I've dealt with who were terribly traumatized, may have trouble with bosses and so forth. Some Somehow, I don't mean deserved. But I assumed that I would be treated with respect for myself, that I was not going to be discriminated against, even though it was still illegal. And that was my expectation. And I have to say that with very few exceptions in the webinar. with very few exceptions. family was OK, friends. Okay. Employers were okay. workmates were okay. [00:52:09] If I had any problem, [00:52:13] hidden books on your shelf about homosexuality, and it must have been a pointer for your mother. How did that come about? [00:52:22] Well, you know, by then you see, I'm a theological student by name. So, you know, the pastoral books, the technical books, pastoral books, books about pastoral oceans, broadly. I mean, the word raunchy gay novels, was sent like DJ risks homosexuality, and things that were done by then a book which, which was really a manual. It was a book called minority published by Gordon westward, that was a pseudonym for someone else. And I shoplifted that from a bookshop underneath, [00:53:00] shamed for countered by it. [00:53:05] This is coefficient time. And, and honestly, it was a sociological study full of heavy data of research that was done in in England, Britain, England, can't remember which. And lots of anecdotal stuff. So it hit people of about my age and inclination, describing how they met someone on an underground toilet or whatever. It was, basically, and that's what you do. These are signs to look out for these the risks you're taking it yourself. [00:53:40] Anyway, so this was stuff like that. But it was. [00:53:47] I mean, it was in the context of why I had them but wasn't in the context of a wide range of, of things to do with, you know, pastoral care, and other aspects of theological training. [00:54:02] So when you told your mother and she said all, you know, make sure you pick up the channels? How did you feel? Had you have you brought this up in your mind? Is this is this is going to be a pivotal moment, or? [00:54:13] Yeah, I had really [00:54:16] is, I mean, I was, I knew I had to do it. And I was dreading doing it. More out of embarrassment than any sense that I was going to be designed, to be honest. I mean, our family when, in terms of family, I had no sex education whatsoever. And I have to say that other men of my age had the same experience. [00:54:49] So six wasn't says things sexual. We're just not talked about. [00:54:55] Locked up today, we just will brag enough to know that this was slippery that no wasn't proper for dinner table conversation, really. I talked to my younger sister by them, not to my older sister or brother, not neither of them left home by them. Talk to my younger sister of Michigan, but talk to an employer. Not an issue. A talk to college friends of the theological students, not an issue. But mom, just terribly Matter of fact, but not really keen to talk about it. [00:55:33] And she told you, Father, yeah. [00:55:36] And I had, I suppose I suspected at the time, they had an interview with Bessemer. Because there's a reference that he has in his notes, but no details of what they discussed. [00:55:48] And that was prior to the first session [00:55:50] now would have been after the first session, I think, or during an event, I think probably during [00:55:59] Do you know what your first this reaction was? [00:56:02] The only time I've had any conversation with dad about it at all. [00:56:07] He really talked about the law. [00:56:12] Not necessarily that was right or wrong, but about the importance of law as a regulating device in society. That laws were there for good reason that whether or not we agreed with them, we were bound as citizens to provide [00:56:32] that figured with the sort of approach you took to life generally. [00:56:38] in that conversation, we've talked about the into the origins of Roman lore and that sort of thing. But it was, it was that was that was the that was the aspect to talk. [00:56:50] That's really the only explicit conversation. [00:56:53] Can you recall, prior to the treatment, after talking to talk to Dr. James, between talking to him and in going in for the first session, how you felt what what was going through your head [00:57:08] apprehensive about, but pretty distracted by the holiday job I had by the end of waiting for university results. And that's, then that's what I don't really have been terribly keyed up about of other than the issue of needing to [00:57:26] drop to James give you any warnings beforehand, as to you know, could could things possibly go wrong? [00:57:33] No. [00:57:35] No, I don't remember any discussion of the actual drop, or of the risks involved. That may be being reprehensible on his part, because I now know that the case was South Africa, but the other one and Britain as well, people who have actually died of the morphing, I mean, gaming and the treatment of died of a reaction to the draft. But I didn't play any physical was connecting. [00:58:07] And did you have to sign some kind of waiver that would [00:58:10] look I don't remember that story, because now of course, yeah, there's a privacy officer, I have to get people to sign waivers for everything. But now I don't, I don't remember that either. I didn't realize it, which was the second session once you were out, which you might want to explore. But also that I had a final outpatients session with electric shock. Not convulsive shock. [00:58:37] Electricity instead of instead of nausea and juicing. [00:58:41] What comes with it? So prior to the first session, you were asked to, to come up with some images and some stories, what what can you give me some examples of what you kind of came up with? [00:59:02] I can't remember what you see made of the images, because I don't remember them being part of it. But it seems extraordinary. But in those days, there really wasn't a lot of gay pornography around. But [00:59:18] the were [00:59:20] ethnic magazines. And there was one in particular called man's world, [00:59:28] which I now know was produced sold with a Mac. [00:59:33] And those days, they were kept with the sports and the health magazines. And they were small booklets, of black and white photos of men of all ages, that mostly bodybuilder types in in quite provocative [00:59:54] poses. [00:59:56] So I had a few of those, I gave him one of those. And the terms of anecdotes I talked about sort of mean that attracted me, or the sort of things out on the bait that excited me. Which will not be sort of quite the same plan because it was there was an element of excitement in the hunt. You know, regarding regardless what the prey was sort of them in the way just to be free zone of excitement from you know, of the danger. And I did think police danger. I didn't think nowadays Of course, I think the anger being based up getting it wrong and being but no one was so circumspect at the danger of getting it wrong. [01:00:44] What was this reaction to that material [01:00:47] quite neutral. [01:00:49] Now, it was very professional that [01:00:51] he was a cool, cool customer. And I won't jump ahead to the second session, because the sort of parallel [01:01:01] So can you tell me what it was like being admitted to a public hospital psychiatric ward? [01:01:10] Not nice, basically. And one of the one of the consequent reactions short lived, but nevertheless, both within family, the extended members of family, and certainly a man, some families in the district. [01:01:31] Not there. They didn't know why I'd been in there, but I knew that I'd been in [01:01:38] so that people I had babysit for [01:01:44] no longer wanted me as a babysitter. [01:01:48] That's, that's the sort of fun, and, and even even family members. Just that sense of, you know, what's wrong with her. He's been in the home. What's it all about? [01:02:04] I wonder is, is he okay? [01:02:08] For me? [01:02:11] Is he safe? Is he going to take an ex and attack us or when I'm venting all that, but just I reserve I reserved, not because I was go because they knew that but simply that I had been in? [01:02:30] How did the medical staff treat you [01:02:33] there? The only the only doctor I saw was bezel James. But the orderlies who heard the drag again though they were neutral. But I was embarrassed because one and one of my notes from Quebec been suggested for two but I certainly remember one of the orderlies was someone I've been at school. He was in med school now. And I can see we are in my second year possibly. He was a mid school news to him as an orderly and [01:03:10] I didn't care for there [01:03:13] was no consequences that I never heard that he mentioned anywhere. Me or why was the [01:03:21] laughter [01:03:22] in for them. This would have been the first time they had tried this treatment. [01:03:26] I hope it was the only time but I can guarantee there. I actually have to follow the official information request about that. I might wonder but not quite as I would be. [01:03:38] So can you take me through after being admitted? Where were you shown Where did he go? We've taken [01:03:45] pretty much sight of the room that I've described Yep. [01:03:51] Help because that room [01:03:55] small enough room for a bit. Suppose it was a bit side cabinet recorders Do you know a standard old fashioned hospital window with a little wall side? [01:04:09] resign [01:04:13] two and a half measures by fours [01:04:18] and it was blacked out? [01:04:21] No. Vector early version? [01:04:25] I'm applying to say I'm shaded light bulb but I can't actually. But that was the gym. That was the gym efficient. It was a sale. [01:04:35] And were you able to leave that room? Did you know that going into that room that you wouldn't be able to leave for so many days. [01:04:43] I think I knew that I was putting myself to whatever came. [01:04:50] So you live in the room. What happens next? [01:04:54] Like Come on inside we ready for the first treatment like a big shot of whiskey the tumble whiskey. The [01:05:01] rollover they inject f4 morphine into my backside. That turns a tape recorder on. [01:05:08] Did they say what the injection would do? [01:05:12] I knew it was going to induce nausea. I didn't know what or how bad the nausea would be. But I knew this is a special time to help spine. What? What the modification involved? Yeah. It's just, you know, thinking about it in theory, like you know, this rate gets a shock every time does the wrong fader. Sort of clinical but scientific that was what attracted me to it all. That's what because I've never heard of before. And this was something you could sort of see the logic of it [01:05:53] you could see the logical [01:05:56] so then this and as I after the first one, you thrown the ball that the ball away, but you know, you change your pajamas, more sheets or anything like that. You're just just there in this room for as long as [01:06:13] the tape was that [01:06:15] bezel that was Basil's voices, [01:06:17] and bezza was describing your fantasies, your Yeah. How was that to listen to? [01:06:27] Well, slightly embarrassing in front of an ordinary but I mean, I was playing fair with the whole thing. I mean, I'd given the anecdotes to bits. [01:06:38] them back to me. [01:06:41] So the did the ordinary stay in the room with you? [01:06:46] Yeah. I don't know if that was part of the deal with a particularly after that first one when my blood pressure dropped where they felt that I needed to be someone there. And I the takeaway the bison. [01:07:00] So do you think it worked with Adam was was the intention that you would get aroused? And then [01:07:07] that's part of what's so completely, utterly pathetic about us. As I sit once or twice since to yet be theoretically had to be thoroughly aroused, to be completely turned off. [01:07:23] You don't get aroused. And those circumstances. [01:07:28] I mean, I could honestly say although I listened to talk in the anecdotes that I'd realized and are now being relayed to me [01:07:39] I mean, it was just a non sexual situation. [01:07:44] Good six one doesn't think of a middle aged or Liam, and a foul smelling room with no light and you've been full of effort often was just looking back this was just a basic barbaric, pathetic illogical [01:08:03] so what would the time difference be between actually the start of the tape happening? And you throwing up how long would that take [01:08:11] on? [01:08:13] Two Three minutes of most [01:08:17] is the drug acted quite fast and the tape wasn't terribly long. And when quite quickly from you know, isn't this exciting to you are feeling sick? That was no surprise feeling sick. Full of nausea inducing drugs. [01:08:34] Was there any wording on the tape to make you feel bad like homosexuality is bad or you are your son or what [01:08:48] was disgusting? Yeah. [01:08:52] That would that would be the approach. [01:08:55] This is this is this is disgusting behavior. You are feeling insert us sickened by this disgusting baby. I mean, I can. But that was that was the that was the thing is that's the first way of summarizing he was sickened by this disgusting behavior. You are feeling sick, you are really really sick. This baby makes you sick. [01:09:23] And so you would throw up after a couple of minutes and then what would happen [01:09:28] that go away and you waited for an hour and then you got a tumbler of glucose and live and then an hour after that he had another session [01:09:37] was there anything in the room that like I mean with a box that you can read that [01:09:44] absolutely no external stimulation. [01:09:49] You in your head [01:09:52] and what was going on here? [01:09:58] Pretty strong reaction getting with her as a side after. After what I now get it was a few days. I thought this is this is just bloody ridiculous. enough's enough. I'm not going to have another one of these. I'm a voluntary patient. I'm not going to have another one of these. I insist on seeing basil. James. [01:10:19] Tell me treatment treatments a day would you get? [01:10:22] Well, I think it was every two hours. So so 12 and a day. It might have been slightly less than that, but I don't think it was. That's why I can't really believe I was there nine day, I suppose the nine days would include the post therapy [01:10:39] to recovery. [01:10:42] I'm surprised that that [01:10:43] sort went all day in the life. [01:10:47] So I should tell my watch no light. No, no. No see it was day or night outside? [01:10:54] Was that the same audience or with a different world with [01:10:57] I must have been on shift? There was some some who were there more than once different [01:11:05] role model and mostly older men. [01:11:10] Today converse with you know, [01:11:16] just very [01:11:18] professional was reserved neutral. [01:11:25] They must have been pretty heavily briefed. [01:11:29] I mean, obviously I was supposed to be an isolation and I was not supposed to be sympathize with our supporters by surprise [01:11:39] was the anything in the room that allowed people outside the room to observe your behavior? [01:11:48] closed door door shut on know if there was a window to the card or the may have been because well, cuz I wasn't aware of people coming into outside of all. [01:12:03] It was anybody actually checking up on you and saying, you know, how are you feeling? What are your thoughts now? [01:12:09] What glances dancing? [01:12:13] Do you think that was part of it, where they would basically do it until you actually throw up your hands and say, [01:12:20] I think that's I haven't. [01:12:24] I haven't read other people's experiences. Or it's the heaven to talk very recently. And they're only in a comic context. But I I happened upon quite recently, way novel by Tom sharp South African writer called indecent exposure. And in the, in the South African police. They became aware, the love of the policeman, when Frank fraternizing with black women. And for the authorities, this was an absolute was also a crime. So they decided they were going to deal with us. And they decided to deal with it by vision therapy. And so they wholesale the treatment. So the Nazis and some extent the some of the some of the more recent research stuff that's from South Africa. [01:13:23] Over that time, that that first session of revision therapy, did you were you able to have a shower or not? And you were saying that you hit toilets within the room [01:13:36] itself, must have because I don't leave the room I oddly enough, I certainly know I had no shower, and that I was becoming increasingly smelly and sticky. [01:13:46] But [01:13:48] I must have been under a fair bit of mountain pressure to be honest, because we've talked about religion and may come back to it. But somewhere along that line, well into it, and possibly critical to my colon for basil James, I had a sense of quite explicitly Jesus Christ being present with me. Nothing more than presence and comfort from the presence. I don't actually believe that's what you say. Sort of tearing it up is my experience. But that was quite strong. Now, I mean, I'm inclined to think if you haven't been with food or proper nourishment for several days. So what is data? Listen, I think that's pretty, pretty normal. But it was interesting that it took that form. [01:14:46] And so [01:14:49] you were asking what was going on in my head? Well, I must have been getting increasingly stressed and affected by the whole process. Then I hit that experience. And I think, I think that since [01:15:06] since that, you know, I was being supported by other [01:15:11] was part of my determination to corporate side. That's enough. I don't remember Jesus Christ out. All right, Ralph, I love you. But I think that's what I felt, which was consistent of what I've said before, I've never actually, I've never actually felt designed by God, you know. So. [01:15:34] So what was the point of that whiskey? [01:15:39] I don't know. I think you have to have something to throw up on. And if you weren't being fed, you had to have something in your system. Whether it was a carry over from his, from his from other use of the treatment for alcoholics. I just don't know. But I mean, I can joke about it now. But I mean, I wouldn't touch a glass of whiskey to this day. And in the first few years after this, they used to be called magazine that often hear Johnnie Walker advert on the bed camera, full color on the back cover whiskey, and it would make me feel queasy. [01:16:27] split into into into bisexuality, [01:16:31] whiskey. [01:16:35] Whereas I don't know what that was about. But I think that I, I can only think that it was a carry over from, you know, that was an alcoholic, they're actually giving him something that he was supposed to be made sick by. [01:16:48] And that's it. That's what it was. [01:16:51] That tape message, debate change over the time, it was the same thing, [01:16:56] I don't think was even modified antic, with even two versions of it. [01:17:03] Just which means pathetic hasn't [01:17:08] been made sick by one anecdote. [01:17:12] What kind of tone of voice to be used on the tape are quite neutral. [01:17:17] Although I'm quite neutral and describing the body that the anecdote was, but then, you know, you been a bit more dramatic. You know, you are feeling sick. You are feeling very sick, you are going to be sick. [01:17:35] I mentioned it was being quite intense for the orderlies as well. I mean, [01:17:40] yeah. Yeah. So they, they knew I was there, because they were listening to tapes, including my old schoolmates. Anyway, quite fancy, one of the one of the school back for dinner. That's what? [01:17:59] So you, you finally got kind of fed up with the treatment. And you called for for Dr. James? Yep. How quickly did he arrive? [01:18:08] before the next session? [01:18:11] What was [01:18:12] what was the [01:18:14] discussion about [01:18:15] just my side, and I thought I wasn't prepared for the others, that I that I thought was great recruitment. That was a beautiful process, not blaming him, but it was referral process. And that and that I wasn't prepared to continue with it. And they needed need began this, what about when your parents think that you feel you have an obligation to them and the church or authorities to, to continue with this treatment, don't you realize that you know, can make your life better. And, you know, that's, that's behavior that needs to make change, and so on. [01:19:01] What was going through your head? [01:19:09] Well, really respect from mum and dad, more than more than he may have told me at that point that he'd spoken to them. I was more more focused on them than I was on, on the church or 30s. I made by the integrate, began to realize that, in fact, I wasn't going to make it into the priesthood, though, continues, but after that, [01:19:41] really just that we have made a commitment to seeing this through and now he liked the guilt on me with over mom and dad in particular, and relate [01:19:54] to them, if not to myself. [01:19:59] At that stage, have you any kind of concept of time how many days you've been, you? [01:20:04] Know, I knew, I mean, I didn't call them until I mean, I was fed up. So I knew that they've been a lot of sessions. [01:20:15] And so you agreed to continue. And he left [01:20:22] way best, I think he's signal there. And then that, that, [01:20:27] that was up. [01:20:30] And then within a very short space of time, I switched out to the, to the [01:20:37] different me. [01:20:39] The curtains for [01:20:41] the house will put on the table. And mom and dad and my friends were able to visit. I can't remember how long after their tentacles in much longer than there are next session. [01:21:02] And just to clarify that, during the time of the treatment, did you actually have any food [01:21:08] that I recall, no, just the glucose and 9am. And I was being given them that was very basic sustenance. [01:21:17] And the whiskey Of course, but I lost the whiskey. [01:21:23] So too many people come and visit, you [01:21:25] know, don't really remember. See, by the end, it was already University holidays. And most of my friends by them were University friends. And they had all this town. That was a bit of a problem which we might come on to [01:21:42] motivate parents to live. And how would they [01:21:48] talked about the weather and what the cat was doing and what the latest news from my older sister was. Family life continues, was certainly no discussion of what had been happening or what was happening. But that was typical of my family, really, not that they particularly prudish or uptight. But we just did not talk about six. [01:22:18] So, Was there some kind of debriefing after the treatment? Not that I recall. So literally, you just made her one time. Does that strike you as old? [01:22:34] Again, see, we were right in the period when museum closes down. I think to be fair, that was probably a an appointment made for early in the new year for me to see Bessemer giants again, then. [01:22:52] But I don't recall any debrief. [01:22:56] Perhaps I should say that the Holy Spirit was a wee bit numb. [01:23:05] And [01:23:07] I think I have closed down I have excluded from my memory semester. And I also think that in some ways, it had a bit of an effect on my recall to that date. I just feel I'm, well I'm vaguer about some aspects of my earlier life and st Max's about his it might just be different some way ones might not right. But I do feel that this this is way bit of a blur at that point. [01:23:46] So to bezel James, tell you what you may expect after the treatment [01:23:53] that I recall. [01:24:00] What happened after the treatment? I mean, how did you know it was successful or not. [01:24:06] But it wasn't successful? [01:24:10] I mean, I wasn't in terms of in terms of my sexual responses. I certainly there was no change that I was aware of. And sometime early in the new year, trips first week of the New Year. Yeah, here I am. And I'm indebted going away for a brief holiday. And all my friends are gone. I was born I was lonely and as Phaedra that's how I went crazy. And normally, normally take my teachers in the wars, but I can't believe I made a really, really lovely director was a steward of a coastal trader. And I spent the night with him. You see you No, no, no. Mmm, day to day, I didn't normally spend the night with people spent the night and it was just lovely. And I've joked about it in the past, but you know, the whole thing was all sort of gold and orator. Now, in fact, you know, that was really just the light from a wee bit side radio. But you know, the whole the whole thing. He was a nice guy, he was sexually attractive to me. We hit it off. [01:25:29] And I just thought I'm back to normal. [01:25:35] This is this is me. This is the way I am. And okay. [01:25:42] Story. [01:25:44] How much time has elapsed from that night to actually with it when the first treatment ended? [01:25:50] It said most of our time as to December about six weeks perhaps. [01:25:55] And in that time, had you had any kind of sexual thoughts? Are you [01:26:01] tired? I mean, obviously. [01:26:03] There's Mr. Bachchan, I mean, there's no difference whatsoever. [01:26:11] So what were your thoughts on the treatment thing, [01:26:14] West time. [01:26:18] But I made a commitment to trauma, [01:26:21] ascend all that really was the driver. I hadn't felt driven to the treatment in the first place. But having made the commitment to it. I mean, noses are stickers. And [01:26:40] it had you had any communication with the priests to who had advised you to? I [01:26:45] hope I must have over the Christmas period. And he wrote, I mean, I would have been a general your hope you're okay. Yes, thank you, father. But nothing more than that. And it was slightly, and it was slightly complicated the theological student with you. And I've been in a sort of almost up to close to when I went to therapy. I mean, we we communicated, but we stayed well away from the recent past or what, at that point, we say, well away from the recent past, or what I've just been through, [01:27:26] did he undertake any kind of treatment now? [01:27:35] I pushed him into a relationship. quite happy, but for the few months last. But I mean, I think definitely the thing that was [01:27:50] so what was your next meeting with with Bessemer? James, [01:27:53] what would have been back to Justin in sort of mid January or something like that. And [01:28:00] this was 1965 1965 [01:28:04] possibly like January. And I told him what happened in the meantime, both that I didn't detect any change in my sexual interest, and that I had hit a sexual experience. He was always pulling me neutral believers was pretty clear to me that he didn't think this was at all. And he said that he really thought it was important for us to seize the moment to build on the first treatment [01:28:42] and myself so. [01:28:46] So, I agreed to return [01:28:49] and not prompted by me, but certainly part of his pattern. The second session was first station had been very much reorientation suppress homosexual reaction, day orientation, suppress pumps, it permeation the second session, had a bit more focus on reorientation, suppress the undesirable, encourage the desirable, want to fit what illustrated there, he produced some girlie magazines, the parallel really of gay once the organization went out of in the game pre playboy, so black and white and a bit grainy, but at least quite explicit. And he had a tape, which was encouraging [01:29:50] his research for encouraging an interesting one. [01:29:55] And so, after the second session, I'm going to miss Kelly magazine, encouraging type, and a whole man shot. And I don't know what it was one of them to do. But I think it was sort of intended to stimulate sexual interest, which they trust me to focus on the girlie magazine and the encouraging type. So that was a bit more of an effort. So instead of just leaving, tempted to leave me neutral, they really did put more effort into refocusing. [01:30:34] And that second treatment was there on the same room. [01:30:39] As I recall, certainly the same Ward, [01:30:41] and they were doing the same routine of a blacked out room. Now the stimulus [01:30:47] was all what I've been here before, but still, [01:30:52] with a making you feel better by with it with a giving you food with a. So it was exactly the same routine every [01:31:01] as far as I recall, it was a complete repeat, except for after, after the session. And, and I don't actually remember what brought that lot to a close. I think bezza down simply indicated that, you know, he had scheduled a number of sessions. And we had now completed those and that we would now look at encouraging and the only the only treatment after there was an outpatient session with electrodes on my hand. Which was the same same sort of thing, except that it was you didn't bottom particularly disgusting. [01:31:45] Touched at hand. [01:31:48] I had to I had to encourage, I had to think of homesick for stimulating spirits, and then signal and bezel James would close the circuit and I'd get a job. And I have to say that after that tape and several times, you know, half a dozen lines, image hand up job image hand up job, image hand up, no job. But the image disappears from the mind an anticipation of having another show. I want to say the time, but I thought that it might have had more the nausea. But of course, I mean this the whole thing is just so pathetic. Because how does? How does he know? I mean, I here I am sitting in an outpatients room with a with a doctor. I mean, what sort of stimulating thoughts Am I going to? But I mean, I could have been thinking of seagulls, I might have been being put off seagulls for a new [01:32:57] series. [01:33:00] You see the logic of the figures, but they all have loopholes in the way it was applied. And you know, human beings are just more complex than that you can stop reading from the wrong fader. But human beings, especially in the sexual element are far more complex than that. just ridiculous. [01:33:18] That second session, how long? Did their vision therapy go for? I [01:33:22] don't know, I can't recall several days. [01:33:28] And the notes around notes are unclear. I really wanted to get that all sorted out of my mind. But the hospital notes from clear. [01:33:37] And do you know how it ended? Was? Was that those things where you put up your head? No, it [01:33:43] wasn't that? I think it was I think there was, I think because they had something in their minds to follow up with that they had determined he had determined by a set number of sessions. That's that's my record. [01:34:00] Was there anything different from the second session of therapy to the first session? [01:34:06] Only the follow up? No follow up after the first this heterosexual encouragement. [01:34:14] Was there any talk before you were discharged about you know how you feeling and just, you know, take [01:34:21] this material with you. And we do encourage you to, you know, to do everything you can to resist temptation, and and develop this this new interest? Not that I've ever confessed to a new interest. But anyway. [01:34:36] And so how did that kind of pan out? [01:34:39] no different from the previous time. And you see not long after that. So we're now talking the beginning of 1965 1963 and 64, I was living at home 1965 1966. I was so in college as a border. Where theological student was also a resident. And we were okay. Rebecca from you that was logo here. And one. Every night, we gather round about nine o'clock for supper in one room or another. And one night, another guy with whom I was quite friendly, said oh, you know, it's just brought the beginning of to really match it. And I've been a really troubling holiday period, a really close friend from tomorrow has told me that he's homosexual. I just don't know what to make of it or what to do about it. So Ken and I looked at each other and said, okay, and I said, john, I'm homosexual to disagree. And the conversation developed. And it was delighted that he said, was anything I could do to help us friend. So the range that I would make this friend [01:36:01] did [01:36:03] you live together for predictability? If we're not, not quite I mean, we caught it. And then when his mother died, we moved them to reflect together and look from 1968 till he died in 1995. So [01:36:20] now David, [01:36:22] guy became my partner. He had also been in bezel James's care, because he really was troubled by his sexuality. And bezel James certainly hadn't suggested in a sort of reorientation. And bezel James, it indicated to David, that to continue a homosexual life, with whom I certainly mean suicide, social or actual suicide. That [01:36:58] after meeting, David, did you have any correspondence with Bessemer? James about? I did, and and how did that [01:37:09] I wrote to him basically, he'd written to me to say that there was a 50 year medical student who was doing research in the area of homosexuality, not aversion therapy with homosexuality, and what I'd be prepared to talk to him, and I did, and I completely forgotten his name. But there's a reference to there's a reference to him in bezel James's correspondence, which I've since got from the hospital board. And I've come across a reference to his research, and another book, which refers to me, not by name, but but absolutely me and check the person date was the student aspect. So that was there, I wrote what was probably a pompous 21 year olds later, to pencil jack sort of asked him why he thought of failed and failed. And the two or three things I, I tackle them all, and what did I and what did he suggest I could do to make life better for gay people? And he responded to that he said that he thought I wasn't, you know, relatively strong and motivated to the treatment, I'd have to agree. And he basically said that he thought that was the note of grandiosity. And my last suggestion, and the really, the situation might get better, but that it didn't advise me to be involved in any anything. And that really, I would make proceed with the utmost discretion. [01:38:50] Did that happen? Free, they are patient experience. [01:38:55] A year of silence satellite. [01:38:56] Okay, so but quick go back to the outpatient effort. So what was the time difference between the end of the second session of vision therapy and you as an outpatient? We've got to end today. So I just want you to come in as an outpatient to see how it all went in. [01:39:13] And that was never repeated. So I don't know they're just opportunity to I was a lost cause. [01:39:20] So quick, can you go through the outpatient experience? The the idea of going back and and seeing how it was going? Was that something before you checked out? The second session that he said, come back in a week's time? [01:39:36] I think there was always that understanding that there would be a [01:39:40] not not not an emergency type session, but simply that, you know, that we had, we were committed to checking, checking out things were going and at that point, I don't think I had any, you know, further escapades to report to him I don't recall that it was just their history pop up different medium and just reinforce [01:40:07] it. Can you describe for me how that electric shock treatment worked? Like what what kind of room your [01:40:14] Justin's office was as a public hospital or [01:40:19] I must have been if you hit that gear with me wouldn't have had that student health. He must have had an office within the hospitals around [01:40:27] what kind of gear What [01:40:28] was it? Well, it was just a small generator and a couple of [01:40:34] nodes the button to push nothing terribly labor [01:40:40] to the generator make a noise. [01:40:41] No. Was pocket connected to low power bet for some sort of the shock was only about the god science experience experience with those are the things that the high school side back in those days was to generate electricity and hold hands and the shop ran down the hall lottery, all that sort of thing was, it was about that level, it was a jolt. But you know, since a jolt and unpleasant, but not not significant, really. And with a job, Scott, because that's what happened with the image in your mind to God. If you if you're dreaming about having sex with someone, and you get a shot on the hand, you don't go on dreaming? [01:41:33] So do you think the idea was always to have those two different types of therapy now? [01:41:41] The the liquid chocolate never been discussed, in terms in the initial conversations. And he was always quite fearless. And this is what I'm going to do. And this is how we do it. And this is what your pattern the processes like, you know, they mentioned TechCrunch Okay. [01:42:04] Can you describe some of the images and how they were they projected? Or whether [01:42:12] that's what was so silly as it could have been thinking of seagulls? [01:42:16] So what, what would he say to you know, think of erotic images, think of enough. [01:42:22] And similarly, when you when you conjure up something. So, at that point, he accepted, but the second session, even though ended up with focus on his hit on sexual behavior, hadn't really heard much of it. And we didn't go into a lot of that. I mean, here he was continuing to, to reinforce the D orientation. And as a method Pepsi was born on might have had some more profound effect from the new sessions head. [01:43:03] Did he give you any instruction in terms of the images you should have in your head? [01:43:08] No, just wanted to be homosexual and attractive? [01:43:12] And did you find it easy or hard to control the images? [01:43:16] Honestly, I'm not had to not have come to have the image. [01:43:22] No seats of arousal Really? happen? I'm in a doctor's office. And I played fear, I [01:43:36] used to just digitas image like that, really? Not necessarily doing anything, but I paid fair, I would, I would, I would think of an image of someone I felt attracted to signal. [01:43:52] And when Bing happened when when when he shocked you, can you describe that? [01:44:00] breaky just like that, you know, it closes the surface, the shock would come and the image would die, bang, bang. [01:44:10] And then, you know, the rest of a minute or something, john, which I was expected to, you know, start the process again, literally signal and as I after, I don't know, half a dozen of those. He didn't close the circuit, but an expectation they have, in my mind the image disappear. [01:44:33] What's the shock enough to make you kind of verbalize or? I mean, was it a big shock? [01:44:41] No, it was strong enough to be unpleasant. But yeah, not. Not really. I wouldn't even I wouldn't even. [01:44:53] I mean, not if you know, just [01:44:58] and the electrodes they were placed, you're [01:45:01] the truth. [01:45:05] be told, I just typed [01:45:11] in Why did he stop by? Was there a, you know, I said, I'm gonna do this 10 times. And then Yeah. [01:45:20] You know, by the enemy was very much in his office hours. And I think, you know, I was there for a lot of 40 minutes or whatever, do 15 minutes in the 10 minutes off or whatever. And that never went back. But I wasn't, he wrote to me about the medical student, and I wrote him about what I should do in life. [01:45:43] So after that third treatment, what were your thoughts on on the two types of treatment? [01:45:55] my notes made at the time, I've said to myself far ahead. Electric Shock would have been more effective in the long run, then the rosier treatment. That I mean, run, all I can say is, thank God, I didn't follow that up. Because I mean, all it was all it was going to do was Leave me, frankly, sexually neutral. Or to the point where I was so screwed up that I couldn't function sexually without fear and punishment. And that, you know, that had never been part of my approach to exercising my sexuality. I didn't think God was going to punish me. And although I thought the law might, I didn't, you know, I'm so glad that that didn't work out. Because really to be to be Lyft, or sexually neutral would be pretty cool. Thank [01:46:57] so what do you think the lasting fix or vision therapy has been on you? [01:47:09] I've already said that. I wonder whether that whole that whole period has been part of blue or in some memories. [01:47:19] Not really with it. So [01:47:22] the the suspicion of someone who'd been in lasted for a while, but was never a major issue. And I sin Lyft. Nathan, anyway, I still won't have a glass of whiskey. And the Lastly, Victor's I gave it a go. That's what society in the church asked of me. I tried, it hasn't worked, it was never likely to work. I'm quite sure that my sexual orientation is then built, whether it was pre birth or an early relationship, I haven't chosen this. It's me. It's the way I am going on with it. And I felt that I was I was cleared to get on with that by having given it a go. [01:48:19] And [01:48:21] I suppose in one or two situations since modern personal ones, but perhaps during war for the fact that I was able to say, a lot society. This is what you asked me to do to train chain, I gave my best shot, it didn't work. I assure that it wouldn't work for me or for anyone else. Now, we move on to another subject. So quite profound, little in a way. I mean, as people got on film partners and look with them without their but given given the church background, the family background, the feeling that they'd expected, the South may have risen to the occasion, it hadn't worked. And now trying to live life as a gay man, do it as decently as you could. [01:49:21] It's interesting, because as we've been talking, you have been referring back to notes that you've obtained from the hospital and research that you've downloaded from the internet. So you've obviously still kept an active interest in or or trying to discover more about what happens vaping. [01:49:40] Yeah. Is that is that certainly so? That's partly because, to the best of my knowledge, and I joked about an official information request. But to my knowledge, I haven't heard of anyone else in New Zealand, [01:49:57] having undergone that particular therapy. [01:50:01] Lots of gay people have been a therapist of one sort or another, but I haven't heard of anyone else. And that that's only that I've tuned in to use overseas that as as really encouraged me to sort of keep up a sort of academic interest still being used for alcoholism and gambling. I don't know what else paedophilia I think they might be. The only other possibility we talked about, you know, group therapy and psychotherapy and so forth. And I mean, some advocates also talk about chemical castration. [01:50:33] Do you think your research over the over the years has changed your view on what you went through? [01:50:46] know only a certain resentment a basil James. Because a Russian a Briton of the pace in the medical journal from 1962 is really a break it What a wonderful thing muscles. And of course, most of search every sentence is all what a waste of time I think the government somewhere yet of the failure, right? Every cases, but the failure rate was something like 99% forgot, which is exactly what I would expect. And I mean, no surprise that there was a single person who was perhaps different motivation and different heterosexual experience might actually have been able to shift enough. [01:51:38] So I received bezel James about really bad, but people say would you know it wasn't voluntary? Well, yes, it was I say da, it was explained to me failing squarely and I said, I'll give it a go. [01:51:55] Whatever happened to bezel James? [01:51:58] I think last time I tuned, he was some very senior health authority in Queensland. And I think he went on to be director of mental health in New Zealand. And then last time I saw the beginning on now, because he was the older than me, so it'd be in his 80s. Now, I think. [01:52:25] And what are your thoughts now on the church asking you to undertake something like this? [01:52:35] Well, it was reason. I mean, I don't think the church asked me to do the version therapy, the church asked me to address the problem. Can I make that distinction? The particular way in which I ended up addressing that was I mean, I don't think the bishop, for example, would hit the sleep study, leave and head of vision therapy, the parish priests certainly that I mean, nor better. leavers just support a minute. But I mean, all he was asking in the beginning was for me to talk to the student health psychiatrist about the issue. And I happened to strike vessel James, who had a been has been vision therapy. [01:53:19] Do you have any final reflections on on the therapy and you're, you're going through? [01:53:25] Only that? [01:53:28] You know, I thought it was medieval, I thought was barbaric, scientifically suspect. I now think it was all those things, scientifically suspect inexcusable. A major breach of human rights and medical effects. And I would certainly never undergo it again. And I would be absolutely appalled and quite vocal. If I ever learned that a younger person was being encouraged to undertake the same therapy.

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