Carys Moseley looks at recent ‘guidance’ from BACP on who is a woman: Published by Christian Concern
Last Sunday, it was reported that the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP), the largest professional organisation for counsellors in the UK, has published ‘guidance’ on who is a woman. It was written by a transgender/non-binary activist who was born female called Meg-John Barker, a senior lecturer in psychology at the Open University. This person uses the third gender pronoun ‘they’ rather than the correct female pronoun ‘she’, due to refusing to be known as a woman.
The guidance said:
“It is important not to assume, for example, that being a woman necessarily involves being able to bear children, or having XX sex chromosomes, or breasts.”
It is screamingly obvious what is going on here. Transgender activists have been allowed to take over and redefine reality according to their own propaganda.
The BACP is a signatory to the Memorandum of Understanding on Conversion Therapy in the UK, which was last updated in October 2017 to prohibit therapists from attempting to bring about a change or suppression of gender identity. What this really means is a ban on members of the signatory bodies attempting to help clients change their sense of identity to live more in harmony with their biological sex.
More importantly, the government has said that it wants to ban such therapies completely, whereas at present only members of the professional bodies which have signed the memorandum are banned from offering them. The BACP redefinition of women- and by implication men – is a sign of things to come, namely that the government may force unregulated counsellors and therapists to lie about who is male or female.
The BACP is said to have apologised – but only for the offence caused, not for the fact that women and men were redefined to mean whatever transgender activists want them to mean, which is ideas floating around in some people’s heads.
The BACP went on to say that it is revising this ‘guidance’ and contacting ‘specialists’ to accomplish this task. The truth is there is no need to have any such ‘guidance’ at all, as we all know that men and women are so by virtue of their biology. The only reason for written guidance is to enshrine the lies and nonsense of the transgender movement at the heart of training for counsellors and therapists.
This is the result of banning ‘conversion therapies’
The BACP claims, without evidence, that ‘conversion therapy’ for gender identity is harmful. But the BACP fails to apologise properly for the actual harm caused to women by its own guidance – only apologising that it offended some people. Its apology was purely aimed at saving face, due to many women expressing anger and exasperation over the guidance.
Not only is BACP inconsistent, and indeed hypocritical here, it is by virtue of this privileging transgender and LGBT ideologies over objective biological reality. This is not good for mental healthcare, for it is well-known that mental health is improved by attending to physical health. Privileging fantasies in one’s head which contradict physical reality is the very epitome of madness. Mental health is far less likely to be achieved and maintained if people live in total contradiction to the actual form and design of their bodies, which is what living a transgender lifestyle involves.
The UK government supports this ban and is looking at ways of strengthening it. This should not be surprising for after all it is the government that has pushed legislation enshrining the concept of ‘psychological sex’ (gender) in law and public policy. The result is that the dishonest propaganda that being male or female is a state of mind rather than a biological fact from conception is being disseminated throughout the public sector and all parts of the third sector that have ties to government.
Counselling and psychotherapy are being brought into disrepute
Lying about who is a man or woman – and forcing everybody else to do so – is at the core of transgender ideology and the transsexual rights movement that preceded it and has enabled it. It is impossible to reconcile this with good mental health care and pastoral care. The truth is that counselling and psychotherapy are being brought into disrepute by this ‘guidance’.
Meanwhile a search through the BACP’s directory of therapists reveals a number of them will say they are open to working with ‘people of all sexualities and gender identities’, with some being ‘kink aware’, etc. Nothing about ex-gays or detransitioners here.
Regulation of counsellors and psychotherapists – in whose interests?
There are good grounds for arguing that it is a long history of government involvement that has inadvertently paved the way for this catastrophe. Individual counsellors were allowed to join the British Association for Counselling, as it was originally called, when it was founded in 1977 via a grant from the Home Office Voluntary Service Unit.
In 2013 the Department of Health set up a scheme for accrediting the registration of counsellors and psychotherapists, and BACP’s existing voluntary register was the first to receive accreditation. It must comply with the requirements of the Professional Standards Authority, which is accountable to Parliament. This means that the whole system is vulnerable to the whims of politicians and especially of the government of the day, as it has the majority of MPs. This is dangerously unsuitable to the running of an organisation which deals with confidential discussions about personal problems.
The problem here is that government involvement is eroding the independence of counselling and therapy – even in the private sector – from the state, and thus eroding free speech in these fields. The alarming reality is that counsellors and therapists are mostly not speaking against this. Are they blind to the problems? Or just scared of being kicked out and blacklisted?
Private member’s bill to ban ‘conversion therapies’ due for second reading
The MP for Swansea West, Geraint Davies (Labour), has tabled a private member’s bill in Parliament to regulate counsellors and therapists and outlaw ‘conversion therapies’. Its second reading is scheduled for Friday 26 October 2018.
This bill would outlaw therapy to help people move away from transgender identification and thoughts about themselves to living in harmony with their biological sex. This would be catastrophic on so many fronts as I have previously explained here and here. The bill must be defeated at all costs.
Time to confront the failure of counsellors and psychotherapists to stand up
The time has come for the field of counselling and psychotherapy to be confronted over its failure to challenge the government’s aggressive promotion of transgender ideology. Professional bodies have ganged up together viciously to produce and promote the Memorandum of Understanding which is now making more and more people very worried and angry.
If such a confrontation does not take place, counselling and psychotherapy will lose their integrity and their credibility; becoming little more than propaganda mouthpieces for the government. This lying nonsense about ‘woman’ or ‘man’ being a state of mind proves that this is already happening. It is vulnerable clients and conscientious counsellors and therapists, and through them the whole of society, that will suffer the consequences.