Aversion therapy, shock therapy, harassment and occasional physical abuse. Soon after, I had to make a short visit to Chechnya to restore some documents. TC was subjected to conversion therapy in when he was 15 years old after his parents discovered he was gay. Journalists at the Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, which first reported the story, say they have incontrovertible evidence that at least three gay men have been killed since the operation started, and believe the full death toll could be much higher. I would have taken all these problems with me to the grave. In fact, until the s when many conversion therapists began openly marketing their services, most professional organizations did not comment on the practice.
The men with whom the Guardian spoke said they had never told a single family member or non-gay friend about their sexuality.
Chechens tell of prison beatings and electric shocks in anti-gay purge: ‘They called us animals’
Some are believed to have been killed. In the long-term, the negative health consequences of being subjected to conversion therapy are extremely serious and can include substance abuse, dropping out of school, HIV infection, depression, and suicide attempts. Many are in hiding from both their families and the authorities. Adam was held in an informal detention facility with more than a dozen other gay men, who were all subjected to torture on a daily basis. You bring shame on our people; you shouldn't exist.
The only area they didn't hit was my face. In most cases, he has no idea if people are in hiding, still being held captive, or dead. TC, a year-old gay man who spoke to The Huffington Post anonymously for this article in order to protect his safety, is a survivor of conversion therapy practices. Later, he managed to escape from Russia and is now seeking asylum in a European country. One night shortly after, he collected a few belongings and left his home without saying a word to anyone, aiming to get as far away from Chechnya as possible.