Sex addicted? Or are you just gay?

Counselors are using "sex addiction" as a way to mask practicing conversion therapy on young men.

Sex addicted? Or are you just gay?
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In this week's newsletter: How counselors use sex addiction to change people's sexuality; San Diego's gay bars targeted in shooting; Anti-"grooming" bill signed into law by Gov. Hobbs; And a brand new Out of the Closet to win free swag!

SEX ON THE MIND: The term "sex addiction" brings to mind salacious stories of celebrities caught cheating and forced into rehab centers to address their infidelity. But it's also being used to treat people who are queer.

"Sex addiction" is not a recognized diagnosis by the American Psychiatric Association—nor is any kind of sexual addiction promoted by self-described “sex addiction counselors”—but that hasn’t stopped therapists in Arizona from using it to push conversion therapy practices.

Alongside our news partners at the Arizona Mirror and KJZZ radio, LOOKOUT identified at least three therapists who previously advertised that they practiced conversion therapy and describe themselves as sex or porn addiction specialists. And some of those are working with teenagers. 

WHAT WE'RE KEEPING AN EYE ON: For the past four months, LOOKOUT has been diving deep into the world of conversion therapy in Arizona.

We've exposed the world on conversion therapy at a practice in Mesa, Ariz., revealed a new form of conversion therapy that avoids legal scrutiny from an executive order signed by the governor, and called out the state's licensing board for not addressing the accreditation of people who practice conversion therapy, despite violating their code of ethics.

As a result, our reporter—and LOOKOUT—has been served with a cease and desist from one of the family practices to limit our reporting on this subject.

We have started hearing back from people who have survived conversion therapy, and we'd like to learn more from you. If you or someone you know has experienced this kind of predatory treatment in Arizona, feel free to reply back to this newsletter. Your information will be kept confidential.

This kind of news is expensive to produce. But we will never charge you for it.
LOOKOUT does queer news different. We believe in the power of accountability journalism, and not treating LGBTQ+ news as sensational, only worthy of coverage when something bad happens to one of us, or when it's Pride month. Instead, we believe that all aspects of our lives are important to cover, from education to public safety. But we need your support. Click here to become a recurring donor.

  • GAYMBER NEWS: Tucson's LGBTQ+ Business Chamber, also known as "The Gaymber," has hired a new executive director. Inside Tucson Business
  • LEFT BEHIND: The Council for National Policy, a far-right Christian group founded by one of the "Left Behind" series creators Tim LaHaye, has some significant ties to Arizona policymakers. Arizona Mirror
  • GROOMER BILL: An "anti-grooming" bill posited by lawmakers as a way to stop predatory actions against children has multiple LGBTQ+ groups worried about its vague language and possible outcomes with sex education. Gov. Katie Hobbs signed the bill last week. ACLU Arizona
  • LET'S TALK ABOUT SEX: LOOKOUT reporter Shelby Rae Wills is seeking feedback from students and parents on sex education. Their series is looking into what’s being taught, and if it’s enough. If you’re a student, recent student, or parent in Arizona, please take our survey.
    Student survey here.
    Parent survey here.

  • SAN DIEGO ATTACKS: A group of LGBTQ+ bars in San Diego were targeted by people who shot pellet guns at patrons outside. Police won't say what the motivations were. Los Angeles Blade
  • GLOBAL WARNING: The U.S. State Department issued a warning for travelers leaving the states for Pride festivals. Politico
  • MADE BY AND FOR US: A political action committee aims to double the number of LGBTQ+ representatives in Congress. The Advocate


Have a community event coming up you want LOOKOUT to highlight? Email us.

  • Thurs. May 23 - Come to a new kind of comedy night, focused on being funny and not offensive, at The Womack. Info
  • Sat. May 25 - YumBar is hosting a Slow Yoga Flow with Your Health and Wellness and the gals from Monsoon Market. Info
  • Tues. May 28 - Pump some iron with the folks at Every Body Lifting Club. Info
  • Sat June 1 - Come find LOOKOUT at Tempe Pride to get some free swag! Info
  • Sun. June 2 - Marigold and Afternoons Studios are hosting Sunday Stories. Info
  • Tues. June 4- Chandler Pride is hosting the Queer Human Library, a storytelling event for the queer community. Info
  • Sat. June 8 - Queer AF hosts a Pride Party at Hotel Congress. Info
  • Sat. June 8 - The Tucson Interfaith HIV/AIDS Network fundraiser is being held at the Desert Diamond Hotel and Casino. Info


Without the LGBTQ+ community, there’s less meaning. Guess the word below with only the support of the letters L, G, B, T, Q, I, A and submit your answer to be entered into our monthly drawing for exclusive LOOKOUT swag. The more times you play, the more chances you get to win! The next drawing will be May 30.

B_ _

Hint: The name of one of the organizers for Phoenix Pride's first parade. (Another hint: Her name is used for one of the Phoenix Pride Spirit Awards. LOOKOUT was nominated for that namesake award this year.)

Last Week's Answer: Western Express

Jamie H. (Phoenix); Sheila K. (Phoenix); Bruce A. (Gilbert); Marissa F. (Mesa); Ed B. (Prescott)

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