Recently, Reddit user “versiontwopointzero” conducted an interview with a man named Dean who was Castrated in 1970 at the age of 17. Like many young men at the time, Dean was forced to undergo the procedure because he identified as gay. “His story illustrates an important and mostly forgotten era when so many young men were castrated against their will (or after being convinced to go through with the procedure by parents, doctors and therapists) in the prime of their youth simply for the way they were born,” user “versiontwopointzero” writes. ”The upside is Dean is content being castrated (and would even go through the procedure again if given the choice) and does not regret receiving treatment for what was considered his serious condition in 1970.” Safe to say, the interview is as eye-opening as it is illuminating, offering some insight into a dark era in time that’s seemingly been forgotten. Read on below as we share some of the highlights.
Castration. Also known as gonadectomy, Castration is any action — surgical or chemical — by which a person loses use of the testicles, according to Slate. While surgical castration involves excision of both testes (which produce 95 percent of a man’s testosterone), chemical castration uses pharmaceutical drugs to deactivate the area.
Castration. Overall, the procedure causes sterilization, and significantly reduces the production of specific hormones, including testosterone. In females, the term is sometimes also used to refer to the removal of the ovaries, otherwise known as an oophorectomy.
Castrated at 17. During the interview, Dean opens up about why he was castrated at the age of 17. He said: “I had my orchiectomy when I was 17. This was a decision made by my psychiatrist, my parents and me. Or more specifically, after I’d been going to therapy for several months, my psychiatrist Dr. Johnson (ironic name) had a discussion with my father about the castration surgery he wanted for me. My father gave his permission, and Dr. Johnson had a discussion with me about the surgery.”
The therapist. While Dean did experience “homosexual feelings” before his castration, his “therapeutic castration,” he insists, greatly eliminated those desires. “My castration was presented to me as one part of my larger ongoing therapy which began months before my surgery and went on for eight months afterwards,” he explained. “I was never told that being castrated would cure my homosexuality, just that it would lesson my impulses and urges.”
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