Safe spaces, love unfeigned, Rogerian psychotherapy, Same-Sex Attraction, LDS, Humanistic Psychology


In this paper, we explore the concept of a genuinely “safe space,” what it might mean, and how such a concept is usually understood in both the discipline of psychology and the larger culture. Further, we explore some of the potential pitfalls that must be avoided in seeking to establish a “safe space” for members of the LDS Church who experience same-sex attraction (SSA) that is in harmony with the restored gospel. We will argue that one of the most serious potential threats to any effort to create a genuinely safe space for Church members who experience SSA is to understand the nature of tolerance and safety in the conceptual terms offered in humanistic psychology and psychotherapy, particularly as articulated in the foundational work of Carl Rogers. We argue that because it is founded on a number of problematic assumptions antithetical to the central tenets of the restored gospel as we understand them, Rogerian psychology actually encourages us to adopt certain assumptions that lead away from revealed truth and the richer, deeper relationship with one another and Christ that such truth provides.