meet Egypt’s ex-gay therapist Heba Kotb

While things are in turmoil in Egypt and the news are all over the events I chose to divert my attention to an Egyptian sex therapist who is a feverish proponent of ex-gay therapy (one of many unscientific things she promotes).

Like her US-American and European ex-gay pendants she favours scripture over science and evidence based medicine. She claims that she cured several homosexuals (by the sound of it all male) despite the fact there is no evidence that so-called conversion therapy works regardless of who administers it and she herself didn’t have the thoughtfulness to document those changes in a case study (pubmed doesn’t find any papers authored by her on the topic of homosexuality). Yet there have been many reports of harmful side effects of conversion therapy in the scientific literature; but Mrs Kotb doesn’t address a single issue but that can very well be attributed to her afore-mentioned dislike of facts.

When reading the interview with her closely on immediately stumbles across her wording that she doesn’t “believe” in something, that her religion is against something (so it has to be wrong), she personally is against something, in her personal opinion (which isn’t supported by evidence) some things aren’t right.

Given her personal belief that her opinion automatically defines reality she thinks of homosexuality as not natural or normal (this is why she “cured” some gays). Because she really likes her personal opinion so much she even goes so far to compare homosexuality to  addictions.

But if you considered yourself lucky because you’re straight and Mrs Kotb hasn’t yet said anything negative about your sexual orientation or sexuality, beware!  Mrs Kotb has also some advice for you which includes to avoid masturbation if you’re female (she doesn’t say anything about males masturbating but I got the feeling that Kotb somehow personally doesn’t like males to masturbate either) and to avoid anal sex regardless of the sex of the people involved (that’s not only prohibited by Mrs Kotb’s religion but she may also think it a bit gay and this makes it completely yucky for her personally).

So a quick summary of Mrs Kotb’s advice as a healthcare professional: just don’t do anything that she personally dislikes and you’ll have a fantastic sex life. Sounds exactly like a therapist I would consult if I ever needed some professional help & advice.

The most shocking thing about Mrs Kotb’s views are that she spent time in the USA to study the subject from a doctor’s perspective. It is safe to conclude that Mrs Kotb hasn’t learnt anything has therefore wasted everyone’s time (including her own) and university resources. Where’s the point in going abroad to study if you insist that your own opinion is ultimately right?

Though she had another big insult to add. This time aimed at the US approach to human sexuality. In her interview she has to emphasize that she personally doesn’t like the US approach at all (clever choice to pick the US as the place to pursue further studies by the way) and then goes on to insinuate that the USA allows everything with regards to sexuality. I love to break the good news to Mrs Kotb: all US states clearly outlaw sexual contacts with anyone under the age of consent (though there are some differences in the age of consent) and all sexual contacts must be between consenting individuals.  – To be fair Mrs Kotb didn’t mention anything specific about minors but insinuating that all kinds of sexual acts & contacts are allowed in US territories is a gross insult. Especially given the fact that this Egyptian woman has had nothing specific to criticise about Egyptian customs or the Egyptian approach to sex (other than the occasional bad sex) despite the fact that Egyptian authoroties are known to do absolutely nothing to end the widespread sexual abuse of children which has been the case even before the revolution. As of 2009 83% of Egyptian women and 98% of foreign women report the have fallen victim of sexual offences in Egypt. I’d be grateful if someone who has figures for the US could share those figures though I suspect that the US figures are very likely to be significantly lower than those for Egypt.

The only explanation I have for the fact that Mrs Kotb has claimed that the US-American attitude permits all kinds of sexual contacts is that in Mrs Kotb personally doesn’t like the USA to have those kinds of (criminal) laws and she then again confused her personal opinion with reality. Her silence on the topic of the widespread sexual offences in Egypt may also be explained that she personally thinks that those offences are not taking place and therefore those offences can’t be real.

On the other hand given the current climate in Egypt she’ personally is unlikely to do any further harm right now. And that’s about the only good thing I can think of about the situation in Egypt currently.


About Kim Karlstein

Member of the gay conspiracy in one of the regional offices in the UK. The conspiracy you lately constantly heard about. Other than plotting how to take over world I have fairly normal hobbies. My gravatar is taken with thanks from wikimedia commons.
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