Heterosexist Bias in the DSM

The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), currently in its fifth edition as of 2013, describes the origins, etiology, and treatment of mental disorders. Today, the DSM is used by a variety of mental health professionals including psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, and counselors in the United States as a guide for treating patients with mental disorders. Earlier versions of the DSM received criticism over its heterosexist bias, which refers to the favoring of heterosexuality over all other forms of sexuality, particularly as it relates to its classification of homosexuality as a mental disorder.

Homosexuality as a Mental Disorder

The earliest example of heterosexist bias in the DSM was seen in the original version of the manual published in 1952 that classified ...

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