I’ve always thought that a better way to sell conversion therapy is that instead of turning a homosexual into pure straight, that they would just try to attain bisexuality. This wouldn’t require sexual attraction to be unlearned, which seems a hard goal to attain, but merely to expand sexual attraction to the opposite sex.
To use a metaphor, you can’t unlearn a language you know, but you can learn a new language.
From a Christian point of view, you just want people to be able to function in a happy opposite sex marriage, and this only requires bisexuality, not a total absence of same sex desire. From a leftist point of view, expanding sexual options is easier to defend than suppressing sexual desire.
Is it possible to expand sexual attraction in this way? Here’s one obvious example:
Men learn to find older women attractive as they themselves get older. Very few teenage boys find 45 year old women attractive, but many 45 year old men learn to adapt themselves. Social pressure plays a big role in this – older men are expected and pressured into finding older women attractive and are also very strongly discouraged from acting on their attraction to much younger women.
I think this a process of expanding sexual attraction – men never stop finding 18 year old girls attractive, but they learn to find older women attractive too (to some degree), like learning a new language.
So this seems a clear cut case of social expectations manipulating sexual attraction, and doing so in a socially constructive way.
And it’s one feminists will have hard time arguing against. They are already committed to the idea that beauty is socially constructed, and they hate it when older men pursue younger women.
To a lesser extant race is another example, I think many men have had the experience of learning to appreciate the beauty of women of various races. You’ll hear men describe how they had never noticed, say, Asian women, until one beautiful Asian girl came along and from then on they kept noticing others. This is a learning process, once you learn it you don’t usually unlearn it. Race isn’t as big a difference as sex, but it’s something.