Conversion therapy seeks to change a person’s sexual orientation. No mental health professional in their right mind conducts this type of therapeutic intervention anymore, because it is understood that sexual orientation is immutable from a very young age. Gender identity, however—whether someone feels masculine or feminine—is flexible in prepubescent children and grows more stable into adulthood.
Therapy that seeks to help gender dysphoric children grow comfortable in their birth sex (known in the research literature as the “therapeutic approach”) has been conflated with conversion therapy, but this is inaccurate. All of the available research following gender dysphoric children longitudinally shows that the majority desist; they outgrow their feelings of dysphoria by puberty and grow up to be gay in adulthood, not transgender.
Read more at QUILLETTE.