Aggregated reviews for UnErased: The History of Conversion Therapy in America

Over 700,000 people in America have been subjected to conversion therapy, the dangerous and controversial ex-gay treatment. UnErased tells their stories.

I cried a little while listening   (5/5)

Great podcast binged the whole thing

I binged this one..   (5/5)

I can’t believe it’s all done. Now I’ll watch the movie. Amazing podcast and it might even save someone’s life.

Great   (5/5)

It left me wanting more, but that doesn’t mean it was lacking. I think it was a great podcast.

Meh at best.   (2/5)

Although an interesting subject - I was left wishing there was more. Like Dolly Patton’s America - that is the extent that I felt this podcast could have been but failed to do.

Heartbreaking and gorgeous   (5/5)

Made me cry. Each story is so fascinating and told in a way that is complex. I loved it

Sunshine is the best disinfectant   (5/5)

This was a thoughtful and thorough investigation into the disturbing and discredited practice of conversion therapy that continues to scourge LGBTQ people to this day, especially of children by their parents. Pieces like this are essential to advancing the cause of human rights, and this podcast presents facts and eyewitness accounts in an accessible and well-organized manner. Hopefully more journalistic exploration like this will help us finally ban the torturous practice of conversion therapy.

Fascinating and sad   (4/5)

I’m so glad that the terrible practice of reparative therapy is being exposed. So many have suffered, and it’s not right. It was interesting to find out the history behind it and the complicate legacy of those involved.

Heart-wrenching and thought-provoking   (4/5)

Please listen no matter what your creed, sex, age, sexual orientation, religion, and history.

I wish episode #4 was erased.   (1/5)

As someone who was also exposed to John Schmid and the sick cult he ran, I would have appreciated him not being included in the victims of his abuse finally having a voice. When Kevin Spacey was outed for abusing young men, his career ended and no one wants to hear from him. Young men committed suicide in John’s care, and his response on episode 4 “I can’t be held responsible for the families who chose this therapy for their kids.” Sick. When John openly shares that his now husband had never kissed another man until him, it made my skin crawl. It sounded predatory yet right in line with how John has approached his entire life.

Drags out   (3/5)

Very. Slow. Moving. Script. It’s an interesting story, but for many gay men like me I’ve heard it all before. This very slow moving podcast does little to keep me engaged. Perhaps if it had been one episode instead of four it would have moved better. Or maybe this is for straight people who have never heard of this kind of abuse.

Atrocious coverage of John Smid   (1/5)

The last episode ruined the whole series for me. Speaking as a lesbian, here’s my answer to the podcast’s big question: No, John Smid has not adequately accepted responsibility. In a full 51-minute episode, the closest thing to an apology we get is him basically saying, “boo hoo, I can’t handle the guilt so I tell myself it wasn’t my fault people killed themselves.” It was irresponsible reporting to not include any commentary from those of us in the LGBT community who expect more from Smid. Shame on the producers for suggesting that the hardship Smid suffered could ever justify the abuse he inflicted on others.

Thank you for including Christians like me   (5/5)

I grew up in a welcoming church and have been part of several churches with LGBT members and clergy. Christians like us are rarely represented in popular culture or the news so I appreciate that we are included in this story.

More!!! ❤️❤️🏳️‍🌈🏳️‍🌈🏳️‍🌈   (5/5)

Love this! i want more. interviews with lots of LGBTQAI people!

It’s love   (5/5)

I have a gay son who came out in his 20’s, although we knew much earlier. He was bullied in grade school, so we tried to reach out but he denied it. We would be ready when he was ready. He is the love of our lives and I can’t quit crying over the love loss for these men and women who’s parents couldn’t see beyond. God bless the individuals who came forward with their testimony.

I’m a lesbian and I’m   (5/5)

As a young woman who grew up in Southeast Oklahoma and northeast Texas. I feel that shame and guilt and hatred that I have heard on this podcast. I grew up in church, hearing that “god hates gays” and other like terms. I pushed it so far back into my mind that I honestly thought the feelings I was having were normal. Once I went to college and started finding myself, I realized that I was not “normal”. I still felt like I was wrong, that everything I was feeling was wrong. It’s taken me so long to really accept myself. Yet still in the back of my mind there was little slivers of guilt. After listening to the podcast I truly feel whole and happy with my sexuality. All of the fears and conflicts I had are gone. I KNOW God doesn’t hate me, and made exactly the way he wants me. If all of these people can come to terms with it, so can I. I’m now proud of my orientation, and have all of these brave and amazing men and women to thank, for making a world where I can KNOW; in know uncertain terms that “ITS OKAY TO BE GAY!

Amazing   (5/5)

I don’t care if you are gay, straight or questioning. Listen to this podcast. It’s educational and heart felt. I have cried, laughed and learned so much. Thank you for doing all this. This podcast is needed.

Wonderful   (5/5)

What more can I say?

Anything Jad touches is gold. This is an amazing series!!   (5/5)

Thought provoking and full of love.

A tear jerker. And a must listen   (5/5)

These stories are amazing. Great to learn about this and I really enjoyed each episode. The momma bears made me cry, laugh and restored a bit of faith in humanity. Got to love moms being moms to anyone who needs one. Thank you for these podcasts.

Amazing   (5/5)

Thank you

👏   (5/5)

This show has taught me so much- as a future therapist, perhaps former Christian, and as a human. Thank you. Would LOVE it if you folks did more episodes but also I should probably watch the movie.

Smid   (5/5)

Listening to this guy talk was incredibly frustrating. He shows zero remorse, takes no accountability, and has nothing but performative nonsense to say for his really messed up actions. We all struggle with shame; not all of us methodically destroy people’s lives for 25 years to make ourselves feel bigger and better. I don’t care about his backstory, and I’m not moved by his lame explanations. Not sure that he deserves any kind of platform at all.

Truly a great listen!   (5/5)

This podcast is AMAZING. It is extremely well written, thought provoking, and refreshing. Please give it a listen.

Phenomenal!   (5/5)

Phenomenal podcast. I'm not unfamiliar with co version therapy, having grown up in the church and having worked in Christian higher ed. But the detailed narrative here provided a lot of new information. As expected, the complexity of the storytelling is the podcast series' great strength. There are no simple answers here. Loved it!

Mama Dragon loves this podcast!   (5/5)

I am a Mama Dragon- we are a Facebook group of moms with LGBTQIA children who love and support each other while we love and support our kids. This series has been so fascinating to listen to. Amazing interviews with the people in the early days who were trying to find a new path for those who were not accepted or supported as they were. I am so grateful for all of these people who have made the world a safe and healthy for our children. Thank you for this podcast!!

So important   (5/5)

I am a new therapist and was completely moved by this podcast. I was not aware that this was still happening. It has opened my eyes. I am also a Christian and do not hold those beliefs that many help in this series. This really got me thinking and I love the moms bears. I am going to share this with everyone!


I am looking forward to seeing Boy Erased (I live outside the US and it's not always easy to find a movie at a theater) but the first episode is basically a retelling of the movie / book! There are even many clips from the movie. Otherwise, it's an important topic to know about - for everyone. It's produced very well. I will listen to the rest later.

Challenge   (1/5)

I am a Christian as well. Lemme start by saying it is wrong to bully or discriminate or harass etc a person based on race religion ethnicity sexuality etc. however, lemme reiterate that saying the penalty for sinning is eternity in Hell, homosexuality is a sin isn’t hate or such things like that and it’s against Christianity to do so that it is judging! It is in the Bible that marriage is between one man and one woman and a man that lays with another man is a sinner. It’s in the Bible. It is Leviticus 20:13. You’re welcome on that part. Now, I challenge any of you to try and tell me anywhere in the Bible where it says gay marriage is right. Go.

Amazing!   (5/5)

Loved this series so much. Binge listened to it in one day. Best podcast series since S-town. Must listen if you’re interested in lgbtq history and issues.

Sad   (5/5)

It breaks my heart. Why are they doing this? Breaking them will lead to nothing. Can't we just accept for who they are?

Mixed feelings   (3/5)

REALLY dislike the solid 2 minutes of ads in the beginning of each episode. I feel this series has good intent, but may stray from actually telling the stories of those who have gone through conversion therapy and give more of a voice to that of the oppressor. I did like the Mama Bears episode, and admire what they do now, but why spend so much time on how they had to come to terms with their childrens' sexuality?? Boo hoo for them! Much more traumatic for their LGBT children, and the podcast should have given the voice to them.

Loved it and so enlightening   (5/5)

Amazing podcast and the mama bear episode really hit me. If anything I’m maybe bisexual but I just appreciate hearing a literal translation of a bible verse that is so widely open to interpretation. Thank you

Green shoots of hope in an increasingly dark world   (5/5)

This podcast is beautiful: particularly episode 2 about the Mama Bears. It’s beautiful and a welcome spring of love and hope.

Important subject; but...   (4/5)

Please note that this series focuses on religious and shame based conversion therapy. There are other voluntary therapies out there for men (often married men) who wish to reduce gay attraction. Most often childhood trauma is found that when resolved reduces the attraction. My “Hidden Truth Show” podcast interviews experts on the subject in a deep dive I did into transgender. Important listen to complement this podcast. :)

Directionless   (2/5)

I really wanted to love this podcast, but it fell so short. First episode was engrossing and I wanted to delve deeper, however, this team took no real hard stance when talking to John Smid. Was there no questioning his material wealth built upon the suicides of these gay men? While I loved the Mama Bears, I really wanted to listen to the story of the first mom’s son. It just felt fractured and directionless.

Very helpful sad there are only four   (5/5)

I ate this podcast so good. So helpful. Thank you!

A Great Look Into Difficult Subject Matter   (5/5)

As with most things Jad Abumrad is involved with, this is a brilliantly produced podcast. The subject matter is extremely difficult in this polarizing political environment, but bringing in the specific human stories behind the headlines makes all the difference. Thank you for shedding light on this tragic story.

Wow   (5/5)

This is a really captivating podcast. I thank Jad Aburmad for picking an almost taboo topic and presenting gay lives as worthy of respect, dignity, and inclusion. Much too often we hear the Religious Right (aka the tyranny of the majority) mock, isolate, call to criminalize and void, stigmatize LGBT and marriage equality. Actually, this podcast is much more interesting, I think, than the latest episdoes of Radio Lab and More Perfect, his other podcasts.

Amazing Podcast   (5/5)

Absolutely phenomenal podcast. The in-depth perspective this 4-part series delivers gives the listener an honest and frank understanding of conversion therapy in America. The last episode is by far the most surprising and well worth the time to listen to.

John Smid   (5/5)

Great series but this guy needs to shut up and go away. He has done tremendous harm over the years and I don’t want to hear a thing he has to say. He gets WAY to much air time in this series.

Powerful.   (5/5)

Powerful to summarize into one word. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in San Diego. This is still a very relevant issue everywhere and in every family. This podcast brought me to tears many times. Hearing the stories of people who have lost their families whether they are LGBTQ or family that support their LGBTQ loved ones; it is heartbreaking. I felt this podcast was very well developed and hearing from all areas of this controversial issue is what made this so well researched and powerful. I think the biggest take away is being willing and open to hear other ideas, theologies and beliefs- that is what changes society, mindsets and ultimately saves lives. Listen to this podcast, please! LOVE IS LOVE!

Jad Makes Excuses for Destroyed Lives   (2/5)

John Smid killed young boys, and women. Jad, on behalf of the LGBT community, forgives him and gives him the platform upon which to blame the suicides and the trauma on the victims themselves. John Smid is a monster and destroyed lives. Jad is an apologist, and makes petty excuses. This is a new low, Jad. You’ve long been a moral relativist, priding yourself in your ability to look at all perspectives—even those of monstrous killers—but here you really go for the gold. Those young boys’ and girls’ blood is on his hands. And you shook his hand and let him duck and dodge responsibility. Sad, Jad. That’s really very sad.

Necessary   (5/5)

And very nice that the whole series was rolled out in time for Thanksgiving Weekend to foster family dialogues. Thanks again Jad!

Healing   (5/5)

So much of my trauma as a gay man—having grown up in the church, working for a church, then working for a national ministry for 12 years—yet not feeling accepted or welcomed, is being healed by listening to this podcast. The tears that run down my face today, are not familiar like the tears of shame and guilt I’ve cried, but tears of feeling heard, understood, and loved. Thank you for this gift.

This is a story that needs to be out there   (5/5)

What’s being told here is mind blowing if it isn’t something that you have personal experience with and needs to be heard by everyone.

Unerased   (5/5)

Every radio program Jad touches turns to gold: “radiolab” is my spouse, “more perfect” is my lover, and “unerased” is my gay best friend. Always compelling, always written with integrity.

The Overly Emotional Release Every Gay Needs   (5/5)

I listen to a lot of podcasts, and do a lot of reading of queer people experiences and just. I am in awe by this podcast. I find new things to feel great and awful about in every episode, but the Mama Bears episode made me cry listening. I have a relatively accepting family but just to hear that so many women are willing to truly change their lives and expand their knowledge of their God to allow more love in their lives makes me feel hope for our community and our families in the future.

Emotional roller coaster well worth the ride   (5/5)

Perhaps it is because this topic has deep implications for me and close friends, but this is some of the most heartening reporting I’ve heard in a long time. Un Erased does credit to podcasting as an art form.

Mama Bears   (5/5)

Me after listening to this episode: 😭😭😭

Long time coming   (5/5)

As someone who experienced Conversion Therapy, albeit, less focused on religion and more focused on Freudian themes- but still based in religious dogma, I am so thankful to have found this podcast!

Listen to THIS!   (5/5)

I can’t put into words how beautiful this podcast is. The love overshadows the hate.

Sooo good!   (5/5)

This podcast is so well researched and delightful to listen to. The production and storytelling makes a topic I feared would make me sad, be an adventure. Y’all are doing good.

Joyfully, Way more nuanced than I hoped.   (5/5)

I am an ex-ex-gay. I did some serious ex-gay therapy in the 90's and even attended the international conferences etc... I am still gay (and now out and proud) AND I am still Christian AND I am also now a trained theological ethicist who values nuance in difficult issues. So when the topic turns to ex-gay therapy, (AKA conversation therapy) and its affiliation with the Christian faith, I get nervous. Not because it isn’t the kind of conversation I welcome, I clearly do, but because I know I will probably have to wade through a hefty manure pile of gross over-generalizations of both gays and Christians and skewed reporting that happily re-presents cartoonish figures and asks very few interesting and helpful questions relevant to people who are neither gay nor Christian. So when Radiolab entered the foray, I was even more nervous because I adore Radiolab and would have hated watching them succumb to to reporting a story that lacks nuance, something they normally tend to handle very adeptly. The way these producers frame and enage the issues with a carefully reading of the book of Job signals that there wil probably be insights to glean here for all kinds of people of good will. In the second episode, they not only prove that they understand there is more than one side to a story, they actually help us see that sometimes stories are made up of more than just sides. Listen to this and let it feed your heart even as it surprises it.

Heart Warming   (4/5)

I appreciate all the information, and was shocked about what happens in these places. Very upsetting. But what brings the program full circle are the many personal stories from all angles, so beautiful to hear about the “Mama bears” l, and the other truly informative interpretations of the Bible.

made me cry   (5/5)

Thank you for telling these stories and educating the public about this issue. The story about the "Mama Bears" made me cry. Very moving.

Brilliant and compassionate   (5/5)

When a podcast brings you to tears you know you are making a difference in the world. So well done and educational too.

Excellent   (5/5)

Thank you for sharing such important information. I loved the Mama Bears episode. What an amazing gift these women offer. I praise them for their boldness. AndI really hope some Mama Bears stepped up to actively help the young man in Orange Co. Surely religion and ethnicity wouldn’t stand in the way of these courageous women.

Good job   (5/5)

I like the insertion of the movie clips. I have found the first two episodes to be very engaging and in lightning. Looking forward to the next one

Wowza!   (5/5)

Episode 2 was just heart wrenching. So well put together and not something I thought I’d relate to. And yet I did.

Mama Bears ❤️   (5/5)

Being gay or LGBT+ is NOT a sin. Listen to this podcast for a biblical explanation. I am a Mama Bear and Praise God for teaching us what true unconditional love is. We love our cubs unconditionally and will stand beside them when no one else will ❤️ God loves you

Important and transformational   (5/5)

As a member of the Free Mom Hugs and Mama Bear movements I feel this is an important and well presented topic. I am so thrilled to hear these women being interviewed, they are heros and educators in the history of our culture in this nation. It is educational, heartbreaking and uplifting to hear their stories.

Omg mama bears 😭❤️👏❤️💖🐻🌈   (5/5)

In tears so loved this!!

For the second episode   (5/5)

Is there any way that I could support the Mama bear group? Include fundraising or more publicity help? Any social media links and donation lines?

Love this!   (5/5)

Mama Bears to the Rescue is the only podcast episode I’ve ever listened to that made me cry happy tears. I loved hearing about how these women not only changed their minds about gender identity and homosexuality- but also got busy helping others. It makes me believe in humankind. Thanks and can’t wait for the next episode.

So far very interesting and important   (5/5)

I’m halfway through episode 2 right now and borderline brought to tears hearing some of this positivity and the other side of this issue. Fantastic reporting all around.

Important Subject Matter   (5/5)

In a time where it feels like half of our country is moving backwards, creating content that documents the harmful effects of conversion therapy is so important. Thank you for shedding a light on a topic that is so frequently swept under the rug and for doing it in a compelling and engrossing way.

Rich content   (5/5)

I really like the subject and the honesty. Keep it up guys. I’d love to collaborate. Lmk and keep bringing this rich content.

Wow.   (5/5)

Great first episode. Can’t wait to hear more. I know very little about conversion therapy, but as a committed God-lover and social justice warrior, this is right up my alley. Thank you Jad Abumrad and team for your excellent work.

Rachel   (5/5)

So glad this podcast is available. Not everyone who needs to hear it can get to the movie and this podcast is something they can actually hear! That’s awesome!! I’m so grateful this subject is being treated with emotion and love, not rhetoric and talking points. Thank you for making this podcast and the Boy Erased movie; it’s time to spread understanding and information so we can change the conversation to what matters.

I’m Sorry   (4/5)

I am a Christian and I love Jesus. I was born and raised in the church and I believe in God. This podcast makes me sad that as believers have been part of hurting people- creating more hurt within the family unit - and judging a person based on their sexuality. Please know that God loves you and I am so sorry for the hurtful things that Christians have said and done to you. I ask for your forgiveness.

Powerful presentation   (5/5)

Very well produced, insightful story of modern day tragedy that most cannot fathom, much less imagine. Given The complete and total lack of any scientific evidence that what they are doing has any positive benefit whatsoever, we are left with only one conclusion... the perpetrators are motivated by desire to rid the world of people unlike themselves... Dr Mengele would be proud.... AND this is only the first episode! This podcast can only get better..don’t miss it.

See This Film !   (4/5)

As an LGBTQ person, I know embarrassingly little about conversion therapy, so thank you for exploring more in depth this important and very timely issue. Having just come from seeing the film today, I’m glad to find this podcast, and also glad I listened after viewing: there are so many spoilers, I recommend seeing this film first, and soon as it’s a limited release, before giving this podcast a listen. Great interviewees and no, I have not read Gerard’s book, so all are very enlightening. Thank you and especially Gerard, and look forward to hearing Joel. Great movie, great work.

Too many movie clips   (2/5)

I’m very interested in this topic and enjoy hearing Garrard speak, but find the Podcast plays way too many clips from Boy Erased. I wanted to hear the story from the horse’s mouth, not listen to spoilers from movie I was looking forward to seeing.

Engrossing First Episode   (5/5)

A look into a practice that I (and many that I've talked to) am still surprised exists today. Growing up in a religious family, I can relate to the tug-of-war that faith, family, lifestyle, and human goodness and dignity can play in someone's life. Was really engrossed by the first episode and will continue to listen.

Brilliant!   (5/5)

I’m a therapist and I love this podcast. I’m so happy that the destruction of ex-gay “therapy” is being revealed. Thank you for sharing these stories. We need to help our clients love themselves for who they are, not try to “break them and then rebuild them” in another image.

A Podcast for a Better World   (5/5)

As the sister of a gay man who was sent to “conversion” therapy, there isn’t much out there to show / tell about the horrors that are present in these places. Stories like Gerrard’s will help shape a better world for the LGBTQ+ community and raise awareness for those not actively involved in it.

This story is important   (5/5)

Don’t listen to any posts about how they hate that the people from Radiolab are getting “political.” This is an important story that doesn’t get a lot of news/media attention. With that said, indifference and wanting to live in ignorance is a dangerous concept. The more podcasts that come out like this one, the better informed people will be.

Great content, quality podcasting!   (5/5)

So good, so far! Great content of a subject I know little about. I look forward to hearing a lot more! 5 star production for sure!

Great   (4/5)

Only a idiot would call this a liberal podcast