Richard Isay, psychiatrist who fought gay "mental illness" label, dead at 77

Posted by Chris Geidner
June 30, 2012 2:25 AM |

The New York Times reports tonight that Richard Isay, 77, has died.

From the article:

Dr. Richard A. Isay, a psychiatrist, psychoanalyst and gay-rights advocate who did not admit to himself that he was gay until he was 40, married and a father, and who won a pitched battle to persuade his own profession to stop treating homosexuality as a disease, died on Thursday in Manhattan. He was 77.

Of his work, the article quotes Dr. Jack Drescher, a training and supervising analyst at the William Alanson White Institute in New York and the author of Psychoanalytic Therapy and the Gay Man:

He changed the way the psychoanalytic world viewed the subject of homosexuality. He was a pioneer, a very brave man. He was attacked by psychoanalysts. He took a lot of flak.

Isay -- who had been married to Jane Isay for many years -- met Gordon Harrell in 1979, moved in together in 1989 after his marriage to Jane Isay ended, and married Harrell in Manhattan this past year.

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