Parents of 23-year-old Bryce Faulkner have gone public on Fox News to declare that Faulkner is doing “fine” and voluntarily submitting to “Christian counseling.” Fox News failed to obtain a statement directly from Faulkner and failed to disclose Faulkner’s location.

Travis Swanson, Bryce Faulkner and friends(Faulkner is pictured at top center with friend Travis Swanson, far left, and other friends.)

Debra Faulkner, of El Dorado, Ark., falsely characterizes Faulkner’s concerned friends as people who were “pulling him” toward homosexuality. “He just wants to take some time and figure out what he wants to do with his life.”

The parents claim that Faulkner has released the following statement from seclusion: “Every decision that I’ve made has been based solely upon my beliefs and I have not been manipulated or coerced by anyone to do anything.”

Bryce’s friend Travis Swanson, 24, disagrees. (See previous TWO story.) He said the pair had been pursuing a happy relationship, mostly via Skype with occasional personal visits, until Debra gained access to her son’s e-mail account and discovered Bryce’s secret.

According to Fox News:

The next time they spoke, Swanson said, Bryce was inconsolable.

“He was crying really, really bad, I mean, like uncontrollably crying,” he said. “He said [Bryce’s parents] made him read quotes aloud from the Bible and said that he’s going to hell.”

The following day, Swanson said he received a text from Faulkner indicating that his parents wanted to take him to a “place in Pensacola” to address his sexuality. Swanson would later call the Union County Sheriff’s Department to say that Faulkner was being taken against his will by his “fundamental Baptist” parents.

The Fox News story greatly exaggerates the number of ex-gay affiliates of Exodus International to “roughly 250 local ministries.” Fox also misleadingly tells readers that president Alan Chambers has two children — concealing their adoption. Exodus International refuses to issue an official policy opposing coerced or involuntary participation in its programs; Fox News did not inquire about this.

Hat tip: XGW