Again, young friends of mine, check with your parents first before reading this. 🙂
This post, in a way, is a follow up to yesterdays post and the backlash that I expect to see from it. You don’t need to read it, but it might give you more context for why I’m posting this now. I’ve actually been mulling over this topic for a while now.
See, here’s the thing. I’m not a rad trad super conservative Catholic. Anyone who knows me personally IRL or even through Facebook knows this. I’m not a Church Militant girl who posts links to lifesitenews about how terrible trans people are. I don’t think conversion therapy is a thing that is useful. So on an so forth.
I have several friends who identify on various levels of the nonbinary spectrum of gender presentation. Of course the majority of my friends are cis males/females who present in what society has traditionally held their genders to be. But I’ve got a fair bunch of friends who aren’t “traditional”. And frankly, I wouldn’t want them to change.
They have taught me so much about loving the unexpected. To question what it means to be a man or a woman. To examine what it means to be masculine or feminine. To be open to accepting everyone no matter how they present themselves. I’m always KIND to people, but in the past might not have been open to spending time listening to them just due to discomfort with the “strange”. But thanks to my friends, if I meet someone who isn’t traditionally masculine or feminine, I want to get to know them. I want to have a drink with them and listen to their stories and be their friend. I want them to know that even if we have philosophical or theological differences, that it doesn’t mean that I want them to change.
There’s often this idea that Catholics want everyone wearing modest clothing that is perfectly in line with gender norms and that we all must strictly show that we fit in the binary. I don’t think that’s true. I think God’s house is open to many many types of people. Our actions and choices are what get us in the door, but there is no dress code. Just as God created birds of many varieties and colors and shapes and sizes, so too did He create humans to present in a variety of ways. Our culture is changing from one that dresses in ways that fit a binary of styles, to one that is more fluid and melded and that people feel truly suits them (and obviously with my trans friends, this isn’t all about how they dress… I’m speaking more to the nonbinary side of things and just the initial look, not the deeper identity issues). There are people that say that if someone born a man dresses as a woman and believes she’s a woman will never enter the gates of Heaven. I disagree, respectfully. Jesus even refers to this sort of topic in Matthew 19. And I think He says a very important thing:
Whoever can accept this, ought to accept it.
And frankly, in action, that’s where I’m at. I accept Jesus’s teachings. And I live them in my life and I’m not going to bash them over anyone’s head. I might share them and tell others of them (or just have them out here on the internet for whoever to read) but I’m not forcing anyone to change. Because I can’t do that.
But if you can’t accept me, then you can go and leave me and not talk to me. I can accept that (although I’d be very very sad). Or we can continue to dine and converse and share our lives with each other. Wishing each other the best, living our lives, and enjoying the great beauty in the diversity of God’s creations.