You’ve heard it before, and you’ll hear it again… if we are to bridge this wide gap between the Church and the LGBT community, then education is imperative. One misunderstanding that seems to be popular among heterosexual Christians is that they tend to mistake homosexuality with gender confusion. Now, before I get into this topic, let me say that I believe that there are people are born gay, and there are also people who feel they were born in the wrong body. (We mustn’t forget our trans friends!) The point I want to make here, is that many people believe these are one in the same.
I can tell you for a fact… I’m delighted that I’m not a male. I feel completely comfortable and confident as a woman. Am a attracted to the same sex? Absolutely. Do I wish I could change my gender in order to be with them? No way! It seems that many people, unfortunately, believe that if one is homosexual, they simply just “should have been born the other gender”. Not so, my friends! I know more than one set of opposite-gender siblings (some gay, and some straight) who take on characteristics of the contrasting gender. For example, the girl may be very athletic, aggressive, and competitive, while the boy may enjoy things “traditionally reserved for the female”, such as baking, sewing, etc. For the record, gender roles have always annoyed me. Why not be who you are, and do what you love? Yet, the religious right is continually attempting to resurrect their sexual identity ideology.
This is a conversation I had to have with my dad after coming out to him. For a brief time, he thought I wished I’d been born male. It’s not his fault that he grew up learning that homosexuality and gender confusion are the same thing. Most preachers and teachers don’t want to spend a substantial amount of time on the issue, so they just lump it together in the same category. But if they truly want to be an accepting people, as they claim, then they must first attempt to understand what homosexuality really is.
People like Dr. Joseph Nicolosi only perpetuate this sickening and ludicrous cycle. He is a member of the conservative religious right, and has written books such as “A Parent’s Guide to Preventing Homosexuality”. He makes some outrageous claims.
Here are just a few excerpts:
• “The major conflict at the root of lesbianism is the girl’s unconscious rejection of her feminine identity. Women who become lesbians have usually decided, on an unconscious level, that being female is either undesirable or unsafe.” (Chapter 7)
• “All too often, a bad marriage contributes to a son’s confusion. A boy’s concept of masculinity suffers when Mom conveys a negative perception of the male world. In families where there is a child with gender confusion, the mother may not have made it clear that she values masculinity–particularly, her husband’s masculinity. (Chapter 4)
• “Poor body image is very common among homosexuals.” (Chapter 6)
• “‘Why are gays drawn to Disney World each June?’ asks Focus on the Family’s Tom Hess. Anyone who doubts that gender conflict is at the root of homosexuality would likely lay that idea to rest after seeing Disney’s annual Gay Day celebration. As Hess observes, ‘Infatuation with Disney icons like Alice is one of the top draws for homosexuals who flock to Gay Day each year.'” (Chapter 5)
And… then, there’s my personal favorite…
• “I have also seen this same intense fascination with neutered or genderless cartoon characters. One father told me that his son, who is now involved in homosexuality and is refusing to consider change, had a boyhood obsession with Bozo the clown. At the time the parents thought it was cute, even if a little strange. But he held on to the obsession until the age of twelve. The truth is, these obsessive interests are boys’ attempts to lose themselves in a fantasy world where they can imagine themselves as something other than male and where the challenges of gender do not exist.” (Chapter 4)
I know I can speak for the women, and say that these suggestions and ideas are completely outlandish. Boys, I’d love to hear what you have to say. (That is, if you can pull yourself away from “The Little Mermaid” long enough to comment.)
The real truth of sexuality is that it’s never black or white. Sexuality is very fluid, with countless shades of gray. Be yourself! Don’t let the Church, or even the gay community, tell you what you should be. God made you. Be the best you possible!