“I’m a Straight Christian Woman Raised a Fundamentalist — And I’m In Love With a Woman!”

 

So here’s a letter I got in last week:

I have a question, John. I am an avid reader of your blog. I am not sure if I’ve ever commented before, though. I am just loving your posts on being gay and being a follower of Christ. I love Jesus. I always have, ever since I have known of Him. My first remembered introduction to God was around age two, and it’s been true love ever since. In fact, I even pursued higher education in Divinity because of that love.

I have always thought of myself as a heterosexual woman. That was easy to think, because I like men, and am very attracted to some men. Always have been. Still am. And yet I am in the strange position of having my sexual orientation undergo a big change (or, perhaps, a new discovery; I’m honestly not sure which).

But this is really really really a pain for me, when I deal with my Christian family and community. Which I don’t, because at this point I am not ready for the emotional trauma of having to deal with the flipping out that will occur if I share with them the new me. They, of course, are convinced that homosexuality is a choice (always, even for those who feel like they were born with a same-sex orientation) — and then I discover that I am not a fixed heterosexual, like I always thought I was, but bisexual (?!); now, in my late thirties, I find myself deeply deeply in love with a woman.

So, for me, it is a choice … in the sense that I could be happy, sexually, with a man. Only the person I fell in love with is a woman. And I never knew that I even could fall in love with a woman!!! I didn’t know that these feelings could happen with the same gender. I mean, I am someone who has grown up in Christian fundamentalism, so homosexuals were evil sinners. That’s what I heard straight from the pulpit, in my Sunday school classes and all of that kind of thing. No one in their right mind would have come out of the closet in my super conservative community when I was growing up! So I never knew an openly gay person; therefore there never was anything to challenge the things I heard from church. I never even considered that my camp might be wrong about that, until I was eighteen, and met my first openly gay person (who was not a monster, like I thought gay people must be, but was actually a very nice person — and that really rocked my little world!). But even then, I still thought homosexuality was a sin, a choice, or something that was broken about a person — like, maybe they were abused as a child, and so they were broken and therefore homosexually oriented.

It was only when I hit my thirties that I began questioning what my camp said about gay people. Though I never ever thought I would ever be one of “those gay people.” Having this happen to me this past year has been mind-blowing. I fell in love with an amazing person. And suddenly … I am getting it. I am really starting to get it. I have suddenly been kicked out of the world of accepted sexuality, and dumped into the world where I am not allowed to be in love — where I am the monster my old pastor preached about! But it’s still me. I’m me, just the same as I always was. ME. Only, if my family knew, oh my word, they would flip out. They would not be able to see me as me. I would become one of “them.” Because homosexuals are not considered normal people. They are “The Others,” these people who are not really full human beings like us.

Yet experiencing this deep and delightful love for my wonderful beautiful partner? It is no different than falling in love with a man. It is wonderful, exciting, delightful! She is such an incredible person, such a perfect life-fit. If she was a male, my family would be so excited for me!!! But she’s not. And, to them, it’s not possible that I could be feeling and experiencing this love that I am. Here I always looked at the “homosexual” as if they were just all about lust. You know, it’s all about sex, right? At least, that’s what I thought. Just sexual lusts. I never knew that a homosexual person was just like a heterosexual person, in that they fall in love; they feel; they care; they have all the same exact feelings a heterosexual has — and, like with a heterosexual relationship, sexual attraction is a part of it, of course, but it’s just a part of the whole package. (It’s funny, really. No one would ever tell a happy heterosexual couple that they have a problem because they were well matched with their personalities and had sexual feelings for each other. No, that sexual attraction would be assumed, and celebrated as a good thing for them.)

So, here I am, not where I ever thought or imagined I would be, in love with a wonderful woman who makes my eyes sparkle and brings out the best in me. She is a Christian as well, raised in fundamentalism just like me, shocked and amazed at what has happened, just like me, and very much in love, just like me (and, haha, reads your blog, just like me). She is the life partner I always dreamed of.

And so, all that to say that it’s not as easy as “just” telling my parents that I am gay. Because I’m not gay. I am just me. My sexuality does not fit neatly into a box. (I wonder if anyone’s really does?) I am me, a person. And I am in love with another person — who happens to be a woman. And we are happy together. Wonderfully happy! The only part about this that is deeply unhappy is the part where we know that if our community, our families, and most of our friends knew of our love they’d be horrified, and would view us as fallen, broken, deceived, and headed straight for hell. The part where you know that if they knew, they would probably wish you had died in a tragic accident, rather than say you are in love and pursuing a relationship with a person of the same sex. The part where you know they will mourn because, to them, it will mean they have lost you, totally lost you forever.

It is so strange, when you want to just do cartwheels and celebrate finding such a beautiful love — you want to grab all your other loved ones and tell them the exciting news — and, well, you just can’t. Sometimes I feel so happy that I find myself smiling, and my first instinct is to share that happiness. And then I remember, “Oh. I can’t tell anyone.” It’s a heavy feeling, in the middle of something so precious and happy.

There is so much more I could say. But this is good for now. Would love to hear your thoughts. Because, in my case, my orientation is flexible, which means it is sort of a choice. But who I fell in love with? There was no choice there. None at all.

My thoughts? My thoughts are that this letter renders any addition to it superfluous. It’s fantastic that you’ve found this new love; it’s actually a bit physically nauseating that for that love you would be reviled by people who already love you, and whose entire faith system is supposed to be rooted in the unconditional love of God.

It feels like you’re from the future. It feels like all of us who understand that you really can stop at the idea that God is love are from the future, and that all these crazy-ass “Christians” who want to pile onto that love rules and restrictions and judgments and condemnations are from a past that, frankly, can’t actually become the past any too soon for me.

You found love. I suppose that in the end all I can do is be grateful that, for the life of me, I can’t understand how anyone could find that anything less than wonderful.

In a nutshell, my thoughts on your letter are this: It’s sad to say, but fuck ‘em. It’s your life. It’s your love. If others have so little love in their lives that ultimately they want you to have less love in your life, then forget them. And may God help them.

 

(By way of encouragement, maybe: I Came Out to My Evangelical Family. And Guess What?)

About John Shore

John Shore (who, fwiw, is straight) is the author of UNFAIR: Christians and the LGBT Question, and three other great books. He is founder of Unfundamentalist Christians (on Facebook here), and executive editor of the Unfundamentalist Christians group blog.  (In total John's two blogs receive some 250,000 views per month.) John is also co-founder of The NALT Christians Project, which was written about by TIME,  The Washington Post, and others. His website is JohnShore.com. You're invited to like John's Facebook page. Don't forget to sign up for his mucho-awesome newsletter.

  • Barb

    Thank you. I will be printing several copies of this column to pass around when I get up the courage to “come out” to my family…

  • http://pathux.wordpress.com/ Pat

    Grab for the brass ring! There are many who will support you who are straight. Celebrate your love!

  • http://www.barnmaven.com Mary @Barnmaven.com

    I believe sexuality for many people is far more fluid than folks think. I look forward to the day when we don’t have to self-identify our orientation — we just love who we love and no one gives two shits about whether its a man or a woman. This is a beautiful letter, and your description of what constitutes “being in love” is perfect. Of course there is a sexual attraction to the person you’re in love with, but you’d better really like them too, or there’s not much else to talk about the other 22 hours of the day.

    • http://leap-of-fate.com Christy

      Love this. I agree about the fluidity. What clicked for me was understanding what the writer so beautifully explains: love chooses us.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=682069687 Dominique

    This bit made me wanna cry, because I know so many people who would react in this way”…

    “The only part about this that is deeply unhappy is the part where we know that if our community, our families, and most of our friends knew of our love they’d be horrified, and would view us as fallen, broken, deceived, and headed straight for hell. The part where you know that if they knew, they would probably wish you had died in a tragic accident, rather than say you are in love and pursuing a relationship with a person of the same sex.”

    They worship a God of love… but they’d rather you’d died in a tragic accident… This is just so wrong. We are supposed to love – not judge.

    Barb, it’s your life, your body, your faith and your sexuality. It is nothing to do with anyone else. I wish you all the happiness in the world!!!

  • DMK

    Maybe in this realm we are fixed male and female. It seems that way because male and female energy are definitely different, having their own feel. But I don’t believe that our souls are male and female. I kinda seem them as the same, one. Does that sound crazy?

    I agree with what you say, “Because I’m not gay. I am just me. My sexuality does not fit neatly into a box.” I don’t think ANYone’s sexuality can be neatly fit into a box. There are so many out-of-the-norm aspects of sexuality that, btw, seems to make everyone uncomfortable to talk about. There are people who take it to the extreme and are labeled “weird”, “sick”… whatever; but there ARE people out there whose sexuality happens to be influenced, fueled by out of the “norm” stuff and, yet, not take it to the extreme… they are also afraid to talk about that.

    I don’t know why I bring that up, but it was something that I thought about when I read this post. I guess it reinforces the notion that nobody should judge another individual. Half the time those judging have “weirdness” in their own closets and they persecute someone else because they feel guilty, themselves.

    • Diana A.

      Yup.

  • Dirk

    There is absolutely no evidence that all people are born heterosexual.

    In all high-order mammals, about 10% are born gay.

    A preponderance of scientific evidence confirms this for humans, too.

    If you are in love, get married and be happy. If the hateful, nasty, spiteful monsters in your current church get upset, find a Christian church which accepts that God doesn’t build junk.

    Don’t waste another second, however, on what the haters think.

    • Liadan

      Actually, there *isn’t* valid scientific evidence that people are ‘born’ their sexuality, gender maybe, but not sexuality. There’s almost no studies into lesbian sexuality at all. If all sexuality were genetic, then people with fetishes, or pedophilia would have legitimate claims to their sexuality and inability to control their behaviour.

      Anti-gays want to believe sexuality is a choice, so the gays can choose to go back to their ‘natural’ state.

      Pro-gays want to believe sexuality is fixed at birth, so ‘get off my back, I can’t help it!”

      I think both those positions are wrong.

      I think sexuality has many and varied ’causes.’ Some may be born gay, (1% and mostly homosexual) some may choose to be gay (a conscious choice), and then, I think, the vast majority may come to be gay through various reasons. some have had traumatic experiences with the opposite sex, some have had early pleasurable with the same sex. These people are gay by choice, but subconsciously. A very few can be ‘cured’ with motivation and therapy, (a very very few.)

      But just because someone became gay by nurture instead of nature, doesn’t mean they can be changed. Changing someone’s sexual predilictions is nearly impossible. Again, if it could be changed, we could cure fetishes or pedophilia or sexual sadism. So far, we can’t.

      What does all this mean? We really don’t know anything at all about the acquiring of sexuality. It most likely has multiple causes. We can’t change someone’s sexuality with any degree of success. And what does it matter? Anti-homosexuality is usually driven by fear and religion, neither of which should have any bearing on civil rights and Constitutional freedoms. As long as the two (or more) parties are adults and consenting, its no one’s business what they do.

      • Dirk

        OK, that was total and profound ignorance of the work of virtually the entire (non-conservative Christian) medical, natural science and (for what their opinion is worth, psychological) communities.

        Would you like me to post links? How about you defend your absurd contentions with evidence.

      • DR

        How about you provide some Citations for the statistics you’ve presented?

        • Don Rappe

          I’m not sure what statistics were above. I am willing to share what little I know about the impact of nature and nurture in sexual preferences. If you take a puppy from its mother too early, before 6 to 8 weeks, it will quite likely try to hump your leg when it matures. It needs this time to be “imprinted” with its dogginess. The puppy was not born with leg humping genes, it just was not properly imprinted. The results of imprinting are completely permanent. You might train out the puppies behavior, but, not his desires. My point in this is that there is indeed a great deal that is unknown about the source or causes of our sexual preferences. But whether by nature or by nurture, they are usually pretty permanent. And that they are somewhat fluid.

        • Dirk

          Good idea.

          I don’t know whether links work on this blog, so this may or may not go through. If not, I’ll try asking John directly.

          http://www.soulforce.org/article/644

          This is a very undemanding website, it makes no assumptions regarding the reader’s knowledge of the natural sciences. Probably a good thing, given the ignorance so many conservative Christians show towards even the most established theories. The article linked to is older, current studies are pushing closer to the 10% again. Still, a good beginning.

          DR, how far into the natural sciences, that is, how far into reality do you want me to go here? Aside from our business, I teach a few graduate seminars in a related field, I can go as deep or as shallow as you like.

          The biggest lie conservative Christians tell, is, of course, that homosexuality is not genetic, thus chosen and not immutable. This facile lie is based both on a false comprehension of 19th century genetics as well as poor research done by hateful conservative Christians such as Cameron. To debunk that lie requires one to actually read and think. Happy to tackle it, though. For a beginning, the link should help.

          • DR

            Dirk and Don I was actually asking Liadan for the citations behind his stats but I’m glad you thought I was asking you because that linked information is incredible!

          • Dirk

            Oh, sorry, DR.

            It’s not always all about me, I do keep telling myself that…then answering myself ‘oh, of course, you would say that.

          • DR

            I call it “President of the I-I-Me club!” (of which I am CEO)

          • cat rennolds

            Dirk, I’m not claiming to have an ounce of your obviously in-depth knowledge of the science behind this, but what I do have is personal experience I wanted to share.

            I’m bisexual, deeply and permanently so, not just bi-curious, and I have known far too many self-identified gays AND self-identified straights who, well, aren’t. They’re bisexual to one degree or another, and they ARE making a choice at some level to identify the way they do. Granted there are far more “straight” people who fit this description, because it’s culturally imprinted and supported, but I’ve known several bisexuals who identify as gay because they’re monogamous with a gay partner. Or because they’re phobic of the opposite sex for various reasons. This does not make it an invalid preference! Physically and genetically they may be attracted to the opposite sex as well as their own, but psychology is equally important.

            I also know gays who are totally, completely gay. Total lack of interest in the opposite sex, can’t even fake it. Not averse, not phobic, just no attraction. Ditto heterosexuals, some who’ve even TRIED same-sex sex out of curiosity and went, well, that was boring, where’s the remote?

            The difference is that because it’s so much more difficult and painful to identify as gay in our culture, a far, far larger percentage of gays are actually gay than straights are actually straight.

            A UU minister once was preaching on how gay marriage doesn’t threaten the institution of heterosexual marriage. I explained to him that, yes, it does. It doesn’t threaten HIS marriage because he’s straight and committed, and so is his wife. But if gay marriage had been culturally supported when I was young, just taken for granted the way straight marriage is, it’s entirely likely that I’d now be married to a woman and not a man. Gay love and relationship was so culturally prevalent in ancient Greece, for example, that they neglected their wives at the expense of their population numbers!

            I don’t usually bring this up, for the same reason from two perspectives. I don’t want to give the repressive right any more ammunition to use against the gay community. They have too much already. And, I don’t want the gay community jumping down my throat to protect a right I fully support, because they hear “some gays do have a choice” and assume I’m ignorant and bigoted.

            Being bisexual is hard. I get all the pain and grief from the straight fundies that the gays do, and then I get it AGAIN from gays for “passing.”

            Eventually the ideal would be that DIVERSITY be the standard, so that NOBODY fgot socially pressured or culturally imprinted to express a given preference, gay OR straight OR bi. And nobody got to force anybody into wedlock because there was a baby involved, or really for any reason at all. And nobody CARED who married who or how many or why as long as all the kids were healthy and taken care of.

            But that’s a loooooong way off.

          • Dirk

            I understand where you are coming from, but for real gays and real heterosexuals, there is just no choice. We are born this way.

            The Kinsey scale is useless, I sometimes think it does more harm than good.

          • cat rennolds

            The fact that you don’t have a choice is exactly why I don’t go around hollering about this. It’s not going to help ME, and you guys don’t need any more grief. The kind of people who are attacking you only seem to be able to make fine distinctions in their own favor.

            I don’t know what makes the difference between me and people who can ignore one preference and identify with the other, but I don’t have a choice about being bisexual, either. I have never been able to pretend to myself one way or the other. And I tried.

            But even if we had a choice…..no one else has a right to judge it, or make it for us.

            You only think the Kinsey scale is useless because you’re completely at one end of it. It’s highly useful when you’re in the middle:)

          • Dirk

            Actually, no, I don’t think it is useless because I am a real gay.

            I think it is useless because it is based on poor research.

            There is also the non-trivial matter that is is seldom properly applied. The implication of using a linear scale is that those in the 3,4 range are the vast majority and those of us at the polar opposites are the minority.

            Which is, of course, nonsense.

            Nearly all the human race is heterosexual. There is no cure and we must accept them with all their charming little ways.

            Roughly 10% of the human population is not heterosexual.

            Of that 10%, an unknown but small number of women are bisexual. The argument is made, though unsupported, that a number of men are also bisexual.

            Regardless of the percent of the population we represent, each of us is loved of God (though not by the conservative Christians).

            There is no need for a scale. If you are heterosexual or homosexual, you can not change your orientation and accommodate to a sexual relationship with the wrong sex. If you are bisexual, you can’t stop being able to respond to both sexes. What you do about it is just as much your choice as that of heterosexuals and homosexuals.

            Some bisexuals chose to live monogamously. Some don’t.

            No gay, however, changes their orientation. It, like that of the heterosexuals and bisexuals, is immutable.

          • cat rennolds

            the line about the Kinsey scale was a joke. sorry. implying that I need the scale to tell if someone is a potential mate or not.

            what’s your supporting data for the “nearly all the human race is heterosexual?” I am headed to the site, but I’m curious if you can quote it off the top of your head.

  • Mary Rothgeb

    For a woman to find her sexual identity is more fluid than she thought at about this point in life is more common than folks might think. It happened to me about 40, and I felt very alone until I started educating myself and reaching out to the LGBT community. I can recommend “Lesbian Epiphanies: women coming out in later life”, by Karol Jensen. I needed an explanation, and it helped a lot.

    I can’t share what it’s like to experience this with your upbringing, but I can relate to the miracle of falling in love and reveling in how right it feels! I’m so happy for you! Part of my coming out process was finding a UCC church that was open and affirming – my first church home. I had the interesting experience of having relatively few people hassle me about coming out as a lesbian, but quite a few wrinkling their brow at the news that I was exploring Christianity. The polar opposite of your experience I know. I offer it just to let you know that it’s possible to look at yourself in the mirror and finally recognize yourself, and still wonder what the heck is going on!

    Blessings and very best wishes…

  • Tink

    This describes me to a T. Late 30′s and now I find myself head over heels in love with a woman.

    I want so bad to tell the world, but dealing with all the stress is not something either of us are capable of handling right now.

  • sprocket

    This website is more like liberalism dressed up in religious clothing. Nothing that adhears to what you find in the BIble, just liberalism (politics) with a Biblical patina.

    • Don Rappe

      Here’s a little patina for you, although I don’t think it’s particularly liberal. “Whoever offends one of these little ones that believe in me, It would be better for him in the day of judgment if he had a millstone fastened to his neck and be hurled into the depths of the sea”. (Quote may not be exact.)

    • DR

      This is the kind of thing that passive-aggressives say out of their own neurotic pathology that the world you used to be able to control through our beautiful church is changing, you’re losing power, and it’s terrifying. Everyone will be fine just like the last time we faced change on this level, when those of you with similar “This is what the Bible says!” were insistent on keeping Blacks and Whites from worshipping together because of what “the Bible says”. You called it “Liberalism” back then too.

      The good news is that no one cares about this kind of remark too much anymore. And in five years when gay marriage is legal in each state and your life is exactly as it is today, you’ll be the one saying “God loves the gays just as much and of course he wants them to have their legal and civil rights”. This isn’t liberalism, dear, this is simply history repeating itself as a result of education and God allowing us through His Mercy and Grace to see more of Himself.

      • http://leap-of-fate.com Christy

        Yes! This! What DR said.

        • Dirk

          Pretty much sums it up.

          Just add a heavy dose of hatred and there you have it – instant conservative Christianity.

          I do wonder, sometimes, who they will hate next. Now that blacks, Jews and women are more or less off the table and we gays are fighting back, who is next? There will be someone, there always is.

          • http://www.BrianWendt.com Brian W

            Hay Dirk, a little Christophobic there? Conservative Christians don’t hate anyone, except of course satan and his demons.

          • Dirk

            Hey Brian,

            No, no problem with Christ.

            Major problem with conservative Christians who beat us up, rape us, torture us and murder us.

            You do know the difference, right?

          • cat rennolds

            You don’t have to hate to fail to love. Whoever is not for us is against us.

          • Mindy

            THAT is what Brian doesn’t understand. Thank you, Cat. Perfect.

    • http://leap-of-fate.com Christy

      Dear Sprocket, I used to be conservative. About as conservative as you can get. It was through wrestling with tough questions through an ongoing conversation with God and myself and scripture that I came to have a different perspective. Writer Anne Lamott says, “Sometimes heaven is just a new pair of glasses.” By eating a lot of humble pie I discovered a heavy layer of self-righteousness and certainty had fogged up my glasses. God cleaned them off and helped me see compassion.

      Many of us are not trying at all to pound the square peg of faith into the round hole of liberalism or vice versa. In fact, it is God that led us to see that we aren’t to use hammers at all.

      Blessings on your journey, my friend.

      • Lili

        Christy, I love your response to Sprocket. Having read earlier posts form you, there is much in your life experience that I have not shared, but I have shared what you posted here – that I started out holding many of the same bigoted, misdirected beliefs that so many on this blog rail against, not because I was evil or cruel but because that is what I was conditioned to believe. My own journey to a different set of conclusions was a stumbling one, and had several “in between” phases where I tried to honor both my original upbringing as well as what my heart and intellect were leading me to, That is why I react here from time to time to posts that not only take exception to conservative / fundamentalist / close-minded beliefs and the damage they have caused people in the LGBT community, but do it in a way that is (IMO) retaliatory and just as disrespectful and insulting as the writers accuse the “other side” of being.

        My own journey to a different way of thinking and behaving began when some very smart people challenged me, but did so in a way that was respectful and left room for me to change without having to feel like an idiot or worse. I still seek out people that will challenge me, It helps me sharpen my own thinking process and re-evaluate my own behaviors – that’s why this os one of the blogs I especially like to check in on very frequently . But, if those folks had approached me with some of the bitter and diesrespectful rhetoric I sometimes see here , I would have been very turned off and unable to receive what they were saying. Which means I would probably still be on the side of the fence that most posters here rail against, rather than trying to be part of the solution (or at least I pray I am).

        • DR

          LilI’m glad you’re here and I’m also glad you were honest about your journey. I do believe that at different points in said journey we need gentleness at times to really her what someone is saying. I used to be that way too and there are some instances where that is the right approach.

          I guess I’d also challenge this a little but in a general way (not you personally). If we are truly pursuing Christ, being open to being influenced by those He puts in our path – aren’t we putting some limitations on who we will really listen to or not by writing someone off as “disrespectful”? They may, in fact, disrespect us. They may be furious with us because of what our stated, personal beliefs have done to them. Is it reasonable for us to expect they sould be kind to us, or we will choose to write them off as being disrespectfulL and just not change? Change is a choice. Sometimes I have experienced Christians as a group of people who don’t handle others being angry with us and saying so. And I wonder why that is and if it is ultimately, a sign of some unhealth within us.

    • kimberly

      come here often?

    • cat rennolds

      Have you READ the Bible? Because if so, I don’t think you understood it.

  • http://htbarbarianjewel.blogspot.com/ sunflower

    Hi there. Your story is so similar to mine – i met Jesus when i was 2 and have loved Him all my life (52 yrs) since then. My church upbringing was similar to yours. There is a wonderful website called http://www.freedom2(b).com in Australia that is specifically for charasmatic and pentecostal GLBTQ people – it unpacks the 7 scriptures used to condemn homosexuals and in a nutshell, when we go back to the original heb and gk..every single example of supposed homosexuality in the bible is in fact referring to: rape, promiscuity, temple prostitutes, gang rape etc. The finishing touch for me was that Jesus never mentioned it so it can’t have been very important. Like you, i find myself attracted to men at times, but more deeply to women. However, i also don’t like labels and i think sexuality is quite fluid really and the important thing is love, respect, honour, etc. For me whether or not it is a man or woman really comes into the equation – having said that I have been celebate for 7 years now as i wait for the one who is perfect for me to come into my life. Any friends or church who give you the left foot of fellowship based on your sexual identity don’t actually really love you. God does. My friend who has also loved Jesus all her life, was born a boy and had a complete gender reassignment done years ago. Still, some churches condemn her (and kick her out) when they find out… and your church, your fam and friends may or may not react that way, but even if they do, you will find way more happiness being the authentic self whom God created than pretending in order to shield others from who you really are…that can only ever result in you losing out. I have copped alot of flack over the years in churches, and lost friends when they found out but it certainly didn’t ruin my life…i am really really happy and my relationship with Jesus is indescribably intimate and wonderful :-) The church changes it views on what is right and wrong quite regularly..ie: women must wear hats to show submission to men, people should be quiet and respectful in church, women shouldn’t teach men, and how about slaves…the church was fine with that! The word “homosexual” was the translators effort to translate the Gk word arsenakoitis from their own perspective – we still do not have a def. translation for it but it def. isn’t homosexuality. When Paul wrote that, there was no concept of homosexuality within the cultures. So…peace to you. I have no doubt that your relationship with God will confirm to you that nothing can separate you from His love and that there is no condemnation from Him. Real, true wonderful love doesn’t come along all that often :-) Warm regards, Sunflower

  • http://www.poesies.com Gina Cirelli

    Very well said, John. I was thinking the same things as I read through.

    There are plenty of loving, respectful people out there just waiting to get to know what a wonderful person this LW is, and be all excited and happy right along with her. With friends like hers, who needs enemies?

  • http://livingtension.blogspot.com/ Tyler

    Hey John,

    I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog and I’m thankful for the discussions you have started. They are so needed! I’m trying to create another space for respectful discussion here:

    http://livingtension.blogspot.com/

    I’m thankful for your heart and compassion for others.

  • kimberly

    the beautiful, unique and wonderful you that God created is perfectly fine. if your family and others choose to argue with God, let them take it up with God. :-)

  • Lili

    Dear Letter Writer, I just wanted to reply to say that your story makes me feel both envious and sad. Envious that you are in that wonderful, exciting stage of new love and discovery. Sad that it has to be marred by so much emotional angst and pain. Many others here have expressed it better than I will, but I just want to encourage you to not let those with prejudiced or misguided beliefs to ruin this for you. “Drink deeply” of the wisdom and support that has been shared here for your benefit, and I wish you tremendous joy and satisfaction with your newly found love.

    • Lili

      John, I don’t know if this is OK to post on your blog, so please forgive me if I’m overstepping, but I wanted to share the name of a book that I have found to be very helpful for Christians who are starting to question their assumptions aobut LGBT issues as they relate to Christianity. I am not as articulate as you and some of the other folks who post here, so I often find that while I know what I think, it is hard for me to find the right words to explain it well. Like much of your own writing, this book has has helped me find the right words to concisely present what I have concluded for others to hopefully consider as well. It is “Love is an Orientation: Elevating the Conversation with the Gay Community” by Andrew Marin. Again, just my own opinion, but this as well as John’s blog and some others I read have been good resources to help me be a better advocate.

  • The Letter Writer

    I feel very glad that I sent this letter to John, and I also feel very thankful for the many thoughtful and encouraging responses.

    • Erin D.

      What an amazing letter. Love, love, LOVE and don’t ever feel guilty for it and don’t ever let anyone else make you feel bad for it! This is a love-starved world and God created the world FOR love; it’s only PEOPLE who make love sound dirty and shameful and sinful. Only someone far away from God would ever try to drive a wedge between two people who feel love.

    • http://sacredbe.blogspot.com/ rain

      dear letter writer, i have read this letter of yours over and over. it’s helped me to put myself in your shoes and be more tender to others in my life. i’m so sorry for your pain and the hardship that follows your love, but i hope that it offers just a little solace for you to know that your words are helping others understand and empathize and maybe even say “me too!” a little.

      so much love.

      • The Letter Writer

        Thank you so much. To all of you.

    • xflowahsx

      Thank you so much for sending it. :) It has helped me greatly.

  • Linda B

    Dear Christian Woman,

    First I don’t think we get a choice in who we fall in love with. I have fallen in love with a wonderfull woman who is kind, hosest and compasionate, and I only found out I was gay about three months ago. Unfortunatly she does not share my feelings so we will be friends. ( Now I understand how the guys I used to date felt when I told them I wanted to be just friends. Hurts a bit.) I haven’t come out to my family yet and don’t know how to tell them any way. Just remember that your orentation is not the sum total of who you are. I hope your lady returns your love and you have a wonderful life together. Cheers to you both. :-)

  • TellingTheTruth

    women falling in love with another woman is very common these days.

  • TheAbsoluteTruth

    i am a straight man that just had to make a comment here. with much more Gay Women out there today, meeting a good straight woman for many of us men will be very difficult since there are many of us men that don’t have a love life right now. i noticed myself that women have been very nasty to me when i will try to start a conversation with the one that i am very much attracted too. and since i am a straight man, i would love very much to meet a good woman to share my life with which i am sure many of the other straight men will agree with me too. it is very sad that many women now prefer to be with another woman rather than looking for good men like us that know very well how to treat a woman good and with respect.

    • Allie

      Hon, an estimated 10% of people are gay. The other 90% are various shades of not gay. They aren’t all suddenly going to turn gay just because it’s become more socially acceptable. Can’t you see your way through to picking from the vast, overwhelming majority of women who are interested in the opposite sex and allowing the ones interested in the same sex to go on about their business?

      If women are being “very nasty” to you, then you need to ask yourself why. Are you presenting yourself in an inappropriate manner, at inappropriate times and places? Are you extremely physically unappealing? Whatever the issue is, work on that, rather than worrying about all the lesbians who won’t date you.

      • TheAbsoluteTruth

        Well it is the Truth when i will approach a woman that i am very much attracted too, will Curse at me. I had really thought that my Approach went very well since i introduced myself to her which she just walked away and was Very Nasty to me. And i know other men that this has happened too, and it really makes me wonder that she must had been Very Badly Abused by the men that she was with at one time. And that very much would explain it since many women do get Mistreated by men today, and that makes it much more difficult for us Straight men that are really looking for a Good woman to settle down with. I am a good looking man that keeps very much in good shape, and i would had never ever thought that i was going to have a Real Problem meeting a good woman today at all. I can’t really Blame myself at all since i didn’t do anything Wrong, and i am just hoping to find Love again. I know that if a woman were to approach me, i certainly wouldn’t Curse at her at all since many of them nowadays do really Curse at us. I never realized that there were so many women that really hate us men that bad, and there are many of us that are Really Good and know how to treat women Very Well.

        • xflowahsx

          In all honesty I get annoyed when men approach me simply because I know they are approaching me as a sexual/romantic interest and I am simply not interested. I’m not nasty, but I dont act interested either and all of a sudden I am “rude”.

          Well, when I am nice men take it as interest, so that doesnt work either.

  • Cassandra Saint-Cyr

    This is so accurate. Because I myself got out of an engagement with a male so I could be happy with a female. I was born a Christian and always heard “homosexuality” is a sin you will be condemned, recently my Dad found out I am lacking to a girl. And told me to put a end to it because he never raised me be in a gay marriage, my older sister as well found out and wants to kill the girl I love. I have been told that I have two months to put a end to it or else I will be kicked out you might ask ok, Cassy you can move in with the girl. But that’s not the case cause I’m in cali and she’s in Oklahoma finishing her last year of college. What I’m trying to say is I grew up hearing God is love, yet when someone hears “I’m gay” we are automatically condemned to go to hell. And it hurts me so much that I might not ever be able to show off the girl I love to my parents or bring her home because of her gender. I’m not asking for approval or my family to love her I’m asking just for simple words like, “you like a girl, and she makes you happy? That’s okay” please I need to get so many things off my chest if you could please comment or reach out to me through my email

    • Matt

      Cassy (is it okay if I call you that?), you are definitely not alone. You’ve been heard. My family has rejected my relationship as well, and I too was kicked out of my house. If your family has given you a time limit (mine did as well), use this time to make arrangements. You do not need to tell them where you are going; it is completely okay to be circumspect and even lie to protect yourself, since it sounds as though violent threats have been made.

      I know how much it hurts to be rejected by a family you are obviously devoted to. But right now, you can’t dwell on the hurt. Your physical safety and that of your partner matters most. File it away to be mourned when you are safe. Are there friends you can reach out to? Other family who will take you in? If you don’t make enough for rent, you can pay them back in other ways; you can help with groceries, household chores, look after the house, pets, or children. There are shelters. You have options. You do not need to stay somewhere that you are not safe. You are not being turned out because you love this girl. You are being turned out because of you family’s beliefs and actions. You are not at fault.

      God is love, God loves you. If you love this girl, and she makes you happy, then that is what matters. Find somewhere safe where that love can comfort you all of your days. If you need to get more off of your chest, go ahead. I can imagine how alone you may be feeing right now.

      • Cassandra saint-cyr

        Matt, you don’t know how much your words helped me, I’ve been such a emotions wreck from all this, and yes my family isn’t caring about my feeling there just caring about their pride the “what are people going to say, what is society going to say” and honestly I don’t care what anyone says I’m developing a love for this girl that I’ve never felt and its the greatest feeling apart from what my parents or sisters say. And I will be looking into going somewhere because I can’t stop talkin to her. Thank you so much for these words you don’t know how much I appreciate it because I haven’t heard God loves you know matter who you choose to love.

        • Matt

          You are so welcome, and I’m so glad I could be of help. Keep holding onto that conviction, that feeling of love. Only you and God know what’s in your heart, and what is best for you. Your family has made an enormous mistake by letting you go, and maybe they’ll realize that one day, maybe they won’t. But in the meantime, you’ll be on your way to a life that makes you happy.

          I’m not really big on quoting the Bible, but this one might speak to you as it did to me: “Romans 8:38-39–For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God.”

          So much good luck to you.

  • Seriously Speaking

    Very Obvious, why many of us Straight Guys do have trouble meeting a good woman these days.

    • Cassandra saint-cyr

      There’s plenty girls out their for you to say that

      • Seriously Speaking

        Well if only i can stop meeting the Very Nasty Ones Instead, then i would certainly have a much better chance myself since much more women today are Not nice at all. I know other men by the way that have the same problem, so i am certainly not alone. And it is very sad to say that there are much more Gay And Bi Women today that are adding to the problem since many of us men will not Blame ourselves when there are so many women that do hate us men today.

        • https://elizabeth-fullerton.squarespace.com/resume Elizabeth

          Hi SS and CS-C. I’m literally typing this surreptitiously in church. That’s how important I think it is. So quickly: the pressure on women to be nice is HUGE. Jesus trashes a temple, no problem. Mary of Magdala has money and an education, she’s a slut. It gets old real fast. I’ve heard a ton of LBT say that they went lesbian or bi because of the dearth of nice men. Naturally, that’s BS too, since gay isn’t a choice. It’s a spectrum for people who already lean that way.

  • xflowahsx

    I’m a Christian and I’ve discovered this very same thing. I am falling inn love with a woman and its the best thing that has ever happened to me. I feel like she totally understands me. I dont feel a shred of insecurity around her and I just… love her. Shes amazing.

    I don’t love God any less. Jesus is my savior and my hearts desire is to live for Him and serve Him. I know there are many other women out there like me. I feel like a flower blooming, and I feel at peace. Thank you SO MUCH for this wonderful article!


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