I sadly see others judging parents, especially Christian/Catholic parents, for accepting their LGBTQIA+ kids. I was once very conservative about this issue myself until I learned of the reality, that kids were and are dying due to rejection and political persecution, many of who are also part of the Autism community. As many of you know, I left the toxicity of trad environments to urban Catholicism because ministers were endangering peoples lives by telling them that it was a grave mortal sin to get the COVID vaccine.
Due to many years of coercion, abuse, and endangerment in trad environments, I am now a progressive Catholic. I am also an Academic Language Therapist who has written over 70 articles about the intersectionality between neurodiversity, the LGBTQIA+ spectrum, Catholic Social Teaching, the Family, Culture, and Politics. I may write a book from the viewpoint of a practitioner. As I have stated before, I hold specialized credentialing in LGBTQIA+ Inclusion in Healthcare now along with three disability specialties in Autism Spectrum Disorders, Cognitive Disabilities, and Dyslexia.
Family acceptance is not a matter of choice. It’s a matter of life and death. Over the last 3-5 years, the medical community and the military came to a fully-accepting status of LGBTQIA+ people and have concurred, that gender and sexuality are intrinsic parts of the human identity and cannot be altered or changed. For a certain percentage of the population, there are variances in gender and sexuality just as there are variances in neurology and psychology for other populations. I also hear, “What if the person wants to change or wants to be celibate?” Most people who attempt celibacy or “gay conversion therapy” risk lasting psychological damage, spiritual damage, and even death. Celibacy is a gift of the Holy Spirit, and so few are called to it. I personally know nuns, monks, and clergymen who live a life of celibacy, and they are the least judgmental people I know because they can personally attest to the calling of celibacy which I cannot.
Before we go judging a parent for supporting a gay, lesbian, or transgender child, know that their child’s life is on-the-line. For when one parent fully supports a child’s sexual orientation, the suicide rate drops by 40%. For a transgender child, the suicide rate drops by 75% when a parent is supportive. Also, the LGBTQIA+ experience is 3 to 9 times higher in the Autism community than the general population. Acceptance of the LGBTQ+ person has nothing to do with sexual activity or cross dressing but the Sanctity of Life and Human Dignity. Come spend some time with me where I volunteer in religious trauma recovery outside of my private practice to see how reality backs up the science.
The Church first has to admit that they have been wrong in the application of Church Teaching being used to endanger, harm, and abuse special populations, not the actual teachings themselves which I respect as a guardrail. Observe Bishop Wester of Santa Fe, New Mexico and Bishops Stowe of Lexington, Kentucky, German Bishops, and Flemish Bishops who are already confessed their wrong-doings and are making changes. Continued willful denial of life issues and science will continue endanger, harm, and abuse special populations within the Church and broader society.