More Links Than Usual

I’m overnight shift at the shelter, listening to homeless people snore and reading queer stuff online and I stumbled across this article – – which contains a couple things that I suspect are specific to the writer because I am unable to believe that craving salt and pickles are common among trans-lesbians. I’ve never actually “dated as a trans-lesbian” – well, I have because I’m trans-lesbian and I’ve dated, but I appear to most people to be a straight man, and I wasn’t able to fully and completely identify as a trans-lesbian until this year, so it wasn’t a thing that we talked about. Except for the one who explained to me that identity and orientation were not necessarily related, thus helping me to see that I was trans-lesbian, but she never accepted it or maybe she did, I dunno. She mentally and emotionally abused me for seven years, ending in 2003. I have no idea what she actually thought about anything. I have no reason to suspect that she did either.

Anyhow, I read the article and then accidentally looked at the comments which were the standard transphobic tripe that I’ve come to expect from lesbians who are determined to live down to the stereotype. I could have resisted temptation to stir the shit, but I didn’t. My comment ended with the phrase “fuck TERFs”. I am not sorry.

But I was thinking earlier today, that Jesus helped me accept that I am trans-lesbian. It occurred to me after I watched “Yes, God, Yes” on Netflix – it’s a movie about a teenage Catholic girl who is struggling with her sinful urges, goes to a Catholic retreat, and figures some things out. It was good, but also made me kinda uncomfortable because it got too close to my teen shame. And I wasn’t even Catholic – I was Anabaptist. I’ve seen several good things about teens on Netflix lately (there’s prob’ly good stuff on other streaming services, but Netflix is the only one that I have my kid’s mom’s password to) – “Teenage Bounty Hunters”, “Everything Sucks” and “Never Have I Ever” have teens dealing with sexual feelings, including same-sex attractions and actions. “Teenage Bounty Hunters” also has a Christian element – the title characters are Christian. The thing I really like about “Teenage Bounty Hunters” and “Yes, God, Yes” is that the Christian characters don’t reject Christianity. That is what a lot of people do, sure, but it’s also a typical move for a movie – like portraying pot smoking as a super cool, fun, liberating adventure. Those might be true for some people, but for others they’re not.

I digress. I was on about portrayals of teens dealing with their exploding sexual feelings within the context of Christianity and I really like that this new possibility is being presented where people figure out a way of having both. Because Christianity is liberating. “It is for freedom that Christ set us free”, said Martin Luther. “Richer, fuller, deeper, Jesus’ love is sweeter, sweeter as the years go by” goes an old hymn.

As we live in Christ, as the awesome reality of that sinks in, we are liberated from sin, death, materialism, what other people think. We are able to realize that God loves us just as we are and that includes all of our shitty behavior, character defects, contradictions, insecurities, neuroses, perversions, quirks and whatthefuckever else ya got. Seriously, when y’re spiraling down the shame hole because you can’t believe what a horrible, disgusting, genuinely bad person you really are, that is the moment when you really oughta remind yourself that God isn’t waiting for you to finally get your shit together to love you. God, the Absolute, the Totality of All That Is and More, loves you exactly as you are, you wretched slug. If you can get your bonnet around that concept, it will change yr furkin’ life.

So then I realized that it wasn’t until after I became a Christian that I was able to think deeply, screw up my courage and fully accept that I am a woman, who is in a male body, and who is attracted to women, and I don’t have to fucking do anything about that. I don’t have to wear make-up or shave my armpits – if I was in a female body I wouldn’t do those things – or take hormones or get surgery or shave my beard or anything. (I don’t like my chin. That’s why I have the beard.) It’s true that I’m not actively engaged in any romantic endeavors at the moment, so I don’t have to deal with those complications, but if I was, I wouldn’t have to deal with the whole trans-lesbian dating a XX-chromosome lesbian and pissing off the TERFs bullshit because I present as male. I’m also just aggro enough that I ain’t gonna let anybody push me out of any “queer spaces” that I might wander into – not that that’s likely to happen unless you count the comments section of “Go Mag” or “Autostraddle”. I truly don’t want to fuck a lesbian who doesn’t want to be fucked by me – or a straight woman either. And I don’t think that lesbians who don’t want to fuck someone who has a dick are transphobic – I don’t want to fuck someone who has a dick and I’m not misandrist. I just ain’t into dicks. I also ain’t into playing victim, which is what I see in the whole TERFs vs. transbians kerfuffle – marginalized peoples totally playing victim and blaming other marginalized peoples. This Husker Du song isn’t about this particular topic, but I’ma plug it in here anyway.

Some TERF don’t like me? Fuck you, TERF. That’s all there is to that, and I’m out. As my friend Painter Dave used to say before he died of cancer, “I been called worse by better.” Painter Dave was a bit of a racist and a self-proclaimed “Jed-Clambett-lookin’, redneck motherfucker”. What I’m sayin’ is I believe it’s better to love than to be loved, to understand than to be understood, but I also believe that if y’re gonna be a bear, be a grizzly bear. Maybe those are contradictory statements, but ya know what else is contradictory? Psalm 137 which starts out as a lament about being driven out of one’s homeland and ends with wanting to kill babies. That’s some troubling shit right there, which is why the Melodians left that bit out.

But that troubling shit is there for a reason. The Bible isn’t a rule book – it’s the Word of God as expressed by people, and people are complicated creatures. Sometimes we come up with sweet rocksteady vibes and sometimes we have really hateful thoughts and both of those have to be worked through if ya gonna get anywheres close to being a complete human being. It is flat out necessary for the Bible to include some difficult and frankly awful shit so that we can use it to deal with our own difficult and frankly awful shit. And I do mean deal with it.

Two typical ways people handle the Bible’s awful shit – a) throw out the Bible and become an insufferably self-righteous atheist; b) decide that it’s okay to engage in awful shit behavior, as long as you can quote the Bible about it. Both of those miss the mark.

The best way is to sit with it, pray over it and reconcile to it. That doesn’t mean deciding it’s okay to smash little ones on the rocks – remember what Jesus said about little ones, We have awful thoughts and feelings and we do awful things. That’s reality. Sit with it, pray over it and reconcile to it. That’s the way to get to a better, less awful place. That’s the way to accept your own contradictions, quit playing the victim, stop fighting with other marginalized peoples, and start doing some fuckin’ good in the world.

Wow. This has been a ramble, with more links than usual. This is what happens when I’m up all night and I already read everything on “Autostraddle”.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s