LDS Gender

For those seeking understanding of gender identity issues from an LDS perspective

A third example of an active, transsexual Mormon

Looks like the dam is beginning to burst. This is not only the third example I know of of an LDS person who is transsexual and also active. It’s just the third one mentioned here on this website. At the No More Strangers blog an Ann Karvalos writes about, “Lessons Learned: Going Back To Church After Transition.” The whole thing is worth reading (not that every point made there is agreed upon by the writers of this blog), but here’s a couple good quotes:

For months, I had let fear and doubt keep me from attending. For a brief period, I had lost my testimony of the church. I still believed in the restoration, the Book of Mormon and in the gospel generally, but I made some common mistakes that keep many trans* people away. In this article, I want to discuss the lessons I learned in hopes that others will not have to go through this soul-wrenching experience.…

If you are a trans* member who has either transitioned or is considering transition, don’t believe the internet hype about the church. You can still be active in the church. You can still keep your testimony and sustain our (imperfect) leaders. Just like our pioneer forebears, the walk will not be very easy but is worth every step.

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2 thoughts on “A third example of an active, transsexual Mormon

  1. I’m a devoted church member who is a transsexual man. I’m out as such to my ward, Bishop, and Stake President. I’m welcome in Priesthood meeting and although I know there are those who don’t really understand, I sense no hostility or judgement and have felt very loved, especially by my Stake Pres. I quoted the second paragraph of The Family: A Proclamation as part of my testimony and used it as a springboard to introduce the ideas that gender and ASAB AREN’T the same and that I’m one of relatively few people whose gender and bodies are incongruent. This allowed me to come out to my ward without using medical jargon or psychobabble to explain myself in a non-threatening way. I’ve told my stake pres. exactly what my plans are with regards to medical treatment for my gender dysphoria as well as provided both him and my bishop letters from my transition counselor in which she disagrees with its being considered a psychiatric disorder but says that I meet its DSM-5 definition and transitioning is necessary for my well-being, and while my bishop cautioned me that even though my sexual orientation is heterosexual I could be (not WOULD be) excommunicated should I marry a cis woman (because as far as church records go sex and gender are synonymous and gender can’t be changed on them so I’d be considered an active lesbian, a lifestyle I’ve never followed), there’s been no talk of excommunication for being transsexual and seeking the recommended treatment. While I am ineligible for priesthood ordination and must cross-dress and sit on the wrong side of the room to receive the temple blessings my patriarchal blessing promises (a prospect that makes me feel physically sick), all things considered, I’m very glad that it’s finally safe to live authentically now that Church policies are being interpreted less rigidly. I was closeted for over thirty years, including twenty during which I’ve been involved with and married to a man who’s impotent for medical reasons and who now has less than two years to live due to complications that prevent his getting a replacement aorta. I’m very blessed that he’s always understood me, loved me anyway, and is supportive.

    • The Handbook of Instructions only speaks out about “elective” transsexual operations. If your surgeries and transition are “non-elective” the Handbook has nothing to say about that (meaning that no penalty is mentioned for it).

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