Church: Let kids choose their gender


This was the headline in a news article I read yesterday, about new Church of England's guidance for nursery and primary schools.  As a mum from a Christian background, and with Christian beliefs, the words just don't sit right with me.  They're talking about nursery and primary school age children!

Addressing an issue

As I dove into the story, and after some additional reading of other articles and viewpoints, I have a better understanding of the context behind this a bit more.  Church of England says it's to help counter transphobic bullying and allow children the freedom to discover "the possibilities of who they might be".  That premise I can support because I hate bullying of any kind and will morph into a mama bear if i see it happening to my kids or anyone.  I consider myself to be fairly liberal and certainly wouldn't not freak out if I saw my daughter playing with a fireman's truck, or my son with a fairy wand.  My daughter hates pink and loves blue, so what?  I don't see why I or anyone else should try to change her mind about this, or panic that this might be indicative of something else. I was a proper tomboy growing up, liked playing rough games, climbing trees, had more friends who were boys than girls and fought constantly with my mum about me wearing dresses (because I didn't like them).  So I think I did explore the "trying on" stage of life.  My support however, stops there.

Complex issues

Perhaps I'm being too simplistic and only referring to surface issues with the examples I gave.  At no point during my exploring did I think I might be a boy, and this was made easier by the fact that no one encouraged me to explore my thoughts on that issue.  I understand there are children who genuinely go through inner conflicts on the gender issue.  I've read many articles that suggest that the suicide rate in the transgender community is high and getting higher still, and for those affected there are many complex issues.   These are very sensitive issues that as a society we have to find a way to work through.

I have nothing against anyone in that community, I love you as I love everyone else, mean you no harm and will fight for you if you're being unfairly treated, but I don't agree with that lifestyle, and it is not for me.  I believe there are lies if not checked become easier to accept and adopt as truth.  I'm with Genesis 1:27 - "So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them".  This tells me that when God created humankind he created each with body parts and thought processes that categorise/label you as one or the other, male or female, not both.  Verse 31 tells me "God saw all that he had made, and it was very good", not sometimes, not "oops I made a mistake with this one, so it's okay to swap from one to the other when you feel like it".

Opening the door?

Back to the issue, should we leave the door open for a nursery or primary school children to decide if they are male or female? Church of England is this what you are saying? If people aren't legally allowed to make decisions like drinking alcohol, drive a car, vote or have sex until a certain age, why do you think it's okay for a child to decide a fundamental, life changing decision such as their gender? You can't trust a 6 year old to remember to brush his/her teeth before going to bed, yet you want to trust them with knowing that even though born one gender they are actually another?

Questions, questions

What if they change their minds in a few years or when they become adults?  This is a very scary and dangerous door you're opening.  The slippery slope is steep.  Where do you draw the line with "discovering possibilities", "trying out the many cloaks of identity" without losing what you should stand for - the word of God?  What's the point of having a Church of England school which should be upholding and teaching morals and principles based on the bible, if you're going to water down and dilute those same principles to accommodate everyone.  What about more focus on teaching children to love themselves just as they are because we are all uniquely created?  What about the confusion such guidance gives rise to for other children who otherwise are not "confused" about their gender?  Why be a Church of England school?  What does that even mean anymore?


I don't see why I should be told off and punished for calling a girl a girl because she decided she wants to be called a boy as in the case of Joshua Sutcliffe Oxford teacher faces action over 'misgendering' pupil.   Granted this is a secondary school case, but that scary door is definitely open.

If my child expresses feelings of confusion about their identity, do me a favour and counter it with biblical truth, and reinforcement of how special and unique they are, just as they are, not molly-cuddling and talk of "it's okay to be gender neutral if you want".  If they decided to be a thief would you entertain that line of thinking?  No, I didn't think so.

What are your thoughts on this issue?

2 thoughts on “Church: Let kids choose their gender”

  1. Interesting read, thanks for speaking on such a “touchy” topic. I’m a mum of a son. I grew up in a culture that was very homophobic. When my son was a toddler and even in grade school he gravitated toward girls. He liked to play with the boy toys as well as girl toys. You see he was being raised primarily by women; myself, mother, and grandmother. Also I had a younger sister (close to his age) who he spent much time with. One of my greatest fears was that he would choose a gay lifestyle later in life. I had a brother who did so. He would dress in women’s clothing, wear makeup, and wigs. I loved him dearly but I didn’t agree with his lifestyle. To be honest for a long time I struggled with that fear and I found myself extremely uncomfortable around people who appeared to look opposite of their natural gender. If was the mum that would freak out and yell when I saw my son playing with girl toys.

    As I have matured I have become less afraid. I have realized that God made my son wonderfully and He has plans that are good for him (Jeremiah 29:11). God’s plans for my son will exceed mine and whatever the future holds for him I know that it will all work together for his good (Romans 8:28). As you mentioned I also reflected on my youth and how I was a tomboy. I chose to play sports with the boys, dress like them sometimes, and my best friends were either boys or tomboys. I definitely went through an “exploration” phase. There were times that I felt more like a boy and wished I was a boy but it was always reinforced that I was a girl! I had experienced abuse, neglect, and abandonment and during those times I felt unloved, unwanted, lonely, ugly, depressed, and I hated myself. I was confused about a lot of things concerning my life but the easiest thing to alter was my identity. It wasn’t until I learned of the truth about me that I was able to heal from those painful things and be the me I was created to be. I began to love myself, finally! Not only did my relationship with God reveal my true identity and worth but others as well. Since I believe He made us ALL wonderfully in His image and likeness I learned to focus on that alone.

    Recently I went to a college football game where I saw male cheerleaders, one of who is now legally married to my male cousin. My old, fearful mindset would’ve freaked out and been disgusted but God gave me a gentle reminder! They’re mine and your job is to love! It’s love that covers all and changes people’s lives. So I reached out to my cousin and showed love. If it hadn’t been for people loving me with the love of God even while in my messy lifestyle I would still be in it! Besides the greatest commandment is to love others, regardless of what they do or say, just love (Mark 12:31). That’s something I finally got after being a recepient of love.

    I truly believe there are deep roots to this issue of gender. Science says people are born a certain way, which I realize there are people born with both parts. Psychology says it’s mental, emotional, and behavioral. I can agree slightly but ultimately I believe it’s at the core; it’s spiritual. You mentioned about lies and lies are the opposite of truth. Lies originate from one place according to John 8:44. Lies manipulate and bring confusion but the truth sets free and gives clarity. The ultimate truth comes from God, Jesus is the truth John 14:6. When You know Him you know truth and no lie or confusion can stand against that knowledge. Question: Isn’t the mission of the church to set people free from sin and death (salvation), make disciples, and all of what Ephesians 4:11-15 discusses? We live in a world where anything goes but isn’t the church not of this world?

    1. Thanks for taking the time to comment, for your detailed insights and joining in the debate on this issue. It is definitely enlightening to hear your personal experience and I’m glad both you and your son are basking in the truth of God’s word – we are all fearfully and wonderfully made. Like you said the subject is touchy and I can only pray if ever faced with the same issues as you found with your son that I would act with as much grace and trust.

      I would like the church to stand on truth and with divine wisdom stand firmly on that truth instead of bowing to political correctness.

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