How Can I Relate To Someone Struggling With Gender Identity?

Trying to relate to someone struggling with gender identity is problematic because that experience is filled with uncertainty and subjectivity.

However, That does not mean moral and biological absolutes do not exist.

Biology only allows for two “sexes” as part of reproduction. And the Bible tells us that these two biological sexes are part of God’s design of humanity and are described as male and female. As part of that design, the male and female biological sexes are “good” and are essential to God’s purpose for humanity which is to “be fruitful, multiply, and fill the earth” (Gen. 1:26-28).

Considering those absolutes, it is logical that we would want to argue the absolutes. And there is a place for that. However, the experience created by these questions is far from absolute. And if we are honest, there is much in our experience that doesn’t line up with the biological and biblical absolutes.

Our struggles may not be with gender identity, but we still struggle with relating God’s word to the falseness of God’s world. We can find common ground in understanding the struggle with gender identity, similar to our struggles with a fallen world.

In God and the Transgender Debate, Andrew T. Walker writes:

“Gender dysphoria is a deep, painful struggle, causing pain, anguish, and tears. But it is not the only struggle.

“The whole world struggles; the whole world cries out, one way or another. The good news of the gospel is that those groans have been heard and those groans need not last. As adopted sons and daughters of God, our gnawing sense of despair about the world or about ourselves is met with a promise that someday God is going to renew creation. So not only will the feelings of dysphoria be re-moved, but the conditions that give rise to dysphoria in the first place will be eradicated as well.

“The gospel does not promise that any of us will experience this freedom, this sense of wholeness and rightness, right now. We are waiting, which means the person with dysphoria may never know a life apart from dysphoria until God restores creation. They may not know it until Christ brings them to heaven, or returns to bring heaven to earth. But they will know it.

“So the Bible acknowledges how things are, even in the deepest and darkest moments-but it also promises that we need not be left there. It teaches us to groan, but to groan with hope- to acknowledge the brokenness and to cling to the escape from the brokenness that God has provided. (God and the Transgender Debate, Pg. 83)

May God give us the courage to recognize our own struggles with the fallen world and the grace to relate to those who struggle in a very different way from us.