Jan 24, 2018

Gender X?

You've probably heard the saying "Pink is for girls.  Blue is for boys."  It's been the standard for identifying the gender differences between boys and girls for decades.

In the 1940s,  manufacturers settled on pink for girls and blue for boys, so Baby Boomers were raised with wearing the two colors.

Boys and girls.  Two genders. 

But in recent years, more and more states and districts are accepting the idea of recognizing a third gender option.  It's called "Gender X."  

Gender X is a way for people to identify themselves outside of the two traditional genders.  X is a designation that is not exclusively male or female and includes intersex, agender, amalgagender, androgynous, bigender, demigender, female-to-male, genderfluid, genderqueer, male-to-female, neutrois, nonbinary, pangender, third sex, transgender, transsexual and unspecified.

CNN is reporting that Washington state will begin issuing Gender X as an option beginning January 27.  This includes birth certificates, driver license and other forms of government identification.  Other states already on board or considering this include Vermont, California and Oregon. 

It appears that a shift is happening in how the culture views gender identity.  More parents are encouraging their children to play with toys that are traditionally for the opposite gender.  And TV shows like "I Am Jazz" follow the lives of transgender children.

You may have also heard that Target removed many of their separate toy sections for boys and girls.  The company said in a press release “Over the past year, guests have raised important questions about a handful of signs in our stores that offer product suggestions based on gender.  Right now, our teams are working across the store to identify areas where we can phase out gender-based signage to help strike a better balance.”

In the toy section, Target no longer uses colors like pink or blue on the back walls of shelves to denote gendered sections of their departments.  And in bedding, boys and girls sections have been merged into a single section. 

As leaders in children and family ministry it is vital that we are prepared to help teach kids and parents what God says about gender.  When God created us, He was very specific about there only being two genders.
But God made them male and female from the beginning of creation. -Jesus in Mark 10:6
When we embrace an agenda outside of God's plan, we undermine the building of healthy children and families. 

But we must also remember that we live in a broken, complicated world.  As we minister to children and families who are struggling with identity challenges, we must love them unconditionally and patiently walk with them toward God's plan for identity and family structure.  Without love, the truth will not be heard or accepted.  

If you'd like help with ministering to children and families who are struggling with gender identity, you can read this article.

Your turn.  The floor is yours.  What are your thoughts about Gender X?  Share your thoughts with everyone in the comment section below.

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