My Sexuality & My Faith

Several months ago, a friend shared with me that she referenced my “church friends,” and her boyfriend said, “Sarah, church?” Her boyfriend and I had previously shared conversations about our experiences with non-monogamy, and I might have slept with his cousin once (…I did). “Woman of God” was perhaps not what came to mind for him when he thought of my open sexuality.

If you look at my Instagram profile today, you will see the words “Christian,” “queer,” and “slut” side by side (with a few others in between). And I’m sure my friend’s boyfriend was not the first person to be surprised at this combination of things.

I am not alone in living at this intersection. I had a conversation with a friend who has a strong faith and is making decisions for her career future, in which she said “I don’t know if I’m try’n to be a lawyer or a stripper,” and I responded, “girl, I feel that.” We are multifaceted people.

There are social media profiles like @beloved_arise and @adameli that openly share stories of queer religious folk. Nevertheless, we are certainly still a minority of a minority. People may side-eye us like we’re doing something wrong, because something in their brain is not clicking…and it’s not totally their fault. We live in a culture that places faith and sexual liberation in opposition, when in fact, they can coexist beautifully together.

The Mainstream Narrative

Many religious people have negated any and all productive messages about sex, and as a result, many sex educators hear religion and think throw the whole thing out.

Hosts of the podcast Girls Gotta Eat, Ashley Hesseltine and Rayna Greenberg, talk candidly about many facets of sex unapologetically. Their episode with comedian Usama Siddiquee is called “From Devout to DTF,” and discusses his experience being raised in Muslim purity culture. They bring attention to the important issue of children growing up with misinformation and shame around sex. The solution, it seems, is the hell with religion altogether.

Many people were raised in a conservative religious community or at a house of worship where they were scarred by experiences of blatant sex-negativity, sexism, homophobia, and transphobia. I will never forget a video we watched in one of my sex education classes where a Christian leader standing before a group of teenagers described women’s sexuality as tape, getting less sticky – less utile and desirable – the more things it is stuck on – the more sexual partners she has. Religious trauma is real and should not be underestimated.

Some folks were spared this fate because they were raised without religion at all, but they heard enough bad things about religion from others that they believed the whole thing was, indeed, trash. Many have found ways to connect spiritually without organized religion, in a way that is conducive to their sexuality.

In The New Bottoming Book (which they reference in my favorite The Ethical Slut), the two authors Dossie Easton and Janet Hardy write: “When you bring spiritual awareness to your sexual practice, you can become directly conscious of–connected to–that divinity that always flows through you….For us, sex is already an opportunity to see God.”

For me personally, taking up yoga in recent years and taking classes on topics like tantra have expanded my view of the mind, body, and spirit connection. I find it beautiful how we call God by many different names – creator, divine, mother, nature, universe….

AND, I think you should be able to keep calling on Allah or Jesus Christ if you want to while expressing yourself sexually how you see fit.

Shitty Church History

As a Christian myself, I wondered where sex-negativity in Christianity came from. In Dan Brown’s historically-based novel The DaVinci Code, characters Leigh Teabing and Robert Langdon converse about the start of the first church following the death of Jesus:

β€œConstantine turned Jesus into a deity who existed beyond the scope of the human world, an entity whose power was unchallengeable…now the followers of Christ were able to redeem themselves only via the established sacred channel–the Roman Catholic Church.”

“For the early Church,” Langdon explained in a soft voice, “mankind’s use of sex to commune directly with God posed a serious threat to the Catholic power base. It left the Church out of the loop, undermining their self-proclaimed status as the sole conduit to God. For obvious reasons, they worked hard to demonize sex and recast it as a disgusting and sinful act. Other major religions did the same.”

Prior to Constantine’s power-hungry manipulation, most people in ancient Rome had a relationship between their sexuality and their spirituality. In the below clip from the movie adaptation of the book (at 2:24 to 3:15), Langdon and Teabing explain how leaders at the time were threatened by “free-thinking women” and silenced sexual and feminist narratives that got in the way of them ruling the world.

So, all this is to say, the first major church, the Roman Catholic Church, has kind of always sucked. At the beginning, its leaders were not motivated by living in alignment with the teachings of Jesus Christ, but by keeping emperors rich and happy.

Centuries after the fall of Rome, figures like Martin Luther and John Calvin questioned Catholic norms like offering salvation in exchange for money, and they split off into the Protestant church. A few more centuries after that, Protestantism has split into so many sects that it includes everything from conservative Bible Belt denominations to my own United Church of Christ (UCC).

My Church

Many people who grow up in a conservative church, whether Protestant or Catholic, don’t know their other options, or are afraid to step out and try the unfamiliar. Yes, the Catholics are still around, not allowing women or gender-expansive people to hold positions of power, trying to fit ancient rules to modern life and creating an image of hypocrisy for Christians everywhere. I think Pope Francis secretly knows what’s up, but progress is sloooow over there. I am lucky that my former-Irish-Catholic mother and Italian-Catholic father decided that black-and-white stances on divorce (People can’t leave their abusers?) and general “Catholic guilt” were enough to push them out of their comfort zones and into finding a different kind of church.

The history of the United Church of Christ includes some great moments, like being the first Christian denomination to ordain a woman in 1853 and to ordain an openly gay person in 19721. It also includes questionable things like being built in a racist system, as many of our churches started as town meeting houses in colonial America.

I am glad to see that the UCC is always working for progress and justice. Since 1985, they have encouraged congregations to go through a process to become “Open and Affirming,”2 a designation which means they are explicitly inclusive of LGBTQ+ individuals in all aspects of church life. I have seen individual churches that have struggled with these ideas, and I have chosen to be a part of a church that does this beautifully.

My church now attracted me with rainbow doors outside. They sponsored a group including myself on an intensive racial justice training, and the first thing one of my pastors did was πŸ‘ throw πŸ‘ out πŸ‘ all πŸ‘ the πŸ‘ images πŸ‘ of πŸ‘ white πŸ‘ Jesus πŸ‘. (That’s right, Jesus lived in the modern-day “Middle East.”) The same pastor preached a sermon a few months back about the importance of being called by your name of choice, highlighting the experiences of transgender people. (I highly recommend a listen here at 35:17 to 46:36, or starting at 24:50 for the full sermon intro.) In everything we do, we strive to focus on the origins of our faith – not Constantine, but Jesus – and his “greatest commandment,” to love one another.

A belief in this call and a faith community are things that many people are not interested in giving up, even as they embark on a journey to living their best sexual lives. Erica Smith says about her program Purity Culture DropoutTM, in which participants can rewrite their sexual values, “Not everyone renounces religion when they renounce purity culture.” So how exactly can our views about sex align with our views about God?

My Beliefs

My view on the topic can basically be summed up as follows: God created a human experience with sexual variety on purpose, and God wants us to live authentically to ourselves and in support of one another.

If you are a Torah or Old Testament believer, then you likely subscribe to the idea that we as humans are created “in God’s image.” Complete with vulvas and penises and vaginas and scrotums and nipples and prostates….

In The Ethical Slut, Easton & Hardy share: “We prefer the beliefs of a woman we met, a devoted churchgoer in a fundamentalist faith. She told us that when she was about five years old, she discovered the joys of masturbation in the back seat of the family car, tucked under a warm blanket on a long trip. It felt so wonderful that she concluded that the existence of her clitoris was proof positive that God loved her.”

God gave us this wild human experience with physical pleasure as a part of it (and even God experienced it, through Jesus Christ, if you’re a New Testament believer). Below is one of my favorite quotes:

Dear Human: You've got it al wrong.  You didn't come here to master unconditional love.  That is where you came from and where you'll return.  You came here to learn personal love.  Universal love.  Messy love.  Sweaty love.  Crazy love.  Broken love.  Whole love.  Infused with divinity.  Lived through the grace of stumbling.  Demonstrated through the beauty of...messing up.  Often.  You didn't come her to be perfect.  You already are.  You came here to be gorgeously human.  Flawed and fabulous.  And then to rise again into remembering.
Courtney Walsh

So no, I don’t believe in a god who created the universe and is mad about my dildos.

I worship a god who did all that and thinks my dildos are great. So long as they are a positive force in the world.

Therapist and content-creator Dr. Sprankle shared another tweet in which he pointed out that “Masturbation, porn, and sex work can be engaged in healthily.” And of course, some sex-negativity-indoctrinated folks came to the rescue (sarcasm) in the Instagram comments, pointing out ways they’d perceived masturbation, porn, and sex work to go wrong. In response, I chimed in: “Key words ‘can be.’ Doesn’t mean ‘always is.’ There are definitely cases where porn isn’t engaged with healthily. There are also cases where alcohol or gambling are engaged with unhealthily, and then there are people who know the line between a good time and harmful behavior.”

Another Instagram user with handle @h.alice.m added on: “hell there’s even times when what we deem as inherently healthy activities can be engaged in unhealthily! Exercise, eating avocados, etc etc.”

To quote The Ethical Slut again: “There is nothing in the world so terrific that it can’t be abused if you’re determined to do so: familial connections can be violated, sexual desire can be manipulated. Even chocolate can be abused. Abuse doesn’t change the basic wonderfulness of any of these things: the danger lies in the motivation of the abuser, not the nature of the item.”

I even heard a sermon about this topic once when I was younger. The preacher talked about how money is not bad, greed is; substances are not inherently bad, but substance abuse can be a problem; etc. And my horny mind extrapolated what was not said: sex is not bad unless it is used for bad.

If you’d rather stay away from money, substances, masturbation, porn, sex work, gambling, avocados, or chocolate altogether, that’s your prerogative. It is not my own choice to do so, and it is not one that I believe my faith prescribes. So long as I am taking care of my neighbor and myself in the process, I can kink it up to my heart’s desire.

More Work To Do

Although I have never attended a church that has told me not to use birth control, I have also never been to a church that has explicitly told me the above. I’ve had to interpret my faith to figure that out on my own.

I recently got drinks with our head pastor (yes, that’s a thing), and I shared with her (yes, her) about my identity as non-monogamous, including that for me, a lot of it “is about sex.” She did not chastise me or even look at me funny. She acknowledged how difficult it must be for me to find my most natural existence as one that goes against the grain. She encouraged me to keep down my own path, as the alternative “is like death, is like feeling not alive.” And don’t I know it.

The feeling of “other” I sometimes experience is analogous to that of groups that we clearly welcome into our church family. If you are gay or trans or Black or an immigrant or need an ASL interpreter to worship with us, you are welcome. As is said in our sanctuary every Sunday, “no matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here.” I look forward to the day when we can be unafraid to say that yes, we really mean sluts included. Dominatrixes, polyamorous triads, and teenagers making their sexual debuts are all integral parts of “the glory of God’s creation.” In a society where our media tells us that churches are anti-sex, how powerful it would be to stake a claim that we are not.

Faith does not preclude sexual freedom, and sexual freedom does not preclude faith. I hope that those of us who value both can know this and can live our lives feeling fully aligned.

1UCC Firsts

2LGBT History Timeline

Lyrics of Holidays Past

White male-presenting individual with short brown hair wearing red winter jacket and gold ring is holding and looking down at cell phone and appears to be listening to music through attached headphones, large green wreath with red bow in background

Trigger warning: This post contains themes of sexual assault.

As a feminist and progressive, I regularly find myself hearing things from years past and cringing. I recently watched the 17-year old movie Love Actually for the first time, and was telling some of the characters on my screen, “I don’t think you can say that anymore,” as they made fat jokes. I even found myself reacting differently to the beloved Mean Girls of my adolescence as an adult.

Each year around this time, holiday music provides us with an opportunity to slip even deeper into the past for a brief visit. Many of the classics we’ve been listening to for the past five weeks originated during the 1940s and ’50s, or even the 1800s.

We smile at images of sleigh rides through the snow and chestnuts popping over the fire.

We hear about children who ask for gifts traditional to their genders:

A pair of Hopalong boots and a pistol that shoots

Is the wish of Barney and Ben

Dolls that’ll talk and will go for a walk

Is the hope of Janice and Jen

It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas (1951)

First comes the stocking of little Nell

Oh dear Santa, fill it well

Give her a dolly that laughs and cries

One that can open and shut its eyes…

Look in the stocking of little Bill

Oh just to see what a glorious fill

Here is a hammer and lots of tacks

A whistle and a ball and a whip that cracks

Up on the Housetop (1864)

And then, of course, there’s the recently controversial “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” (1944), in which a young woman struggles to balance the competing demands of pleasing a man, doing what would be considered acceptable, and doing what she personally wants (which is hard to definitively decipher).

Many 21st century duos have recorded this song with the original words, including the version on one of my favorite albums, Brett Eldredge’s Glow (2016). Some of the lyrics like “my maiden aunt’s mind is vicious” and “my brother will be there at the door” sound almost silly coming out of the mouth of millennial Meghan Trainor.

In 2018, pair Kelly Clarkson and John Legend released an updated version of the song, telling the story how it should go in the modern era, and I’m amazed I went two years without hearing it (until now)!

Rather than handing the female character drinks of which she doesn’t know the contents (“say, what’s in this drink?”) and trying to persuade her to stay, the male character says of her indecision about having another, “it’s your body and your choice,” and calls her an Uber home. In response to her concerns about her judgmental family members, he even jokes, “what do you still live at home for?”

The man still compliments the woman, saying “your eyes are like starlight” and “gosh your lips look delicious,” but he respects her decisions all the way through, even saying “I want you to stay, it’s not up to me.” We find out at the end of the song that she makes the decision to stay, giving a nice “screw you” to what anyone else might think.

When we listen to the classics and the modern remakes, we can see how much has changed and how much has stayed the same, not just in the songs, but in the world we live in. In the simple fact that I can recognize the gender roles in toys and the expectations of a single young woman as “old-fashioned,” I know we have made some progress. But I’d be naive to say we don’t still treat little boys and girls differently or that we don’t continue to perpetuate sexism and rape culture in our music.

There are still new songs coming out that sound a lot like the original “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” Check out some lyrics from “She Lovin’ It” (2017):

She said that she don’t wanna be loved

I said, ‘why the hell are you here?’

She said tonight she don’t wanna be touched

And if that’s the truth, why you so near?…

She lovin’ it

I know that she say that she don’t, but she do

Trey Songz

It’s hard to tell whether there’s some playful sexual tension being created by the woman Trey describes, or his character is actually sexually assaulting her. Without more context provided, these lyrics have the potential to encourage some shitty behavior.

Music both past and present can be used as a caricature of society, pointing out its flaws, and allowing us to ask some important questions about what kind of culture we want to promote going forward.

We must continue to rewrite the story, like John and Kelly did. We can make the choices that additional years of history have afforded us the ability to make, and we can continue to push the envelope.

We can call out slut-shaming and remind each other what consent looks like. We can teach young men that sexual assault prevention is as much or more their job as it is women’s. We can stop telling children that child-rearing is a mother’s job, buy our little boys dolls too, and keep toy guns out of the house altogether. We can influence the songs of the next generation.

Dear Good Cop

Uniformed police officer in shadow faces away toward city lights

Hey, good cop. No, not you, who went into law enforcement because you wanted to feel powerful and carry a gun. You, who joined the force because of your genuine desire to protect and serve. And you, who took a job in marginalized or underserved community, maybe even as a member of a that community, hoping to be a positive influence.

I want to acknowledge that 2020 has been a very hard time for you. You have put your own safety at risk to be on the front lines during this pandemic. I know you may be trying to do your job well so you can provide for your family, and that has felt at risk. I know you may feel afraid for your life more than usual. You may feel like the world is against you. These are difficult emotions to handle, and I see that.

You may be thinking that this is all unfair to you, because you only ever had good intentions. You may be wondering why things seemed fine for so long, and now everything has gotten so out of control.

First, I hope you can see that things have not been fine, even if they appeared that way. If you are white, I hope that you can reflect on some of the fear you may be feeling, and perhaps have a newfound sympathy for the fear that people of color face on a daily basis around the police. A fear that they truly cannot escape, because wherever they go, they are still in their skin. I hope that this perspective makes you a better cop, a more thoughtful and intentional cop.

Second, I hope that you can acknowledge that you may not have known everything about the institution you were excited to join. I’m not blaming you for this. I work for a 157-year old company, and I certainly didn’t research every piece of its history before I signed up to do a job I thought I would like. But I am saying: the time has come to learn more. The time has come to think about how the police started in the U.S., who they were meant to protect, and who they considered a threat. The time has come to think about how that has changed and how it has stayed the same.

The time has come to become aware of your biases, handed down to you by your upbringing, your culture, and your training. To uncover the unconscious and hold it up to the light. To be brutally honest with yourself, even if it’s embarrassing or disappointing. Not to get defensive or make excuses. But to say, ‘now I know, and I will do better.’ To hold yourself and others to a higher and higher standard.

If you want to truly be the ‘good cop’ that you set out to be, you will help create an equal world for all people, including in the eyes of the law. You will be an active participant in the change that needs to take place in policing. And you will be a leader in the movement to end systemic racism across all parts of society.

If you’re looking for a place to start, check out this episode of “Uncomfortable Conversations with a Black Man,” Emmanuel Acho, with members of the police department in the town of Petaluma, CA.

2020 Parallels: Pandemics & Race Movements

If you think this mask makes it hard to breathe, try being black in America!

A lot of folks have been writing off 2020 for months. And like…fair. It certainly wasn’t what I had in mind when we I was posting a cute “roaring ’20s” photos on January 1st.

But just like nothing magically changed when the clock hit midnight that day, no switch will flip on January 1st of next year, either. So don’t be too quick to wish 2020 away. (Although I hope 2021 comes with a vaccine and a new president.)

In a recent conversation with my pastor, she expressed that “2020 [is] the year that none of us wanted but maybe all of us needed.” 2020 has so much to teach. It is doing so at the unique intersection of two of the biggest events in my life: a pandemic and a mass-reckoning with racial injustice.

If one of these things happened on its own, it would still be a year for the history books. But neither event would have the same impact alone that they have together. It is important that they are happening at the same time.

In the Media

In a video posted on her Instagram, Senator and Vice Presidential Candidate Kamala Harris says “there’s so much about this pandemic that has accelerated what was a problem before.” Like racial inequities in employment and healthcare, for starters. COVID has brought these to the forefront along with the police brutality in the news. And it has given many of us time at home to watch and listen and reflect.

On an episode of the Michelle Obama podcast, one of Michelle’s mentees, a Black woman and former White House employee, shared the following:

I’m trying to process why when I initially saw these videos of the Sandra Blands and the Philando Castiles, why I didn’t feel this same anger and hurt…when I first saw them that I’m feeling now, and I think a lot of that has to do with the pandemic, and the mere fact that I am forced to sit in it and sit with it, whereas before, it was business as usual; you saw it, and you’re like ‘damn, another one,’ and then you kept going. But right now, since everything is at a standstill, I’m processing these things a little bit more in-depth than I ever have before.

Chynna Clayton

As a white woman, much about my processing looks different than Chynna’s. But I, too, would not have my current perspectives without this year’s overlap in events.

A Personal Realization

Earlier in the summer, I was doing some classic white people shit…I was playing a round of golf. My first of the year (and maybe my third ever…I’m new at this).

This was back when the world was first starting to open up again, after we’d all been staying home as much as possible. For several weeks, even going to the grocery store was exhausting, the possibility of COVID lurking around any turn. And at home, when we weren’t actively stressed by the unknown, we were constantly thinking about it and talking about how quickly our lives had changed.

So I finally got outside, saw a coworker in person, and focused on something remedial…hitting a ball toward a hole (slowly but surely). Somewhere around the fifth hole, I realized I hadn’t thought about the pandemic since I took off my mask an hour ago. To my surprise, I had actually relaxed and felt “normal” for a while.

As I sighed in relief, a second realization followed. What I had just experienced was new to me. ‘But I bet people of color experience this all the time.’

I saw COVID everywhere for a few weeks. Black people experienced this on top of seeing oppression everywhere for a lifetime. I fear my family getting sick. A dreamer fears this, and that their family gets deported. I was exhausted at talking about working from home. People of color are exhausted by the ways their work lives have changed, and by explaining microaggressions to their coworkers. I found refuge in a round of golf. Where do they find refuge?

On the same episode of her podcast referenced earlier, Michelle says, “Sometimes we turn off to it, because that’s our break. If I gotta wake up everyday and face the world as it is right now…ugh…sometimes you gotta turn it off just to get through it.”

Michelle also says, “You can’t understand what you don’t know. And when you’re white in this country, you have the luxury of only knowing what you know.”

Before the pandemic, I had the luxury of not knowing the feeling of navigating a world that is not built for my comfort. Now, I and other white people have a point of reference that helps us to understand the experience of people of color a little more.

Call to Reflection

Take a moment to think about how much 2020 has taught you, before it’s even over. Maybe you, too, have had a personal realization or two. Maybe you’ve taken the world up on its offer to educate you on race with documentaries and podcasts and Instagram slide shows. Maybe you’ve decided to learn more about politics and play an active role the upcoming election.

Maybe you have learned how to clear space in your life and say goodbye to “the old” that no longer serves you. Maybe you have learned how to care for yourself in a time that feels really difficult. Maybe you’ve lost a job, or even lost someone to COVID, and you’ve learned about your strength and perseverance.

Whatever you have learned, keep learning, and use what you learn.

To borrow another idea from my pastor: You were made “for just such a time as this” (Esther 4:14). You were made for a year with a pandemic and race movements.

I understand the desire to skip ahead to a time where things are “back to normal.” But things will never go back to how they were in February or in 2019, because 2020 is changing each one of us. I hope it changes us for the better.

Microaggressions & What it Means to be Queer

This year, I’ve heard the term “microaggression” more than ever before. I was discussing the topic with a long-time friend of mine and kindred spirit. As a teacher and generally good conversationalist, she has a way of turning my curiosities into questions she can pose back to me. At this time, she asked me whether I have experience with microaggressions since I am bisexual. I thought for a second and responded “no, not really.”

Most of the people I surround myself with know enough about bisexuality by now to not say things like “this is just a pit-stop on the way to being gay” or “it’s not fair that you have twice as many options.”

My experience is certainly colored by the fact that I am “straight-presenting.” I have only had serious relationships with men to date. When I bring up my interest in women, it is by choice. So I often bring it up in situations in which I figure it will be well received, like when a guy friend is talking to me about a “hot babe.”

I am also lucky that certain generalizations that are often misconceptions actually fit me. Society often assumes bisexuals want to engage in group sex or other forms of non-monogamy, which I’m happy to correct. But it doesn’t get under my skin, because I am interested in these things.

Still, when my friend asked me about microaggressions in my life, I did have some come to mind…of a slightly different variety.

Although people in 2020 have seen characters on their TV screens kissing both men and women for some years now, pop culture education on ethical nonmonogamy (ENM) is much newer. (For a show that delves into both at the same time, I highly recommend The Bold Type on Freeform.)

The microaggressions I’m familiar with come from well-intentioned friends trying to understand what I’m saying when I express my desire to be open to multiple sexual partners…forever. Most commonly, I hear, “you might change your mind,” or get the question: “do you think you just feel this way because you haven’t met the one yet?”

I could change my mind. I can’t claim to know what the future will hold. And I will volunteer this. But the very suggestion undermines the validity of my identity. It subtly points out to me that the way I find it most natural to interact with the world is “other,” of which I am already acutely aware.

But how am I supposed to know what to say? This is all new to me. There are so many terms, I can’t keep up.

This sentiment is reasonable. What was once “LGBT” never seems to stop growing with new letters, like “A” for asexual and “N” for non-binary. And still, so many identities and expressions are not captured. I recently heard a joke on a podcast with a serious message to the effect of: “we have no idea what the kids are gonna be coming out as in ten years.”

It can be easy to wonder whether all of the differentiation is necessary. And I hope that one day, it will not be. In my conversation with my friend, I expressed a desire for a world in which there is no coming out, but we simply respect the consensual existences of others without judgement or a need for approval.

But we are not there yet. We are in a place where individuals like myself who are anything other than cisgender, straight, one-penis-for-the-rest-of-forever, “vanilla” sex kind of people look for terms that remind us we are not alone, that help us to find others navigating “otherness” too.

In addition, these terms allow people who don’t have a particular non-traditional experience to do a Google search to learn more about it. It is no one’s fault if something is new to them. But it is their decision if they choose not to learn more.

So when a friend is telling us something about themself that doesn’t jive with our preconceived ideas, let us approach it with a curious mindset. And let us truly listen, not to respond, but to hear what they’re making an effort to tell us. The more we do this, the quicker we’ll get to the ideal world I described.

A few days after talking to my friend, she sent me a tweet quoting bell hooks:

“Damn she so eloquently summed up what we were trying to talk towards,” my friend wrote. Yep; she hit the nail on the head. For me, it has never been as simple as being attracted to people of multiple genders. It has always been about finding my way in a world in which so much of what I am is not the norm.

Since then, I have identified as queer. The term is at the same time less precise and more accurate than any I’ve used before.

For more information on ethical nonmonogamy, check out my Resources page.