I’m writing this from a computer lab at my temporary residence in New York City, where I’ve landed to work on the Religious Institute‘s new “faith and sexuality” guidebook on bisexuality and faith. I’m surrounded by what has been called the “dream team” of bisexual activism — wait, not just surrounded by, but part of it. At last, I can put all those days of being picked last in gym behind me. I’m on the bisexual dream team! (As a side note, I learned while preparing for this meeting that queer-identified youth tend to dislike team sports. I wonder why …)
I’m so excited to begin work tomorrow and to better get to know the amazing people from diverse faiths who are doing this work. As part of my preparation, I studied some of the current research on bisexuality shared by the institute with participants, as well as some of their previous guidebooks. And I just have to reiterate that I am so glad people are doing this good work. One of the things that struck me as I was doing my preparatory reading was that, while 65% of queer youth report being bullied in public schools, that number jumps to 75% in religiously affiliated schools. Whoa. Something is very not right about that. And I’m so glad organizations like the Religious Institute exist to start changing hearts and minds, so that hopefully, one day there will be a different connotation when it comes to religion, sexuality, and inclusion.
As we’ve introduced ourselves to one another, my best “in-a-nutshell” explanation of how “what I do” (in addition to who I am) relates to this work is that I’m a “bisexual Catholic blogger.” A few people have asked me if I’m clergy or going for my Masters of Divinity degree (the same question I was asked last week when I bought a big pile of theology-themed books at a used book sale), and I’ve said, “Nope, just a bisexual Catholic writer with a big bookshelf.” It has me thinking once more about credentials, and how one might show that she’s serious about her work without the external “proof.” But the truth remains that I’m here today because I wrote. It’s something to hold on to when, as all writers do, I find myself doubting from time to time whether writing really “matters.”
On another note, I’m still slagging through NaPoWriMo, about two days behind schedule. But it allowed me to give a couple poems to my husband for our one-year anniversary yesterday, so already it’s born great fruit.