Sure. I fit some of the stereotypes of the Christian feminist. Hell, the fact that we’re even cohesive enough to be stereotyped is cause for cartwheels. I cringe at gendered language for God in liturgy. I roll my eyes at women’s afternoon tea clubs scheduled at 1pm on a Thursday and men’s financial seminars held at 7am on a Sunday. I even insist on calling my husband “my partner” amongst new crowds just to see if I get a rise.
But it can feel sticky differentiating myself from a group that’s hardly had time to form in the public eye. I feel devious in mentioning my discomforts, as if we Christian feminists were a rare breed that needed coddling.
Would it be bad if I said I wasn’t exactly into the expressive, emotional, female-centric small groups? That I actually preferred my fellowship time to entail a bottle of wine over dinner with mixed-gender company? Would you judge me if I said I was into make-up, fashion, and owning a television? That I would rather read Glamour than Ms. and watch Project Runway than PBS? Or would I invite criticism if I said I was pro-life and pro-gay but had really never come down theologically on either issue? I’m embarrassed already.
And yet, Christian feminists are the ones who profess God’s unbounded love to everyone in God’s “kin-dom” (yes, more evidence of my zeal for de-gendered words). We should be leading the way of stereotype busting and conformity debunking. My hesitancy to share my confessions stems more from cultural expectations than it does from any self-professed Christian feminist I’ve encountered.
Although my design aesthetic is another point of distinction from Christian feminist groups (the drab newsletters can feel soul crushing), they are my people. In all their diversity. And in all my inadequacy. Stereotypes be damned, but I am not.