04/25/2013 03:31 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Does God Want This Man to Stop Being so Effeminate?

Hi John,

Just read your blog posts on homosexuality -- very insightful. I am a homosexual man myself. However, I am extremely effeminate (not to the point of transgenderism), and I was wondering: What are your thoughts on males who behave like females (wearing make-up, into fashion, etc.) Sometimes, I feel that God does not like the way I am. So would you say I should change even though this comes naturally for me? Thanks so much! I greatly would appreciate your response and time taken to write it. God bless.

The only reason I'd suggest changing is if not changing is bringing you too much pain, trouble or grief. If you're getting beaten up every day for wearing make-up, I'd advise you to quit wearing make-up. I'm no conformist; but I'm also pretty down with surviving. I want you to be OK. If being OK means you have to tweak a little of what you do here and there, then ... then that's life. We all do that. What's natural for me, for instance, is to be naked while I clean my house. But I stopped doing that when a traumatic accident caused me to learn that cleaning the house naked can lead to one of the weirdest ways ever to ruin a perfectly good vacuum cleaner.

But this isn't about me. It's about you, thank God.

The above caveat being said: No, I don't think you should change. Screw changing. Be the way you are. It's good for us to have men who act like women, and women who act like men. Because those are the kind of people who are leading the way for all of us to be exactly who we really are. People like you are the heroes of our culture.

I'm a six-foot-two, 215-pound man who's about one nanometer of testosterone away from being a werewolf. If I were any straighter I could hire myself out as a T-square. Well, I love Broadway musicals. I'm completely interested in women's fashions. And not just because of the women who wear them; I'm enamored with the whole idea of fashion as art. When talking I move my hands around so much it's like they're secretly trying to message for help.

I hate the thought of acting like the term "March Madness" triggers in me any thought at all beyond "Everyone's horny in the spring." Though I'm awesome at all sports, the one I chose to focus on was tennis, which nine out of 10 sports enthusiasts agree ranks on the Gay-o-Meter just below synchronized swimming. And in high school I quit the tennis team so I could act in the school plays. (My athlete friends to me: "Don't you think acting is a little gay?" Me to them: "Well, let's see. I spend my time surrounded by straight alpha girls who know they're pretty enough to be actresses. You spend your time sweating, grunting and showering with other guys. But I'm gay.")

I'm a child of the '50s. My father's generation of men was stuck doing nothing but working like mad men and as much as possible distancing themselves from their emotions. While in high school my wife, along with all of her classmates, was given an aptitude test. The boys' test was printed on blue paper; the girls' was on pink. The only jobs for which the test showed young women suitable were nurse, secretary and teacher. That's it. Those were their three choices.

When I was 17 years old, a group of gay actors and dancers, slightly older than I and infinitely more sophisticated, took me under their wing. At the time I had zero concept of the whole idea of homosexuality; to me, everyone was ... well, straight like me. The people in the group who took my lost and sorry ass in were seriously effeminate men. They giggled; they tittered; they swooned; they faux-fainted; they screamed when to me a simple gasp would have done the trick; while talking they gesticulated so wildly that I learned to step back when they started telling a story. And they did all this in public. They especially did it in public. They liked being the center of attention. They wanted other people to very much register their presence.

They weren't in the least afraid of being who they were.

Those guys saved me. By so boldly and uncompromisingly being themselves, they showed me how I, too, could be myself. They proved to me that I didn't have to partition myself into parts, some of which I could show publicly, some of which I couldn't. Because of them I got to bring to the table all of myself, all of the time.

I am every day grateful to those guys (and to their/our female friends who loved them). I don't know what my life would have become without their modeling for me what whole people look like. They dared to be different, and in so doing empowered me to do the same.

So, no. Unless you must for your own safety, don't change. I don't know a lot about a lot, but I guarantee you that God is more than OK with you being the entirety of the person you are -- which is to say the entirety of the person God created you to be. You're a guy who's inclined to behave in ways most people associate with women. Lots of men are like that. Lots of women like to behave in ways most people consider masculine.

It's all good. It's more than good; it's important. Because all of us, as a race, are right now in the process of learning the one thing that, come hell or high water, we all will learn, which is that ultimately no behavior, thought process, or natural inclination is exclusively male or female. We all contain a great deal of both. And it's thanks to people like you -- people who were essentially born to be trailblazers -- that we're all becoming more and more comfortable embracing that divine truth.

Here is the perfect picture of who, on macro and micro level, all of us really are:


Blessings to you, friend.