I am honored to be speaking this Saturday afternoon at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley. Rev. Chris Holton Jablonski and I will be leading a facilitated discussion about supporting our kids in being their authentic selves, and working to build safe schools and communities. You are all invited.
I love the Unitarians. If I weren’t a reform Jew who is already Unitarian-ish anyway, I would become Unitarian. Unitarians believe in compassion and social justice, in the worth and dignity of each individual, in acceptance of other people even if they are different from who we are or who we expect them to be. They value learning from, and deepening our relationships with, people and situations who challenge us to think or act differently than we usually do. And they believe in actively making the world a better place for not just ourselves, but everyone. See what I mean? Don’t you want to be a Unitarian too?
Here’s the workshop description:
When Sarah’s son asked at age four if he could wear a dress to school, she and her husband weren’t sure what to do, fearing he would be teased by his classmates. Now, at age eight, Sam continues to defy gender norms, and faces new social challenges. How is it possible to let a child be who they are, but also protect them from society’s judgment?
Parents of gender-nonconforming children face particular challenges as they grapple with their own beliefs and biases as well as those of our culture, and as they see their children become victims of bullying at school and in our communities. But these challenges raise questions for all parents: how can we support our children to be their authentic selves? How can we work together to ensure that our schools, communities, and places of worship are safe places for our families? How can we turn our challenges and questions into means to broaden our sense of our deepest values?
Our children—whether gender-nonconforming or gender-normative, special-needs or typically-developing—push us to expand our thinking. What is acceptable? What does it really mean to accept our children as they are, not as how we expect them to be? How can we be ambassadors in the world for our children?
Sarah will share her own story as well as insights gleaned from parents across the country to illuminate the particular challenges faced by gender-nonconforming children and how these challenges relate to universal issues for all children and parents.
Please join me!
Saturday, March 12 at 5pm
Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley
1 Lawson Road
Kensington, CA 94707