What is Side B?

“Side B” refers to the belief among gay Christians that, regardless of our sexual orientation, God’s design for marriage, as revealed in scripture, includes one man and one woman for life. As an extension of that, side b gay Christians believe that sex is a gift from God that is meant to be enjoyed only in the confines of a one man/one woman marriage. Conversely, those who believe that God blesses monogamous same-sex relationships would fall into the “Side A” camp.

“But let me just stop you right there,” you say. “What’s all this business of calling yourself a ‘gay’ Christian?” To answer that, I’ll direct you to a couple of thoughtful, well-written articles here and here. 

Many, if not most, self-described Side B gay Christians are pursuing celibacy, as they see this as the best way for them to honor the Bible’s teaching on sexuality and marriage. But this is not the case for all of us. For instance, I have a wife and a daughter. I am in what is sometimes called a “mixed orientation marriage.”

“Wait a minute, a mixed what?”

“OK, but why all the labels?” you object. Well, it’s simple really. I know that being anti-label is a thing nowadays, and I get it to some extent; labels can be limiting. But they can also be useful. Labels are just part of language, and they can help make communication more efficient. If one is careful to define terms upfront, and if others take the time to try and understand what is meant by those terms, the conversation can be better off for their use. So if I occasionally call myself a “Side B gay Christian in a mixed orientation marriage” it’s because I don’t really want to have to write “a Christian who experiences same sex attraction but believes that marriage should be a covenant between one man and one woman for life and sex is to be enjoyed only within said covenant, and I’m also married to a woman” every single time. Can we agree that labels are sometimes the best way to go?

I hope this page has been informative and that it can serve to lay some groundwork so that you can get the most out of the articles on the site that assume a lot of the things I’ve spelled out here. If further clarification is needed, I’m always open to comments and feedback.

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