Please Welcome Kristin Alvarez!
"I'M A TEACHER, WRITER, AND MOTHER WHO IS REMARRIED AND RAISING MY CHILDREN (BOTH BY TWO DIFFERENT DADS) IN A BLENDED FAMILY WHERE MY EX, CURRENT HUSBAND, AND I ALL SHARE A MOTHER-DAUGHTER HOME."
Read more from her at
What is your religious background? (baptist, mormon, catholic, christ church etc.)
"I was raised in a nondenominational Evangelical Christian church and also attended a private Christian school (more Baptist aligned) from K-12th grade."
How long have you been deconstructing?
"I’ve been deconstructing for the past year and a half. "
What was it that led you to start questioning things for yourself?
"It wasn’t necessarily one event that caused me to begin to question. Rather, I was beginning to feel less and less aligned with the teachings of my youth as I grew more confident in myself. I could not reconcile the fear, judgment, and shame that had been preached to me with that of our Source of love."
What was your childhood like?
"It was very loving, but also very protected from the outside world. Television, movies, and music were censored; I wasn’t allowed to have a Cabbage Patch Doll because my parents had heard in church that they were named after Egyptian gods or something. I wasn’t allowed to watch “My Little Pony” or “The Smurfs” because there was magic/perhaps occult elements in those shows, so I grew up feeling like things/knowledge/experiences were definitely being kept from me. I was also the first born and the only girl, so I had this motherly role in helping to care for my younger siblings. I was definitely expected to behave and have good grades, and so I did those things. I tried to be the “good Christian girl.” "
What is a defining moment for you in the church that felt very wrong but you could not do anything about it at the time?
"It was back in 2015/2016, and I was attending a church with my young son. We had visited a few times before, and it felt mostly welcoming and warm. On this particular Sunday,I signed him into Sunday school, and then went to the church service. Within a few minutes of the start of the sermon, the head pastor brought up same sex marriage and decried the sins of homosexuality and same sex marriage from the pulpit. In that moment, I felt enraged and heartbroken. I knew that I was bisexual, and how it felt for me to hear the pastor. I was thinking about the 12 or 13 year olds who might have been in those pews, and who were questioning their gender and/or sexuality. That pastor’s words were so immensely damaging, especially when delivered from a stage, from a pulpit. It was after that service that I decided I was done with attending church. "
What is something you would tell your younger self if you could go back and hug them and talk to them for a moment?
"You are whole and holy. You do not have to earn anything, least of all, love. "
What are you proudest of yourself for right now?
"I am proud of myself for coming out as bisexual, and for now being able to have conversations around that fact with my parents. It was so hard and uncomfortable to own that truth, but I am proud of myself for staying uncomfortable. "
How has your view of yourself changed since leaving?
"I love myself so much more! Everything doesn’t feel so dire, and ironically, I feel more grace towards myself and others than before. I also now see myself as an immensely powerful being. Before, I viewed myself as very lowly, as desperately in need of God, and now, I feel kind of horrified by my previous mindset. I can see how brainwashed I was from a lifetime of the lingo. "
What was the hardest part of your christian identity to let go of? What have you moved into instead?
"I guess the idea of being a “good girl.” I looked really good on paper, but it was destroying me to keep up the facade. The good girl I identified with was kind, generous, loving, composed, a “spirit-filled believer”, good with children. I have now moved into the more messy, complex and full human experience which isn’t so neat and pure and demure. "
What do you feel incredibly thankful for now that you have left?
My body and my sexuality. For so long, I felt like I had to hide my curves, hide my desires. Purity culture was so incredibly damaging to my sense of self worth and my ability to become an actualized sexual adult. I’m happily reconnecting with my sexuality and am so thankful for the freedom to wear what feels good for me.
What is some advice you would give to someone deconstructing now?
"I honestly don’t feel very equipped to give advice as I am currently deconstructing and feel full of questions. But, I would share that you are not alone in your thoughts and feelings, and truthfully, it feels like the beginning of the real spiritual journey. "
Being raised in dogmatic religion has us see things as black and white, right and wrong. There is often no room for difference. How do you hold space for people different from you now? What has been the most challenging part of shifting that narrative?
"I think that I am a lot less instinctually judgmental, and am open to the reality of a hundred different realities. There are no more thoughts or questions about someone going to hell when they die, and that in and of itself, has changed the way I view human relationships. I was taught how to Evangelize from such a young age that I think it warped the way I saw life in general. Life now feels more welcoming, more expansive. Humans seem so beautiful and complex, and I look forward to connecting with others and learning from them. I think it basically boils down to thinking I knew it all to now understanding how much I still have to learn. I guess the most challenging part of shifting that narrative has been reminding myself of how much is possible when I start to get into black and white thinking. "
What have you found to be the most helpful tool for deconstructing that you can share with my readers?
"IG accounts have been immensely helpful, @thekevingarcia and @madisonmorrigan, in particular. One of the most profound experiences I’ve ever had was the past life regression I did with a psychic this past year. I was raised to believe that psychics and mediums etc. were absolutely off limits, so it felt empowering to make that choice for myself. "
Thank you so much to Kristin A. for sharing your story here.
Thank you for reading! Please show Kristin some love in the comments!
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