Is cross dressing a sin?

Hi,

I was wondering if cross dressing is a sin? I went shopping with my grandma today, and I got a sweatshirt, but it’s for boys. I am a girl my name is Amy and I am 17. I got it because I really liked the design on it, there’s a cool dragon on the front, my grandma got it for me as a birthday present. Am I cross dressing when I wear this? Am I sinning for wearing it? I just though if it’s for boys then girls should be able to wear it too. A lady told me her granddaughter had some. I just though that I may be sinning by wearing it if it’s for boys. Can someone please tell me if I am sinning or not? And one time I was going on a ski trip or something for school and our parents needed to sign a permission form, and my sister signed my dad’s name. And also when I would get gift cards at Hastings it’s a video and book store, I would sell books or some of my DVDs there. And the Hastings card is my mom’s and sometimes when I would sign the reciete I would sign her name cause it was her card, and other times I would sign my name. Was I sinning mortally by doing this, by forging my mom’s signature? My middle name is the same as my mom’s name Michele. But she doesn’t like to be called that. I went to confession today, and I just got to thinking about these the sweatshirt and forging my mom’s signature, I wasn’t thinking about these at the time. Should I confess this at my next confession and if I don’t confess them will I be accepting the Eucharist in a state of mortal sin? Please someone help me I don’t know what to do.:frowning:

God Bless. Your good friend, Amy

I don’t think you are cross dressing in this case. You aren’t dressing as a man to deceive others into thinking you are a man or you are inappropriately aroused by the idea of wearing men’s clothing, you are simply wearing a piece of clothing that happens to be designed for a man. This is no different than men who are in track and field or cross country running who wear nylons in order to avoid having to shave their legs in order to cut down on wind resistance and get the best time.

Some items of clothing clothing in my are ambiguous in which gender it is made for, others aren’t. Again it comes down to the question, are you trying to deceive someone or are you inappropriately aroused by wearing the clothing? If your answers are no then I don’t think you have a thing to worry about.

As far as your other questions, if you signed your mother’s name without her permission then yes you were sinning, if not, there was no sin. As far as your sister’s sin, that’s up to her to confess, unless you actively (or through inaction) assisted her in her dishonesty.

Since you just went to confession and truly forgot to mention those sins, you are completely forgiven and can receive the Eucharist. You definitely should mention forging your mom’s signature at your next confession but not to worry about it for now.

And as far as the boy’s sweat shirt, don’t sweat it. (Pun intended) You are not cross dressing for the purposes that people who do cross dress have. You are a young lady who liked a sweatshirt and that’s about it. Now if you have other tendencies that you failed to mention then mention that to a priest. Otherwise put on that sweatshirt and go out and have a great day…teachccd

It seems to me that, at least as far as sweatshirts are concerned, that they are unisex, regardless of whether or not the tag says it’s for boys. I also agree with teachccd in that the OP’s expressed intention in wearing the sweatshirt was not meant to disparage her God-given gender and that there can be no mortal sin in wearing it.

That said, one must look beyond the facial issues and focus on what lies behind the current trends in unisex clothing. It seems that the distinction between the genders is either being downplayed or ignored altogether in a malformed notion of equality. This has led to the ubiquitous gender wars, same-sex marriage and, in the most extreme example, transsexualism. It is therefore important for all to recognize that in wearing such unisex clothing, the OP might be putting herself in the unfortunate position of being an occasion of scandal to others.

As Christians, we must carefully guard against giving even the hint that we endorse such flawed conceptions of gender lest we reinforce the errors of others. Our submission to God’s wisdom in choosing our gender for us ought to extend deep into our lives, including our choice of clothing. Though bucking the trends of our current culture may be difficult at times, especially for a seventeen-year-old girl, we must keep in mind Christ’s directive to be in the world but not of it.

A unisex garment is only one part of the whole outfit. What someone wears with that garment matters, too. It’s one thing for a female to wear a sweatshirt with cargo pants, hiking boots, and a baseball cap, and other thing altogether to wear it with “girly” jeans or a jeans-skirt, a cute pair of casual shoes, and maybe a ribbon or headband in her hair. As one who has bought many men’s sweaters over the years because I am very tall and the sleeves on the women’s sweaters often aren’t long enough, my general rule is that when I do wear something unisex, I have to balance it with something feminine. So, OP, wear your sweatshirt, have fun, and maybe “fem” it up a little bit with accessories unless you are just wearing it to rake leaves or something. :thumbsup:

I admit that I had not considered the sweatshirt as part of an ensemble, perhaps because the OP’s initial question encouraged thinking of the garment on its own. I agree that there are ways of making a unisex garment less offensive through the use of suitable accessories.

signing someone else’s name with their permission (in the case of the credit card, it sounds like you might have had such permission) is not a sin unless used to deceive.

The permission slip was, however, quite wrong. As a teacher, if I know a student has forged a signature, I’m supposed to refer them for immediate action. Even if your mom had told you to forge it, it’s a violation of most district’s policies, and thus falls under the “Breaking a just law is a sin” clause.

If it was an unintentional omission, it’s covered. Since it’s bothering you, you may want to go back to confession earlier, as you are still worried about it, and it can’t hurt to confess it again if it still troubles you.

But also remember: if it bothers you enough to confess it, it is serious enough to stop doing it.

Oh, and the Shirt? Total non-issue. Many women now wear mens’ shirts in a variety of circumstances and still yet maintain their obvious femininity. Likewise, modern ideas of masculine and feminine in clothing are somewhat flexible, and quite different from “traditional” clothing of the early 20th C, the 19th C and especially the 1st C. I wear a kilt from time to time, and a full length robe at other times (specifically an alb when I’ve lead prayer services as a catechist, and a cassock as an altar server), and neither affects my self-image of masculinity, and few other’s view of my masculinity.

Pax vobiscum!

Actually, this, the cargo pants, hiking boots and cap, is what I wear when I’m w/DH out hiking, or horseback riding, or…

So is this a problem?
What would make this outfit appropriate?
Or is it beyond redemption?

Not at all, but you’re not out in regular society when you are engaging in those activities. I wear the same sorts of things when I’m working in the yard. You will notice that in the last line of my post, I used the example of raking leaves as an activity in which the effort to glam it up a bit doesn’t really matter. And I’m not the one who called it offensive, BTW. Sometimes utility takes precedence over image. And sometimes the unisex look can’t be avoided, such as with some work uniforms.

What would make this outfit appropriate?

Don’t wear it to church! :wink: Otherwise it’s fine, and if you want to dress like that all the time, that’s your business and not mine. :shrug: I’m just saying that if a female wants to wear such things for regular day-to-day activities, she can do so in a manner which still proclaims her femininity. It doesn’t have to be all-or-nothing.

I disagree that there exist activities where the unisex look is unavoidable. There exist plenty of pictures from times past demonstrating that women were capable of wearing uniforms, performing manual labor or engaging in sporting activities all the while dressed in clothing that preserved their femininity. To suggest that covering all evidence of one’s gender under baggy folds of cloth in service to something one imagines to be practicality is to fall prey to the modernist lies now in vogue.

What people wear on their own time is a matter of their own conscience, but keep in mind that not everyone gets a choice about what to wear to work. It’s hardly kowtowing to modernism if you work in an area of a hospital where scrubs are provided and mandatory…and unisex. Any of the usual accessories to feminize a scrub suit would be forbidden in an operating room and in many critical-care units – and I know this from experience, having worked in both. That’s just one example. Some employers make their workers wear a prescribed polo shirt, vest, apron, or some such, but at least the employees usually can accessorize as long as they stay within the dress code and may have the choice of a skirt or slacks as long as they are the prescribed color. But femininity is about so much more than the clothing on one’s back. Even in the OR, mannerisms and demeanor speak far louder than those baggy blue outfits coming from Central Distribution.

I routinely wear sweatshirts with sweatpants, windpants, or similar. I never wear “girly” jeans (I personally dislike the look of them). I tie my hair up, but certainly never put ribbons in it. Of course, I am in my 40s.

Nothing wrong with a sweatshirt, jeans, sweatpants, etc. for school or shopping or out and about.

Eh, don’t worry about the sweatshirt. I wear my older brothers old sweatshirts all the time.

The unisex thing with dressing and it being occasionally unavoidable. Yeah, I’m in a highschool marching band, whenever we compete we practice in the football field for about four hours before hand, sometimes it gets down in the fourties and thirties. Earrings, nail polish and braclets aren’t allowed, girls wear the same uniforms as boys. I’m not going to try to look particularly feminine when I’m rehearsing in a football field, it’s just too cold.

There is nothing wrong with sweatshirts and jeans. I am 5’9" and I have no hips. I have to purchase jeans from the men’s department because if I did not, the seat would hang like a sack on me if I got the size to fit in the waist. I also need to purchase men’s shirts because my arms are long and I have a large neck. A 33" sleeve fits perfectly, and I need a 15 1/2" collar. Choker necklaces literally would “choke” me. I just make sure that I wear some nice earrings and other jewelry.

Similarly, I know a guy who wears women’s jeans because that is what fits his frame better. He gets some teasing if others occasionally find out about it, but otherwise it is just a matter of practicality and nothing else inappropriate.

If you just wear regular jeans (no sequins, no low-rise, etc.), it is impossible to tell the difference.

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