Introduction to Pronouns
You may look below and say “OMG! There are so many pronouns! How am I supposed to memorize them all? :0” Don’t worry, my friend. Even people who are used to using they and a few other of these pronouns aren’t familiar with them all. Nobody expects you to know every single pronoun in existence. However, what I would recommend is that you familiarize yourself with some of the popular ones below and especially the singular form of they. Also, if you meet someone who you are coming into contact more than once, then it would be best to learn how to use that pronouns, even if it is not one of the ones below or a popular one.
Another problem that many of us face when encountering a new pronoun is how to implement it. We were indoctrinated since birth into a binary gender system of thinking. It is very difficult to deconstruct and won’t happen just because you are aware of it. The process of deconstructing your instinct to assume someone’s gender takes years to do. In the meantime, you can take baby steps.
- Acknowledge that you don’t know someone’s gender until they tell you explicitly.
- If someone hasn’t told you their gender explicitly, use they to refer to them until you ask them. (If you use this for not only strangers on the streets but for celebrities, characters in TV shows and such then it will make it easier to change pronouns even if you are not familiar with the grammar of it.)
- When you meet a person, state your name/pronouns then ask them what their pronouns are.
It doesn’t matter whether your pronouns are he, she, they, spivak or anything else. This shows that you are aware that there are more than 2 genders and also shows you as an ally to the non-binary/genderqueer/trans community.
4. Even if a person says that their pronouns are he or she, they aren’t automatically a man or a woman. Remember, some trans/non-binary/genderqueer people may not be comfortable telling you their pronouns, some he and she for convenience and others identify outside the binary but still like he or she pronouns.
He called. I called him. His eyes sparkled. That is his. He likes himself.
She called. I called her. Her eyes sparkled. That is hers. She likes herself.
It called. I called it. Its eyes sparkled. That is its. It likes itself.
They called. I called them. Their eyes sparkled. That is theirs. They like themselves.
Ne called. I called nem. Nir eyes sparkled. That is nirs. Ne likes nemself.
Ze called. I called hir. Hir eyes sparkled. That is hirs. Ze likes hirself.
Ze called. I called zir. Zir eyes sparkled. That is zirs. Ze likes zirself.
Xe called. I called xem. Xyr eyes sparkled. That is xyrs. Xe likes xemself.
Ey called. I called em. Eir eyes sparkled. That is eirs. Ey likes emself.
Ve called. I called ver. Vis eyes sparkled. That is vis. Ve likes verself.
Kit called. I called kit. Kits eyes sparkled. That is kits. Kit likes kitself.
(This is only a basic list of all the gender neutral pronouns. If you have any suggestions of other pronouns or websites with pronouns, feel free to recommend them in the comment’s section or email us directly.)
- Pronouns I Questions and Queeries
- Pronoun Problems
- Why Pronouns Matter for Trans People
- QAC 49 – Singular ‘They’ I Gender Neutral Pronouns I This Has Been A PSA