Today, with more freedom and acceptance from our world, more people are coming out as genders different from their biological classification and using different pronouns. I identify with she/her pronouns and I am a cis-gendered female. After my best friend came out as non-binary, I began to understand with greater clarity what gender is and what sex is. I found out that I did not fully grasp the meaning of the common words I have been using, like sex and gender.
I had to explain this many times to my family members who did not understand. This is for those who are trying to understand, but embarrassed to ask or admit they are confused. I have been there. In this world there are 3 sexes: male, female, and intersex. Male and female are common, while intersex means you were born with both chromosomes. Sex is what you were born as. This can not change.
However, gender is your identity. You decide your gender. You hold the power to choose what you are comfortable with, identify with, and feel in your heart. There are over 64 genders. Female and male are both sexes and genders. If you are cis-gendered, your sex and gender match.
The term transgender means your sex and your gender don’t match. There are transgender people who have surgery to feel more comfortable, and there are many who don’t. It is up to each individual what they change, keep, tell people, and their privacy should be respected.
Pro-nouns are a way to show people you respect them and a way to make transgender people more comfortable. Well-known pronouns include she, her, he, and his. However, they/them is now more commonly being used. People who are non-binary or don’t identify as female or male will often use they/them. Non-binary is a gender, which means someone knows that they are not their sex, but they do not feel like they fall into one category.
There are many more genders and pronouns that exist. When someone says, “There are only two genders,” that is a lie. Around social media, people include their pronouns in their bios. This is important, even for cis-gendered people, because it should be normalized. It makes it easier to make people feel comfortable and not risk misgendering someone.
The best way to ensure you properly understand gender, transgender, sex, and pronouns, do research on your free time to get educated. Allow everyone the inclusion, safety, and respect they deserve.