The words are there. The Oxford English dictionary added Agender, Bi-gender, Cisgender, Cissexism, FTM, Gender Dysphoria, Gender Identity, Gender-fluid, Genderqueer, Misgender, MTF, Mx, Nonbinary,Transman, Transperson, Transphobia, and Transwoman to their online dictionary.
But my friends and I don’t talk about it. I came out to two of my friends who I’ve known, loved (platonically of course) and appreciated for seven years. Seven years is supposed to be a magic number. People say if you’re friends for seven years, you’ll be friends forever.
So, why does my friend say that when people use “they/them” as a singular pronoun it makes him uncomfortable and doesn’t “sound right” to him? Why when he’s trying to write a story with an aromantic character and they come off as heartless do I have to correct him and say we’re not like that? Why do my friends and family have to tell me my gender and sexuality isn’t real. I may not feel romance, but I can feel loyalty that would make Samwise Gamgee come off as flaky. Because of that I’m at an impasse.
I can’t change my friends’ minds by just talking to them. If I try to correct them they get defensive and will try that much harder to prove me wrong. The platitude “those who mind don’t matter and those who matter won’t mind” is adorable and I guiltily confess to pining it to my pinterest board three times, but I can’t just dump all my friends and start over. I feel bound by loyalty, bound by the duty of friendship to understand them as human beings and love them despite their faults. I will be a true friend even when they aren’t.
So, we just don’t talk about it. I don’t wave my pride flags in their faces and demand they love me. Instead I talk about how comfortable my unisex clothes make me feel. I talk about how purple and green are my favorite colors. I talk about what a pain in the ass makeup is and that no matter how many pinterest tutorials I find it never makes any sense. I talk about how I don’t like going to loud dance clubs, but will get up and do a group dance at the Folk Life festival. I talk about how I love writing more than anything. I talk about my favorite characters. I talk about what books I’m reading (with asexual and trans characters, of course, but I leave that part out). I talk about my coworkers who are so confused because I’m so weird. I talk about everything me, but “it”.
I let “it” speak for itself.