A few years back, I was eavesdropping on a couple of my Vashon Island co-commuters when I heard the topic of pronouns come up. I’ll admit, I was confused.
“They want to be referred to as ‘they’ instead of ‘she’ from now on,” one of them said.
What? What were they talking about? At the time, I didn’t quite get it.
That was a few years ago, and while I hadn’t actually given the subject much thought back then, I have now come to understand why someone would want to be referred to as “they” or “them” instead of “he” or “she.”
For me, it’s about acknowledging someone’s preferences and respecting them as individuals.
I always want to be respectful, inclusive and above all, non-judgmental, even if it’s about a subject that might not seem as important to me. Maybe that’s why I hadn’t given it much thought—it’s a no-brainer really to simply respect people’s wishes.
I received an email from one of our largest clients the other day that included the writer’s pronoun preference in their signature line. It got me thinking about LexBlog and the kind of organization we are and strive to be.
The words progressive, diverse and inclusive come to mind. We focus so many of our efforts on building community throughout the legal profession and our own organization. One place I think we can build on those values is by showing that we care about, acknowledge and respect people’s gender identity preferences.
I am going to add my pronoun preferences to my email signature, and I encourage you all to include yours in your email signature as well.