Sometimes I barely even notice
I’ve been telling people about my preferred pronouns a lot in the last few weeks. Sometimes, when people actually use them, I barely even notice.
A house mate used they to refer to me while talking to another housmate and it almost didn’t register that it was me. It was me!
A counselor used they to refer to me while chatting on the phone to the scheduling person, and it almost didn’t click.
But I think the fact that I don’t notice is a good sign. Because the opposite effect happens when I’m misgendered. Whenever someone uses she or her pronouns to refer to me, I definitely notice. There’s a pulse in my chest and then I get panicky and anxious, because I have to weigh whether I want to come out to them in that moment or not. Usually I don’t. Especially if I don’t know them very well.
Today, for the first time I corrected someone who used her pronouns while talking about me. It was a person who I felt comfortable with enough to actually correct, probably because he already knew my pronouns, and he was also queer.
Now I just need to work up to correcting other people who don’t know yet. We’ll get there eventually.