The Pronoun Thing

Back in my post about the inspiring blog award I received I mentioned that, while I’m genderqueer, I’m still using female pronouns for now, because I was female-assigned-at-birth and it’s what I’ve grown up with.

That’s changed. Something about my birthday created a change in me. (My birthday and, probably, my ritual to Persephone and Hades and subsequent disowning of my father.) I realized — I’m tired of being default female. I want to use different pronouns.

Some of you may have already noticed the change on the site — the header says “Where Morag Spinner weaves zir web” and my bio below the posts uses zie/zir in place of she/her, and they’ve said that for about a week now.

I’m not expecting miracles from anyone. I’m still femme, so people do tend to use she/her when referring to me. That’s okay. It’s not going to trigger me or make me angry, and I’m not going to leap on you for misgendering me. We’re all human, and it can be really hard to remember the pronoun change when someone comes out as trans* or genderqueer to you, especially when you’ve known them for a long time and pronouns have become an ingrained part of how you think about the person. I know it’s hard for me.

But it’s the start of my twenty-seventh year on this planet. I’ve only known for a few years that being genderqueer was even an option for me, because it’s not talked about or presented as a gender option to/with kids or teenagers. I’ve spent twenty-six years being called a girl, and a woman, and a she and a her. I’m done with accepting that, because I’m not any of those things. I’m not a boy or a man or a he or a him either.

I’m a ladydude, and a broface, and a sither (Danny and I came up with this word to describe a gender-neutral sibling relationship), and a grrlboi (or just a grrl). I’m a bunch of other things that I’m still exploring and discovering and coming up with awesome names for.

To that end, because gender seems to be a pretty fluid spectrum to me and never really stays in one area or any other, I’ve decided that gender-neutral pronouns are the best option for me.

I went with zie and zir because they are similar enough to she/her to still fit with my femme-y-ness, and similar enough in pronunciation that it won’t be a total tongue-twister to me or anyone else. The pronunciation is just like she and her, except with a “z” sound at the beginning and no “h”. Zee and zur. (I don’t know the phonetic alphabet and think it sucks for phonemes anyway, so you’ll just have to make do with the italicized “This is how it should sound” approximation.)

I’m also opening up this post to questions. If you have questions about my gender ID and my pronoun choice, post them in the comments below and I’ll do my best to answer them. Sometimes gender-stuff is really hard for me to explain, so if I can’t give you a satisfactory answer, it’s probably because I can’t give myself one. A lot of times, I just lack the words.

5 Comments


  1. I am one of those people who is awful with remembering alternate pronouns- is ‘they’ and ‘their’ acceptable?

    Reply

    1. I’ve had to actually think on this for a few days. :) I’ve come the conclusion that I’m more comfortable with she/her if you can’t remember zie/zir. While I accept that they/their is grammatically correct for third person singular, and I respect others’ choices to use it, it just feels wrong to me, personally.

      Thanks for asking. :)

      Reply

      1. Duly noted! I will do my best to remember zie/zir. :)

        Reply

  2. Morag, I admire your courage in claiming and exploring your gender queer-ness! Especially for the reasons you pointed out – its not talked about, and not accepted by so many. You are a way-maker, and I honor that.

    Reply

    1. Thank you, Mary! I really loved reading your comment. It made my day. :)

      Reply

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