Mental Blocks Against Neutral Pronouns?

For reasons unfathomable to me, I have been encountering a surprising number of people who seem to have mental blocks against using my pronouns (they/them/their).  At last count I have four people in my immediate family, girlfriend included, and a few friends who either don’t know my pronouns or mess up way too often for it to be a coincidence.  I don’t hold any ill will towards these people; it’s clear that they still love me the same after I changed my pronouns.

But I can’t quite determine if I should be feeling disrespected or not.  I could imagine a situation where it would absolutely be within my right to be upset and claim disrespect was at play, such as if someone deliberately called me by the wrong pronouns and were total jerks about it.  But again, this is not the case.  They’re never rude about it, they rarely — if ever — gripe or complain about my pronouns, and they completely respect me and the decisions I’ve made.

However, I still can’t help but wonder where that line between being disrespectful and being too set in their ways to change lies…or perhaps it doesn’t exist?  In any event, I’m not the sort of person to get up in arms about my feelings and how I should be treated.  This essentially rules out me going up to everyone who refuses to use neutral pronouns and screaming, “THESE ARE MY PRONOUNS AND YOU WILL USE THEM!!”  I prefer to take a more quiet and gentle approach of reminding people a handful of times, waiting to see how they progress over time, and either continue my needling or give it up as a lost cause.

What are your experiences with refusals by others to use your pronouns?  Have you come up with any quick and easy ways to have your pronouns used and honored?  Please feel free to share in the comments below!

5 Things Cis People Can Actually Do For Trans People (Now That You Care About Us)


A good, concise post that sums up my feelings on what the LGBTQIA+ community can start working on now that marriage equality has been legalized. Mind you, this of course isn’t everything, but checking our attitudes towards and assumptions about trans people would be a pretty good place to start.

Originally posted on The (Trans)cendental Tourist:

It’s been a weird year for trans people.

Allow me to be more specific: It’s been a heated, daring, tumultuous, graphic, specularizing, aggressive, pointed,contentious, highlyfatal, and really, really complicated year for trans people.

Here are a few examples: Kristina Gomez Reinwald, Ty Underwood, Lamia Beard, and many othertranswomen of color have been brutally murdered at the hands of lovers, family members, and strangers.Meanwhile,Laverne Cox and Janet Mock have come to fame and exhibited incrediblefeats of grace, articulation, and poignancy under the gaze ofan eager media. Blake Brockington, Leelah Alcorn, Taylor Alesana, and many other transgender youth have committed suicide afterenduring endless bullying and systematic brutality. Meanwhile, Jazz Jennings became the new face of Clean & Clear and published a children’s picture book about her life, and teen trans couple Arin Andrews and KatieHill (best known for “Can You Even Believe They’re Trans?!” types of headlines) wrote and published individual books…

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As I’ve mentioned a few times before, I do not have transition regret. I don’t regret top surgery, I don’t regret changing my name and pronouns, and the only thing I regret about hormones are things I can’t change; namely body hair and the dosage I started with. So overall my transition has gone exceedingly well.

But I have these moments that, for lack of a better word, I will call flashbacks. It’s not in the traditional sense of the word, like whenever I hear car tires screech and flash back to a fatal accident I witnessed on the Autobahn. That’s the clinical use of the word. But these moments, these flashbacks, are more like gender flashbacks.

You see, the longer it’s been since I started transitioning the more I’ve noticed that I sometimes forget the progress I’ve made. A humorous example occurred two weeks ago when the intense heat in my apartment led me to take off my shirt. Moments later I saw my girlfriend prance by shirtless, as she is wont to do, and I was suddenly struck by a mixture of panic and extreme embarrasment. Suddenly I was living out my nightmares of being in public missing my clothes; I was shirtless, my boobs were hanging out there for all to see! And after a few more seconds passed I remembered that, no, I did not have boobs anymore, that being shirtless was totally okay now. Thank gods for top surgery!

Usually my gender flashbacks are not so obvious, however. Most of the time it’s me forgetting how low my voice is now, or more frustratingly looking at my name and thinking, “Brannen? Who’s that?” and then feeling a weird nostagia for my former name. I can’t decide if these experiences are normal or not, but I’m willing to bet they are and that, more likely than not, people just don’t talk about this happening. Which is kind of sad, if you think about it. After all, this is just another part of me living my life as a fabulous gender-neutral trans person, and if little old me has these moments, I’m sure others must as well. I just wish we would talk about them more.

The End of an Era

After much thought, angst, and deliberation I decided to discontinue making vlogs for my YouTube channel.  The long and short of it is that I want to focus on improving myself, and I’m in a space now where I need to take a few steps backwards to reconnect with how I used to be.  This has nothing to do with gender or my transition, nor my asexuality, nothing like that; rather it is related to my general demeanor and interpersonal skills.  I want to listen more and speak less, and YouTube definitely does not allow for that.

But never fear!  Since I prefer writing anyways and am looking to focus on all of my writing endeavors (read: my novels), this blog will continue on.  YouTube was always kind of a pipe dream for me in that I never expected to have a huge amount of viewers, comments, etc.  The fact that one of my videos is currently at 13,000+ views astounds me.  I’m incredibly grateful for anyone who’s been a part of this vlogging experiment of mine.

So here’s my last video, more or less.  I mention in the video that I have plans to audition for a non-binary collab channel, since I’ve been looking for such a channel for ages.  Should I get a spot on the channel I will definitely post my videos here.

Is It Wrong To Reject Someone’s Preferred Gender Pronouns?

Originally posted on Today I Am A Man:

With Caitlyn Jenner’s recent transition all over the news, a lot of people are thinking and talking about trans issues for the first time. The overall response seems positive to me–many people are acknowledging Caitlyn Jenner’s courage and honesty. At the same time, others are outraged and wish to express their hostility to trans people by refusing to use Caitlyn’s name and gender pronouns.

I had all this on my mind when I saw the following query pop up in the search terms (edited to correct spelling):

is it oppressive not to use someone’s preferred gender pronoun?

Well, it depends on what you mean by “not to use.” I would say it is rude, mean and very disrespectful to refuse to use someone’s gender pronouns. But it is totally understandable to accidentally screw up someone’s pronouns.

So, genuine mistakes are one matter. Friends and family members deserve patience when someone

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Genderweird Search Terms (and Hermit Crabs)

Look, it even has a cute moustache! You’re welcome, BTW.

And now for a grand viewing of the top search terms used to access this blog…since forever!  Plus I will be addressing a few important ones I came across in my browsing.

Genderweird came in at 38 times used.  This was eclipsed only by search terms involving dysthymia, which in their myriad forms totaled at 62.  This does not take into account the 1000+ terms that were encrypted by Google or whoever else.  Six people (or perhaps one person on six different occasions) seemed to think that I had experienced top surgery regret, and I very likely disappointed them in that regard.  For some horrid reason my blog was accessed four times by stringing together the term demisexual and forms of sexual activity involving the buttocks…which, honestly, makes no sense when this blog in question is home to a minorly sex-repulsed asexual.  And oddly enough, 13 people seemed to think I’d give excellent relationship advice about their girlfriends.  My personal favorite: How to draw a hermit crab step by step had a grand total of three times used.  I shall provide instructions in case they’re still looking.

There were two search terms — sentences, really — that I thought would be important to address here.

“I’m bio female gender neutral – can I get testosteronr”

Now, since the “r” is directly next to the “e” on a standard keyboard, I will assume you’re asking about testosterone and go from there.  I too was born female and identify as gender neutral, and yes you can absolutely get testosterone.  Just be sure to find a therapist and/or general practitioner who will write the appropriate letter, should you try and get hormones covered under insurance.  Accessing hormone therapy still falls under the WPATH Standards of Care, and as such you should probably follow the procedures enumerated there.

“My girlfriend has dysthymia depression is she testing me”

Does she have a scantron sheet or red pen in her hand?  If not, then no.  Dysthymia is just as real a diagnosis as your ignorance seems to be.