I’ve debated about writing this article because sadly it is still a controversial issue. A controversial issue that is one of many issues that is dividing this country apart. An issue that has been near and dear to me for decades yet never spoke up about it till I worked at a local mental health agency.
The topic I have chosen to write about is about respecting people’s pronouns and gender identity. This topic is quite important to me as I have never really identified as my perceived gender; female. I’ve considered myself to be genderqueer or non-binary or genderfluid and go by the pronouns they/them for quite some time yet never really corrected people for a multitude of reasons until recently.
It wasn’t until I got my first position at a local mental health agency when I realized the importance of respecting people’s pronouns and gender identity including my own. When I started working with clients who have felt disrespected by folks who didn’t respect their gender identity and/or the pronouns the individual goes by, I didn’t realize the impact it had on me when I advocated on their be behalf. It was in my job descriptions as a Consumer Aide and Peer Specialist to be an advocate for the clients I served.
Advocating for the clients I served regarding their pronouns and gender identity especially among a handful of my colleagues was not the easiest of things to do. It wasn’t easy to do at first because, I never really advocated for myself regarding my gender identity or preferred pronouns since the people closest to me already knew and respected this about me. So, when it became loud and clear to me in the first month of working in the mental health field that if it matters to the individuals I served, then it needs to matter to me as an individual who doesn’t go by societies gender norms. I’m not saying it didn’t matter to me before because it did however the Universe had used the clients I served on how important it is for me and my recovery as well as, the clients I use to serve.
As I came to terms with advocating for my clients and myself at work in the mental health field, I quickly realized that my own mental health treatment team didn’t know my preferred pronouns or that I identify as a genderfluid, non-binary, genderqueer individual. So, I decided if I am able to advocate for myself and my clients at work then I can advocate for myself with my treatment team. When I mentioned my gender identity and preferred pronouns, I found myself being on the receiving end of the advocacy I once did for my clients.
Why is it so important to respect people’s gender identity and preferred pronouns? Statistics show that 82% of transgender and non-conforming individuals don’t feel safe at work and/or school. The same stats show that 67% have been bullied online while 64% have had property destroyed. The effecting of being bullied especially regard gender identity are: six times more likely to be depressed; eight times more likely to attempt to die by suicide; and three times more likely to have a substance use disorder (SUD). To answer the question of why is it important to respect a person’s gender identity and pronouns is that it can literally safe someone’s life and is common courtesy to do so. It is also important that we respect each other as fellow human beings and that we value each other as individuals even if we don’t always get along.
Thank you for reading my lengthy article on respecting peoples pronouns and gender identity. The one thing I want you all to get out of this article is that gender identity plays a major role on who we are as individual’s as well as our mental health.
Good Morning, World!!! I have decided to do a post on stereotypes because lets face it; everyone has them. Stereotypes differ from person to person and one’s culture could play major role in how we stereotype others.
I’ve been thinking a great deal about this for a multitude of reasons. One of the reasons is I’ve seen multiple negative post about millennials on Facebook. Yes, I have seen some funny post posted by millennials yet the negative post I’ve seen have been posted by folks in my generation. I know that many folks in the generation before mine had their stereotypes of Generation Xers as being the “lazy generation.” I don’t know about being lazy but I do know this partly why folks in different generations to not respect those who of a different age.
Another stereotypes are race and ethnicity. For example some folks thinks all Asians are geniuses because they do well in school and in the business and technology aspects in life. While another stereotype which is unfortunately a negative one is that those who are Hispanic or Latino/Latina are illegal immigrants. Similar thing to African American people specifically males that they are all thugs or gang members. Or those who are in the LGBTQ community are all child molesters. Having stereotypes toward folks is never a good thing as you are judging someone by the color of their skin.
Same thing goes towards people with disabilities and mental health conditions/challenges as individuals usually don’t act and/or learn the same way everyone else does. So what if this is true. Those of use with disabilities and/or mental health conditions tend to be more caring, loving, compassionate and empathetic than others.
Folks are stereotyped by there gender, religion, sexual orientation, race, education, and so on. So I ask that we put away are stereotypes of people and get to know them as a person. Thanks you for reading my blog. Peace Out, World
Good Evening, World!!! It’s been a long day for me. I started of the day having breakfast at place called Biscuit Bitch with former colleagues who I have become close friends with. Food and friends is always a good thing even if its at 7:30 in the morning. I, then went to Day Treatment today and saw my temporary therapist Gilbert. Todays session with Gilbert was more difficult than it usually is. I might talk about the session in a later post.
If you been reading my blogging regularly as of lately, you will know that I started a workbook called The Queer & Transgender Resilience Workbook by Anneliese Singh. I’m going to make every effort to tell you what I have learned after each chapter.
CHAPTER 1; GETTING REAL: DEFINING YOUR LGBTQ SELF IN A WOLD THAT DEMANDS COMFORMITY:
As the title of the chapter states, it has you define your LGBTQ self in the world around us. The chapter starts off asking how one identifies their sexual orientation and their gender identity. As it continues it starts asking about what you’re comfortable with sharing. This is the part where it started getting challenging for me as I think it depends on the situation I may be in.
Another part of chapter one that was difficult was searching within myself about affirmations I have toward myself and not just as an LGBTQ individual. This was difficult because I have very low self esteem and some if it is because of my gender identity and sexual orientation and some of it is not. Affirmations is something I need to work on and Gilbert agrees. He wants me to acknowledge that I have great affirmations and say them out loud.
Affirmations which I will say eventually. Maybe even after the end of this post. I should go and eat. Peace Out, World!!!
As many people in the United States (and around the world) are aware of by now, the United States Supreme Court ruled yesterday that same-sex marriage is now legal in all 50 states. Yes, all 50 states. I, like many around the country shed tears of joy when I heard the joyous news.
I shed tears of joy because this means that many people are now able to marry the person of their dreams, just like I am able to do so. I may be madly in love with Junior and engaged to marry him, I consider myself pansexual. For those of you that don’t know what pansexual is, the definition is as follows: not limited in sexual choice with biological sex, gender or gender identity. Yes, Junior knows I’m pansexual and he is fine with it. For me falling in love with the person of my dreams has nothing to do with the persons gender, gender identity or sexual orientation, it has to do with the persons personality. I fell in love with Junior because of who he is on the inside. I am thrilled I am able to marry Junior and just as thrilled same-sex couples are able to marry now.
Unfortunately, many people aren’t exactly thrilled with the Supreme Court ruling. It seems that the people who aren’t thrilled with the ruling happen to be people of faith and not just any faith; Christianity. The reason I say this is because I’ve noticed that on many social media sites (including WordPress) that Christians were being out right hateful. For example, I had posted on my the Facebook account I have for my given name, that I was beyond thrilled that same-sex marriage is now legal. Many people who are Christians on that particular account started messaging, texting, calling and emailing me saying they were offended and that I was “going to hell” because I support “gay marriage.” I even had a handful of people block me. I’m fine with that because if they are going to get offended for something I support then I don’t need them in my life. I just cant comprehend why a particular religion that preaches love and compassion can be so hateful when it comes to people getting married to the person they love even if that person is the same gender as they are. I am trying so hard to not be so judgmental toward that particular faith because I know many kind-hearted Christians out there and some of them even support same-sex marriage.
The ruling of same-sex marriage couldn’t have come at better time. It’s not only came in Gay Pride Month but the biggest weekend for the LGBT community; pride weekend. Yesterday, was a historical moment in United States history. I am beyond happy that this happened in my lifetime. I am sure that there are going to be many people and various types of groups that are going to try to get this ruling overturned. No matter how hard people may try to get the ruling overturned its never going to happen. Too many people will fight just as hard if not harder to keep the ruling in place.
I need to get going. I am heading out to pride festivities before I go and volunteer at the Warm Line. I know that the pride festivities will be more giddy than they have been in previous years because of yesterdays ruling. I love going to pride festivities. I hope to be able to blog after I get home from pride events and volunteering. Have a good day everyone and stay safe. Peace out!!!!