- I recently had to fill out a medical form at the VA and was surprised to see that the “Gender” block had been changed. Instead of having just “M” and “F” is shows “Gender Assigned at Birth – M of F”.
I understand that in today’s world, gender identification is almost a science of its own because many people who were assigned the “M” gender at birth don’t mentally or socially associate themselves with other “M” assignees. I get it. Same goes for those assigned the “F”. I’m sure this has been an issue for many many generations but it just wasn’t discussed so openly as it is now.
Complicating this further, gender pronouns are a hot button for many folks, so I did a little research and found this info provided by the Vassar LGBTQ Center.
What is a gender pronoun?
- A gender pronoun is a pronoun that a person chooses to use for themself. For example: If Xena’s gender pronouns are she, her, and hers, you could say “Xena ate her food because she was hungry.”
OK, got it. People can choose their own gender pronouns to reflect how they feel about themselves. I respect that and do my best to comply with their wishes when I encounter the need.
I submit, however, that doing this does not mean that an assigned “M” is changing their gender simply by letting people know they prefer to be called “her” or “she”. It’s a preference based on how they view themselves. At the end of the day, an “M” is still an “M” and an “F” is still an “F” even for those who identify with the opposite assigned gender.
So, I think those medical forms that use “Gender Assigned at Birth” should get an additional line requesting to know “What Gender Pronoun do you Prefer – Him or Her?”.
It’s a complicated world we live in and navigating the hazards is becoming more difficult. It isn’t my desire to offend anyone but not knowing the rules places me in harms way. I suspect that’s true for some of you, too. Hopefully, sharing this information from Vassar will help clear things up for all of us.
I will not report on this issue in the future. It’s just one of those things that got into my head and the only way I can get it out of there is to write it down.