"Opinion" Adjusting your pronoun/A search for identity

Jennifer Bonn

A bathroom door expressing acceptance of all gendersPhoto byJen Bonn

When the topic of using the correct pronoun first became popular, I was confused. My first question was if I’m addressing a person why would I use any other pronoun than you? If we are talking about respecting someone, in this case concerning a choice of gender, isn’t it simpler to agree to respect people in general by speaking to them directly and not in the third person?

My husband and I went into a Starbucks where the baristas had name tags that told their pronouns. I again had questions when one name tag said Sheila’s pronouns were she and they. I have to ask how can Sheila be they if she is only one person. When I told my husband I didn’t understand, he said, “Honey, I don’t think I even remember what a pronoun is.” I hope he was kidding.

Before you say I have missed the whole point, let me assure you that I understand, and I believe everyone has the right to be whoever they choose to be. I also understand how difficult that can be. There are societal and family norms that can restrict the search for identity, and haters are everywhere no matter who you choose to be.

I think we have lost our minds when it comes to identity, and in my humble opinion, a lot of that comes from social media. Social media platforms can attack your view of who you are and harm your mental health, whether it is the barrage of ads and videos telling you how you should look or act, or the judgments about posts, likes, and followers. You can lose yourself instead of seeing the beauty of who you are meant to be.

Make your search for your identity less complicated. Forget about who everyone else wants you to be. What will make you happy? Be that person. No matter what you do there will be haters and people who don’t want your happiness, but there are also genuinely good people who will lift you up. Find them and leave the negative energy behind.

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I am passionate about running, parenting, education, and self-help information. I enjoy writing articles that will offer readers the information needed to help them in some way. I recently retired from teaching French and Spanish for forty years. I run every day and have done all kinds of races from 5ks to ultra-marathons. I have three children and three grandchildren. I write for several magazines in my area, I am a contributor and in charge of the Pinterest board for a parenting magazine called Screamin Mamas, and I have a second book about to be released through Loving, Healing Press called 101 Tips to Ease Your Burdens.

Kennesaw, GA

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