Hey, everyone. I have a question. I have two very close friends who support LGBT rights. They have a friend, whom I have never met, who is a female to male Transgender person. Occasionally they are talking about this person in a non-gossipping way and I provide my input. I want to refer to this person with female pronouns since she is really a woman and not a man even though she identifies as a man. However, if I refer to her as a woman instead of a man then this is going to be deeply offensive to my friends. What should I do? I don’t want to cause an argument by using the most accurate pronoun but if I don’t use her preferred pronoun I could cause an argument.
Is causing an argument the worst thing that could happen?
Maybe you could have a discussion instead of an argument. You would not be alone, since prestigious doctors have refused to do the sex change operation since they believe it’s a mental illness, and it’s no more appropriate than doing liposuction on an anorexic person.
I had a long conversation on the subject with my brother and his friend, and clearly stated I thought it was a mental illness. Turns out later that the friend was a transgender person. Very embarrassing. But rather rude of them not to mention it.
Still, I was glad I hadn’t said anything mean, except for saying he had a mental illness. Although I don’t really think that’s mean.
I hope you and others find the following helpful.
Well, for my ow peace of mind, I would avoid the conversation or find something pressing in the next room
Or, if I HAD to stay, I’d use the person’s name.
But honestly, I really loathe these kinds of scenarios. I’m to blunt. I’d rather just take myself out of the equation.
But I understand your dilemma.
I agree here with PianistClare, if possible use the person’s name, or better yet, avoid the conversation altogether…
Thank you, everyone. I like the suggestion of using the person’s name but I am fairly sure that the name they go by is not their original name. I am fairly certain that they are using a male name to go along with the fact that they perceive themselves to be male. I say this because the only name I know this person by is a name that is pretty exclusively a male name. At least I think it is. I’ve never heard anyone who is female have this particular name before.
Well, maybe you simply say to your friends, that you’d rather not comment but you wish their friend all the best. Tell the truth. You don’t have much to add to the conversation. I’m not sure why they feel like this poor souls situation is any of their business anyway.
In life, we often meet or come across people whose lifestyle we can’t get behind.
It’s best to just wish them well, dust off your sandals, and move on. You don’t have to give tacit approval, you don’t have to comment in any way, really.
“I don’t have anything to add, really. Got to run folks…see you all later. Give my best to .”
They will eventually see that this line of convo makes you uncomfortable. And if they shun for it ,shame on them.
God bless you.
Yes to all of the above. Best not play the pronoun game in this scenario.
Thanks. I appreciate the advice!