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It has happened.. pronouns have reached my workplace

(60 Posts)
KeyIndexAug Tue 05-Jan-21 13:07:57

I've read a lot of these threads but never actually seen people put pronouns in their email signature. Well today it happened...

Two different people I've had emails from today at work have specified pronouns in their signature.

I'm waiting for the inevitable announcement that what should all be doing it 😫

OP’s posts: |
Chrysanthemum5 Tue 05-Jan-21 13:15:00

I've gone through this twice at work with requests to add pronouns. I'm very clear that research shows women are treated more harshly in environments where there are reminders of biological sex so I won't be adding my pronouns. So far I've staved it off

Melange99 Tue 05-Jan-21 13:16:40

@Chrysanthemum5 Do you get asked by your line manager etc why you have not added them?

Chrysanthemum5 Tue 05-Jan-21 13:18:36

I'm fairly senior so it has come up at manage my meetings - I just reiterate that I believe it would be harmful to me as a woman and refuse. My refusal means that others who are less senior also feel they don't have to comply.

I'm always very polite but firm

KeyIndexAug Tue 05-Jan-21 13:20:07

@Chrysanthemum5 that's the approach I was going to go for when it comes to it. I have been discriminated against several times because I'm a woman so I don't want to have to advertise it even more than is already obvious

OP’s posts: |
Danu2021 Tue 05-Jan-21 13:21:26

Somebody on mn came up with a great response when she was pressured by her work. She said she didn't want to put any pressure on trans people who hadn't come out yet so in solidarity with those who weren't out as non binary yet, she wouldn't use any pronouns.

Brilliant! out woke them.

Floisme Tue 05-Jan-21 13:31:59

I've changed my plan after following a few threads about this. I now think there's a lot to be said for giving them as little information - and as little rope - as possible. I'm now going to stick to, 'No thanks' for as long as I possibly can.

DeaconBoo Tue 05-Jan-21 13:34:21

It's not just about pressure. Workplaces don't have the legal right to make people announce their transgender status - which is in effect what this would be doing for at least some people, whose rights are as valid as anyone else's. In fact broadcasting anyone's transgender status could be a breach of GDPR.

SweetPetrichor Tue 05-Jan-21 13:49:39

We have it as part of our professional email signature template...you add it if you want to. No big deal. Most people don’t bother but my colleague does because her surname is a male first name, so people often forget the surname, first name email address format and call her by her male surname. The addition of female pronouns is a handy wee reminder to people who don’t know her and may be about to call her the wrong thing!

I personally don’t see the ‘discrimination’ angle being very applicable given that your name is generally in any professional email signature so unless you have an ambiguous name, people can tell if you’re female even if you don’t put pronouns. If they’re going to discriminate, you avoiding adding pronouns won’t make a blind bit of difference.

growinggreyer Tue 05-Jan-21 13:56:18

If they’re going to discriminate, you avoiding adding pronouns won’t make a blind bit of difference.

So there is no point in adding them. Problem sorted, Ta.

FannyCann Tue 05-Jan-21 14:01:09

I've recently seen my first one, (NHS) hospital. I wish I could add the screen shot as it is a particularly irritating example of the genre.

Curly whirly writing: kind regards, first name
Mrs X-Z (Bold)
My pronouns are she/her/hers
Job title (Bold)

Maybe I missed the memo but I kind of thought that if you wished to be addressed as Mrs it could reasonably be assumed that your identity would be female. Even for a married transwoman.

Now I really want to send her an email and address her as Ms X-Z. grin

TalkingintheDark Tue 05-Jan-21 14:05:10

unless you have an ambiguous name, people can tell if you’re female even if you don’t put pronouns. If they’re going to discriminate, you avoiding adding pronouns won’t make a blind bit of difference.

I don’t think that’s actually true, SweetPetrichor. There have been studies done that show that women themselves, when reminded beforehand that they are female, perform less well on tests in traditionally male dominated areas than they do if they are not reminded.

Presumably all these women were very well aware of being female before taking the tests, and yet it was the reminders that served to reinforce a lack of confidence in their own ability, at an unconscious level, to the extent that they actually underperformed.

By the same token, yes, women are already discriminated against on the basis of their female names, but drawing extra attention to their femaleness can only serve to amplify and intensify that possibility of discrimination.

So many of the messages we give out and receive operate at an unconscious level, and misogyny itself still operates very vigorously at an unconscious level even in seemingly progressive western societies, so even people who think they have no bias - even women themselves - risk downgrading their perception of women’s abilities and competence when they are constantly reminded of the fact of their being female.

This just adds to the already extant burden of discrimination, which we are by no means close to resolving - proven by those experiments where people simply pretend to be the opposite sex for a while and are treated completely differently as a result.

It harms women, who are already being harmed more than enough.

2BDIs Tue 05-Jan-21 14:36:42

I had one the other day from Good Law project that had at bottom of signature
Pronouns - her/she.

What sort of world have we come to that so many people are affected and triggered by pronouns and misgendering.
Trans are such a small mintorty of the population that we are pandering to, its making me loose my compassion for people going through an identity crisis.
keep having it rammed down my through all the time is so draining and I find it inappropriate that women are loosing their biological identity that we and our predecessors have fought so hard for.
If people say he instead of she just politely correct them, its not hard

RoyalCorgi Tue 05-Jan-21 15:01:37

It must be so tempting just to play them at their own game and come up with something outlandish like xe/xer. After all who are they to say how you identify?

gardenbird48 Tue 05-Jan-21 15:07:08

RoyalCorgi

It must be so tempting just to play them at their own game and come up with something outlandish like xe/xer. After all who are they to say how you identify?

I could be tempted if I could use Your/Royal/Highness

BreastedBoobilyToTheStairs Tue 05-Jan-21 15:20:02

Enforced pronoun use is against Principle 6 of the Yogyakarta Principles, which covers the right to privacy (which generally includes right to privacy regarding gender and sexuality). It also adds undue pressure on those questioning their gender identity who aren't ready to come out but don't feel comfort claiming the pronouns of a gender they don't identify with.

Or the old 'my pronouns are sex based like my oppression' response always makes me smile.

I'll probably go with a 'I won't be including my pronouns, you may refer to me as you wish when I'm not there, and when I am just call me Breasted' type response when we're inevitably asked and if they push, highlight how very detrimental to women and unsupportive of gender questioning individuals their policy is. If someone wants to include them, fine, but I won't be compelled.

Gurufloof Tue 05-Jan-21 15:22:46

I personally don’t see the ‘discrimination’ angle being very applicable given that your name is generally in any professional email signature so unless you have an ambiguous name, people can tell if you’re female even if you don’t put pronouns. If they’re going to discriminate, you
avoiding adding pronouns won’t make a blind bit of difference
Plenty of people simply put an initial, or dr or rev or chair or chief or vicar or JP or any number of other designators.
And if not adding pronouns to emails will make no difference then why bother?

CranberriesChoccyAgain Tue 05-Jan-21 15:30:45

Danu2021

Somebody on mn came up with a great response when she was pressured by her work. She said she didn't want to put any pressure on trans people who hadn't come out yet so in solidarity with those who weren't out as non binary yet, she wouldn't use any pronouns.

Brilliant! out woke them.

Oh I love that. 😊

helloxhristmas Tue 05-Jan-21 15:36:12

I got my first ever email today too - it was from a recruitment agent not my company but it's the first time I've ever seen it.

BraveBananaBadge Tue 05-Jan-21 18:23:52

I wonder a lot what would happen if they tried to do this at my work. Can’t get staff to comply with the company email signature template at the best of times, so I hope it could just be easily ignored. To work somewhere where there’s be a witch hunt if you didn’t would be pretty frightening.

Cailleach1 Tue 05-Jan-21 20:03:48

How do you incorporate the vital selected pronouns? Would you say 'As Jenny ze/him/she Alcock was saying the other day? Or would you say 'As ze/him/she Jenny Alcock was saying the other day'?

Do you have as much latitude to create your own? Could you say yours are herim/Royal/Majesty etc.? No more strange than ze/zie etc. At least Royal and majesty are real words.

Yogaposer Tue 05-Jan-21 21:18:04

I work for a small family business, so far we are immune to all the wokery. Long may it continue.

ForeverFaithless Tue 05-Jan-21 21:23:17

If pushed, quite likely in the woke company I work for, I'm very much tempted to go with stunning/brave, as they are perfectly valid 'adjectives repurposed as pronouns' to describe me.

SosYourFace Tue 05-Jan-21 21:23:54

He he

RosesAndHellebores Tue 05-Jan-21 21:26:54

So far I've just added Mrs to my email signature alongside my unmistakably female first name but if pressed I shall be happy to ad "I and me". But I am nearing retirement and give less flying fucks about being provocative than I once did.

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