Why are Pronouns important in the LGBTQIA+ inclusive environment? | Aviva India

Why are Pronouns important in the LGBTQIA+ inclusive environment?

Pronouns are words that we use to refer to someone without using their name. They are important in the LGBTQIA+ inclusive environment because they allow us to respect people's preferred gender identity. People can use many different pronouns, and it is important to ask someone what their preferred pronouns are before assuming. Some common pronouns include:

  • - she/her/hers
  • - he/him/his
  • - they/them/theirs


What difference does it make?

Using someone's preferred pronouns is a way of showing respect for their gender identity. It can also help prevent misunderstandings and make communication smoother.

For example, if someone uses the pronoun "she" to refer to a person who prefers "he" pronouns, this can be confusing and hurtful. It's essential to always use a person's preferred pronouns to enable them to feel confident and accepted about who they are.


How to course-correct if you make a mistake while addressing someone?

If you accidentally use the wrong pronoun for someone, the best thing to do is to apologise and correct yourself. For example, "I'm sorry, I meant they."


What if I don't know someone's pronouns?

If you don't know someone's pronouns, the best thing to do is to ask them politely. For example, you can ask "Can I ask what pronouns you use?" or “How would you like to be addressed?”


Why do Allys also share their pronouns?

If you wish to be an Ally, it's important to share your pronouns because it sends a message of inclusion and respect. It also serves as an accommodating first step since it creates an environment where others feel comfortable to share theirs-, which is crucial for transgender and gender non-conforming people.


Is there a difference between sex and gender? How do I address this in my community?

Yes, there is a difference!

Sex can be referred to as a label for the biological characteristics of a person, for example, the sex chromosomes that a person has, their hormones, and their reproductive organs. Gender is the social and cultural characteristics of a person, such as how they dress, their haircut, their name, and their pronouns. Gender is also a societal and legal construct that affects a person's civic rights in society.


What is ‘non-binary gender identity’?

Non-binary is a blanket term for people who prefer not to be addressed as exclusively male or female. They identify as both male and female, somewhere in between, or neither. They may also use different pronouns than she/her/hers or he/him/his, such as they/them/theirs.


What does the term 'gender fluid' mean?

Gender fluidity is the ability to move between different gender identities and expressions. A gender fluid person associates with different genders at different times; they may also feel like they are somewhere in between genders. They may also use different pronouns depending on how they feel that day.


All in all, respect is at the core of everything we do as a community. And using someone's preferred pronouns is a crucial part of showing that respect. Be an ally by sharing your pronouns and accepting those around you just the way they are.



AN Feb 37/22


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