The Case for Pronouns

Mia Frankenfield, Staff Writer

I have always been an open person, even on social media, whether that means posting about something I support or just allowing people to know who I really am. In May of 2021, Instagram created a feature that allowed you to add your pronouns next to your name display on your profile. 

Preferred gender pronouns or personal gender pronouns refer to what an individual wants others to use in order to reflect that person’s gender identity. 

Many students at Center Grove feel the same way I do when it comes to putting pronouns in Instagram bios; my pronouns had been in my bio even before this feature came out. When people started realizing they were able to choose their pronouns, it started a controversy. People actually cared what other people put as their pronouns. People complained about how it was ridiculous and disrespectful to have the new feature added. But why? Why were people so upset? It is not required to put your pronouns in your Instagram. It’s a choice. 

People choose to put their pronouns in their bio for different reasons. For some, they have their pronouns in their bio to raise awareness on why they have pronouns in their bio and to comfort others by making them feel like they are able to be themselves. The reason I put my pronouns in my bio was to show support to everyone who’s trans and non-binary. Putting pronouns in my bio was something that took me 30 seconds and can end up helping the trans community. Seeing my pronouns in my bio also may let someone who is trans know that I stand with them, and I want them to know that. I feel that people who struggle with gender identity should feel more included and know they are not alone. 

It was shocking that after I put my pronouns in my bio I started getting direct messages from people –some from people who wanted to thank me and acknowledge that I put them in my bio, and some that were unnecessarily angry with me. I did not mind that people disagreed with me because I did it on my own. It was my choice.

I know that I would like to feel comfortable in my skin if I chose to go by different pronouns. People I am close with have changed their pronouns, and it does not harm me to do it as well. It makes me sad that people are being attacked for being themselves, so I chose to put my pronouns in my bio to help other people feel comfortable. If putting my pronouns in my Instagram helps others feel safer, it is something I am all for. I wish people were more \accepting and supporting of the non-binary and transgender community. 

We should normalize and educate the public about pronouns, and explain that there is nothing wrong with choosing to change your pronouns or even just putting them in your Instagram bio to show support.

Overall, the last thing I want to do is to belittle people’s opinions and beliefs, but to encourage others to think about the people around them and be kind.