Starbucks was cold and loud, so Dan, Lanie, and Natascha went over to the Shanty to continue their interview.
Natascha: We changed locations to the Shanty for warmer and quieter conditions. Hi Dan. Thank you for coming today!
Natascha: How’s your day going?
Dan: It’s going great. It’s really cold.
Natascha: It is pretty cold day. At least it’s not raining yet.
Dan and Natascha: Yet… [laughs]
Natascha: Can you tell me your pronouns?
Dan: I use she and he. A lot of people get confused about that, so I’m here to talk about it today.
Natascha: Awesome. Can you tell me a little bit about yourself?
Dan: I am a percussionist, and I like to paint. And I work with children on the spectrum. [Inaudible]
Natascha: You want to come a little bit closer?
Dan: I should and talk louder too.
Natascha: There we go. How has transitioning been like for you?
Dan: So, I am intersex. For those that don’t know what that term means. It’s an umbrella term that categorizes a difference in genitalia or chromosomes. It is something someone is born as. It is not an identity. It is a way someone is born, and it is not necessarily what someone identifies. An umbrella term to talk about someone who is born without traditional male or female characteristics.
Natascha: Thank you. Why is it important to use the proper pronouns?
Dan: It brings validation. It shows a sign of care and respect. It’s like learning somebodies name. You wouldn’t- It’s understandable if you don’t want to learn someone’s name, you don’t want to get to know them. But, if you are going to ask their name, you’re not going to call them a different name [second of inaudible.] It’s a sign of respect and acceptance.
Why do you think it might be hard for some cis-gendered folks, or why they would be bothered by the use of they/ them pronouns?
Dan: Learning is hard, and it can be embarrassing if- and seeing somebody upset and sometimes in order to make yourself feel better, they’d say, ‘You have no reason to be upset.’ versus maybe I need to reflect on what I can do differently to accommodate and respect you as a human being.
Natascha: Thank you. Why is it important to introduce children into the LGBTQ community?
Dan: There are LGBTQ children, and without that community, it can make someone feel isolated and alone.
Natascha: Do you feel that transition has changed you in any way?
Dan: So, particularly with my case, I’ve always felt the need to appear as Afact or a cis-female. If that means altering certain characteristics, which I’m not going to go into detail about, or hormone supplements, at this point of my life, finding a community where we are genderqueer, and I have the ability to accept myself, who I am, and all the lovely characteristics that make who I am and not needing to edit this. So, the act of transitioning for me is essentially me being myself, whatever that looks like- letting myself exist for once, as I am- as I wake up in the morning, as I. Yes.
Natascha: Thank you so much for coming onto Little Lost Forest and talking to me. Also, sharing with our community here in Eureka and everyone else who comes to the blog why it is important to use proper pronouns and why (cis) people shouldn’t take offense when asked what their pronouns are because we’re in this community together and to show respect to one another and the people in the community need to change the way we think and respect and appreciate members of the LGBTQ community within our society these include people with religious degrees and people that assist disabled children. When disrespecting someones announced pronouns, you don’t know who you’re talking to, their background, and what they had to endure. By not respecting someone’s pronouns, they are not respecting our community as a whole. Thank you, folxs, for coming on today. Is there anything that you want to add?
Dan: Yes, the more we learn about this, the more people will have the ability to have language to advocate for themselves in a medical way. I can’t tell you how much that has changed in my ability to talk about the things that my body needs, and that’s not something that necessarily a woman who is cis might need. And even though the doctor might see that’s what I am assigned from my birth, it isn’t necessarily what my body needs. So just those terms, the education behind those terms, just having doctors that are educated on what that is because I have come across a lot of medical professionals that don’t know. It’s healthy. At the very least, I can go to the doctor and get care.
Natascha: That is so important. Alright, thank you.