My pronouns are:

he/him or she/her

(Interchangeable forms: Normative “he/him” or Normative “she/her”)

Example usage in sentences:

  • I think he is very nice.
  • I asked him if I can borrow his pencil.
  • He told me that the house is his.
  • He said he would rather do it himself.

Table:

Subject Object Possessive determiner Possessive pronoun Reflexive
he him his his himself

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Examples from cultural texts:

Interchangeable forms (he or she)

  • Lena Scherman, Linda HörnqvistLåt mig leva [Let me live] (Sveriges Television), 2020; a Swedish Television documentary featuring Polish non-binary activist Lucien Gaszyńska

    • [Lucien] I switch between female pronouns and male pronouns when I'm speaking. I define myself as non-binary. Yeah, I'm non-binary.
  • Non-binary person – who is it? Margot, Łukasz Jurewicz and other LGBT persons (Polish News), 2020

    • Łukasz is studying – he will be a paramedic in a year. She has had internships and volunteers behind her. – I am an ordinary person and my everyday life looks like everyone else – she emphasizes. He speaks openly and honestly about himself, especially today in the context of the recent events and Margot’s arrest – also a non-binary person.
  • Rick RiordanThe Hammer of Thor, 2016

    • Look, some people prefer they (...) They’re nonbinary or mid-spectrum or whatever. If they want you to use they, then that’s what you should do. But for me, personally, I don’t want to use the same pronouns all the time, because that’s not me. I change a lot. That’s sort of the point. When I’m she, I’m she. When I’m he, I’m he. I’m not they. Get it?
  • Rick RiordanThe Ship of the Dead, 2017

    • I suppose that was meant to be funny. Most of the time, Alex identified as female, but today he was definitely male. Sometimes I slipped up and used the wrong pronouns for him/her, so Alex liked to return the favor by teasing me mercilessly. Because friendship.
  • Chuck WendigStar Wars: Aftermath: Life Debt, 2016

    • I envy you today for the blessing you are about to receive as you are poised ineluctably to meet his highness, her glory, his wonder, her luminous magnificence—the picaroon! The plunderer! The pirate ruler of Wild Space! The glorious knave, Eleodie Maracavanya!

Normative “he/him” (he/him)

  • Canadian actor Elliot Page shares he is transgender (CBC News), 2020

    • Page said he has been inspired by many in the trans community, and thanked them for their courage, generosity and working to make the world a more inclusive and compassionate place.
      While Page said his joy is real, it is also "fragile." Despite feeling profoundly happy and acknowledging his privilege, he is also scared of the invasiveness, the hate, the jokes and the violence.
  • Ursula K. Le GuinThe Left Hand of Darkness, 1969

    • He was so feminine in looks and manner that I once asked him how many children he had. He looked glum. He had never borne any. He had, however, sired four. It was one of the little jolts I was always getting. Cultural shock was nothing much compared to the biological shock I suffered as a human male among human beings who were, five-sixths of the time, hermaphroditic neuters.@Seven years we were kemmerings, and had two sons. Being of his flesh born they had his name Foreth rem ir Osboth, and were reared in that Clanhearth. Three years ago he had gone to Orgny Fastness and he wore now the gold chain of a Celibate of the Foretellers. We had not seen each other those three years, yet seeing his face in the twilight under the arch of stone I felt the old habit of our love as if it had been broken yesterday, and knew the faithfulness in him that had sent him to share my ruin. And feeling that unavailing bond close on me anew, I was angry; for Ashe’s love had always forced me to act against my heart.

Normative “she/her” (she/her)

  • Alicja Ptak, Marcin GocłowskiThousands protest in Poland demanding release of LGBT activist (Reuters), 2020

    • The police started releasing detained protesters on Saturday, but not Margot.
      She is a member of the activist group “Stop Bzdurom”. The group have said they hung flags on statues last week as part of a fight for LGBT rights, an issue thrust into the heart of public debate in Poland during last month’s presidential election.
  • Jacob StolworthyEddie Izzard praised after fans notice use of she/her pronouns in latest TV appearance (The Independent), 2020

    • Earlier this week, the stand-up comedy star, 58, appeared on Sky Arts series Portrait Artist of the Year in which the show’s host Stephen Mangan and contestants referred to Izzard as “she” and “her”. Izzard’s fans, who were catching up with the show at the weekend, have posted supportive messages on social media.@Speaking about her decision, Izzard told contestant Chris Holder: "This is the first programme I've asked if I can be 'she' and 'her' – this is a little transition period." She said “it feels very positive”, adding: “I just want to be based in girl mode from now on.”
  • Ursula K. Le GuinWinter's King (in: The Wind's Twelve Quarters), 1975

    • “Argaven looked at them, face after face, the bowed heads and the unbowed.
      “I am Argaven,” she said. “I was king. Who reigns now in Karhide?”

  • Ann LeckieAncillary Justice, 2013

    • She was probably male, to judge from the angular mazelike patterns quilting her shirt. I wasn’t entirely certain. It wouldn’t have mattered, if I had been in Radch space. Radchaai don’t care much about gender, and the language they speak—my own first language—doesn’t mark gender in any way. This language we were speaking now did, and I could make trouble for myself if I used the wrong forms. It didn’t help that cues meant to distinguish gender changed from place to place, sometimes radically, and rarely made much sense to me.

  • YUNGBLUDmars (from the album “weird!”), 2020; This song is a pretty simple but sad story of a trans woman.

    • She dreamed she'd go to California
      There everyone would adore her
      And all her mates will call her
      'Til four in the morning”@But she can't be herself when she's somebody else
    • In the morning, she would take her mother's wedding ring

What's the deal with pronouns?

We all have pronouns. They're those words that we use instead of calling someone by their name every time we mention them. Most people use “he/him” and “she/her”, so we automatically assume which one to call them based on someone's looks. But it's actually not that simple…

Gender is complicated. Some people “don't look like” their gender. Some prefer being called in a different way from what you'd assume. Some people don't fit into the boxes of “male” or “female” and prefer more neutral language.

This tool lets you share a link to your pronouns, with example sentences, so that you can show people how you like to be called.

Why does it matter? Because of simple human decency. You wouldn't call Ashley “Samantha” just because you like that name more or because “she looks like a Samantha to you”. Or even if she does have the name “Samantha” in her birth certificate but she absolutely hates it and prefers to use “Ashley”. And it's the exact same story with pronouns – if you don't want to be rude towards someone, please address them properly. The only difference is that we usually know names, but not pronouns. We introduce ourselves with a name, but not pronouns. Let's change that!

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