He/she/they, transgender, non-binary, and other terms are ones that we are hearing more about. Finally. Discussions about how gender and sexual orientation are different are finally happening, and that’s a good thing. For too long, people have been silenced when they have every right to be proud and vocal about who they are. Hiding one’s true self is an isolating, lonely experience that I don’t wish on anyone.
Recently, I read an article about how transgender women are referred to by different terms in various countries. I didn’t realize that!
It makes sense, though, given the differences in language and how slang terms can be specific to a country. For example, while the word couch is one that I use all the time here in North America, in the UK they are more likely to say the word sofa.
Of course, people are way more important than the sofa/couch! With that in mind, I read this article wondering whether the words would be respectful or not. I was happy to see that they are, according to the infographic below.
The addition of words for transgender women in different languages and parts of the world shows that there is finally a sense of acknowledgement for those who were ignored for far too long.
The main thing I look for in language is that the word is not putting down someone but instead showing them the same respect as anyone else. That’s what we all deserve.
Reading this article also showed me that we are really connected. Whether you say travesti in Latin America or waria in Indonesia, we are talking about trans people and that’s awesome. We are all using language to communicate and we are all human. Thus, we all deserve to be part of the conversation, learn and grow, and enjoy a good quality of life.
I also want to point out something that that article does not touch on, which I think is important too. That is, you can be called whatever you want to be. Not everyone wants the trans label. Instead, you might want to simply be identified as a woman.
If you are talked about in a way that you do not like, please speak up. I am she and her, for example.
Also, I encourage you to continue to learn about other languages. There is a lot to benefit from when you do. Learning a second language (or third or fourth…) gives you insights into other cultures, and that’s a powerful thing. It helps create a sense of community. We all live in the same world – and we have to band together to get through this lifetime!
Finally, each country has a unique history with trans people. If you are trans, you have the right to have your gender identity recognized by the government. I realize that I have a lot to learn still about trans history in Canada, where I live, and other parts of the world. I am open to learning more and want the world to be more inclusive.
There are still so many transgender issues. But I hope that discussions like this one will help to move the conversation forward.
Infographic Design By My Ladyboy Date