Culture is inherently creative.A growing number of humans are choosing to identify outside of the gender binary. With gender norms in a state of flux in many Western societies, people are finding creative ways to use language to include emerging gender identities in every day life.

The use of the pronoun ‘they’ to refer to nonbinary individuals is one such example. I came up with the concept behind this design one lazy afternoon and you used your graphic design skills to execute it.

When I was first introduced to the concept of nonbinary individuals, it didn’t really surprise me. I’d met lots of folks over the years whose attitudes or gender presentation would be considered non-traditional and this was simply a way to better express that.

What was challenging for me was wrapping my head around the “they” pronoun itself. I understood it and I absolutely wanted to respect it; however, decades of he/him and she/her were ingrained in my brain’s language centre. I was so afraid I would make a mistake and offend them—or you—in my lingual clumsiness.

In the end I realized it’s the respect that matters. If one does make a mistake, all one can really do is pick oneself up and try again.