Are you a he or she: what will it be? That’s the million-dollar question on job applications. But in an age where gender fluidity is rising, how do you answer that question and honestly represent who you are inside?
For some people, answering this he or she: what will it be question will be as simple and straightforward as checking a box to indicate their preferred gender identity: Male or Female. Those are the two most common categories for choosing your gender identity when applying for a job or registering for classes at any educational institution. However, if you feel that neither of those identities accurately represents who you are inside, you’ll need to get creative when filling out all those forms.
There may not be space to check “Other” (or any other pre-existing nonbinary options). Still, there are plenty of ways to answer honestly while leaving room for your unique expression of self without feeling boxed in by traditional boxes.so, how will you answer this he or she: what will it be?
Why Do We Keep Telling Everyone to Be a He or She: What will it be?
First, it’s essential to understand why the “Male” and “Female” categories exist. These categories were introduced in the early 20th century to collect data about the gender breakdown of populations more easily.
In the 1930s, the Census Bureau even used “sexuality as a basis for defining a person’s identity.” For a long time, the categories for gender identity were limited to “Male” and “Female”; those were the only two options. If this describes your experience, you probably remember how frustrating it was to have no alternatives for gender identity that felt like they genuinely represented you.
Other Gender Options You Can Include in Job Applications
Many people have recently expanded upon the “Male” and “Female” categories, thanks to the rise of nonbinary gender identities. Job applications and forms, however, have yet to catch up with the evolving definitions of gender. This leaves many people who don’t identify with the binary genders with limited options for providing the application’s required information.
Social Security Cards: You’re most likely to encounter this dilemma when registering for a new Social Security card or applying for government benefits like Medicare. On the application, you’re asked to choose “Male” or “Female” or to answer the question he or she: what will it be? But if you do identify as nonbinary, there isn’t any space for you to add your information. The same goes for driver’s license applications, where you’ll find yourself in a similar situation with the “Sex” field to choose whether he or she: what will it be?
Birth Certificates: When applying for a new birth certificate, there are spaces for “female,” “male,” or “gender not specified,” though only 19 states allow you to check the nonbinary option.
Check the “Other” Box
You can always check the “other” box if none of the categories fit. This option is becoming more widely accepted for applications where you can select multiple categories, including gender. Although you might have seen this option when filling out forms as a child, you may not have wanted to take a risk by checking “other.”
After all, others might not have understood what you were trying to say. Now, you can feel confident checking “other,” mainly if you explain in the “Comments” section. You can write whatever you like here, but don’t make it offensive.
“Other” is an excellent option if you aren’t sure which category to select, but you know you aren’t male or female. You can simply write “Other” and leave it at that.
Use Your Own Words and Sentence Structure
If words like “other” or “not specified” don’t feel right, then you can try to explain your gender identity in your own words. You can write about your experience with gender or include a sentence about your identity, whether you are a he or she: what will it be?
You can also use bullet points to illustrate your experience more clearly. For example, you could write, “I was assigned male at birth, but I don’t identify as a man. I identify as gender-neutral.” Or, “I’ve always felt like my gender identity is in the middle. I’m not as masculine as some men, and I’m not as feminine as some women.” This approach can be a great way of explaining your experience with gender in a way that is entirely yours. You can write whatever you want, whatever feels right to you.
Write Your Gender in Your Own Words
If you feel sentence structure isn’t enough, you can write the words you would use to describe your gender identity as he or she: what will it be? You can do this in the comments or alongside the other description methods.
This can help you to clearly explain your experience with gender in a way that genuinely makes sense to you. You can use the words that feel right and true to you rather than trying to fit your experience into categories that might not fit at all.
Some words to get started are; androgynous.; bigender; genderqueer, intersex, masculine, multigender, neither, nonbinary, non-girl, non-boy, non-conforming, non-feminine, non-masculine, the person of transgender, trans, transfeminine, transmasculine, Two-spirit.
The vital thing is to make sure you’re selecting the best option for how you see yourself, whether he or she: what will it be? Sometimes that means using just one word or category. Other times, it means combining a few different descriptions. There are many methods to be nonbinary, and there isn’t just one way to apply that to job applications, registration forms, or any other application.
There is a broad spectrum of gender identities and experiences, and you can choose whichever makes the most sense for you and your identity as he or she: what will it be? Most importantly, you don’t have to live your life as he or she when you might not identify with either of those genders. There are plenty of ways to answer he or she: what will it be in a way that indicates who you are inside?