The following was originally posted to Twitter in a thread by Tea Berry-Blue (she/they). I have adapted and reposted it here, with their permission, so that it can be preserved as a resource for writers! You can find her on Twitter @TeaBerryBlue. Any changes from the original thread are approved by both parties and based on feedback from the mentioned communities.
A lot of people are asking questions about inclusive descriptions for gender-diverse groups that will let people know who is welcome without misgendering anyone. The following is a guide:
|If you want to include:||Then use:|
|Any woman (trans or cis)||“Women”|
Note: this does not include nonbinary/genderqueer people unless they also identify as women.
|Only trans women||“Trans women”|
Note: this does not include nonbinary/genderqueer people unless they also identify as trans women.
|Only cis women||“Cis women”|
Note 1: You had better be doing something like a pharmaceutical trial or psych survey or this looks very dubious.
Note 2: This does not include nonbinary/genderqueer people unless they also ID as cis women, which is very uncommon.
|Only people for whom the doctor said, “It’s a girl!” when they were born||“Anyone who was assigned female at birth”|
Note: this includes trans men and some but not all nonbinary people and intersex people.
|Only people for whom the doctor said, “It’s a boy!” when they were born||“Anyone who was assigned male at birth”|
Note: this includes trans women and some, but not all, nonbinary people and intersex people.
|Only people who menstruate||“People who menstruate” or “people with periods”|
Note: this does not include people of any gender who do not menstruate for any reason (age, health, surgery, medication, etc.).
|Trans women, cis women, and nonbinary people who are not women but feel that they would benefit from inclusion in a woman-centric space||“Women: this space is nonbinary-inclusive”|
|Trans men, cis men, and nonbinary people who are not men but feel that they would benefit from inclusion in a man-centric space||“Men: this space is nonbinary-inclusive”|
|Only trans people||“Trans people”|
Note: some nonbinary people identify as trans. Some do not. If you want to include any nonbinary people who feel they would benefit from inclusion in a trans-centric space, instead use “trans people: this space is nonbinary-inclusive”
|Anyone who is not cis||“Trans, nonbinary, two-spirit, genderqueer, agender, and otherwise gender-divergent”|
Note: Yes, it’s a mouthful, but gender is complicated and different people have different ways of relating to it.
|Anyone who is not a cisgender man (i.e. women, transgender men, and nonbinary people of all genders)||“People of marginalized gender experiences”|
Note: “Marginalized genders” includes nonbinary people who may read as cis men to you, so please vocally encourage your group to be radically inclusive.
A general reminder that when you are trying to create inclusive spaces, being vocal about your inclusion is best. Lots of trans people will assume a space is not for them unless it’s clearly stated.
It’s also important to be careful of gatekeeping events. It’s extremely upsetting and even traumatic for a trans or nonbinary person to be excluded because they don’t read as the “right” gender to you. This happens to AMAB (assigned male at birth) people a lot in supposedly inclusive spaces.
Another tip is to normalize pronoun tags even in single-gender spaces. There are increasingly more people who don’t use traditionally-gendered pronouns even if they identify with a traditional binary gender.
Please feel free to ask questions if you have them!
Note: At the end of their thread, Tea Berry-Blue puts out a call for readers to donate to Trans Lifeline. This is “a grassroots hotline and microgrants 501(c)(3) non-profit organization offering direct emotional and financial support to trans people in crisis – for the trans community, by the trans community.” If you are able, you can donate directly on the Trans Lifeline website.