"Don't call me 'cisgender'!"

Spinning off from this thread so as not to derail.

In my experience, the assumption that people who complain about “cis-” want to avoid those terms is unwarranted. If it isn’t, what do people object to about it? Aesthetics?

If we have transgender and cisgender, do we also have metagender?

Is this what happens when structural chemists get involved in gender discussions?

At the risk of losing points on my conservative cred card, I agree with Miller’s quoted sentiment. The term “real” to describe a cisgendered person invites the inference that the gender of a compared individual is somehow not real.

“Natural” and “normal” suffer similar flaws.

Although I am curious about something… to me, this result is in line with a language prescriptivist viewpoint.

Occasionally, in the prescriptivist vs. descriptivist wars, the (D) side will be heard to complain, “Who cares? You know what I meant!”

What’s the response to such a complaint? As a certified §, I feel it’s enough to say that rules is rules.

Yes, it’s a pretty ugly word, because the the cis– prefix is obscure and the medical condition known as a cyst is revolting, widely-known and a near homophone. For better or worse, the word is intrinsically associated with something considered bad.

More importantly, the word was essentially created by the transsexual community to describe people who weren’t part of it. A group should have the authority to determine what they want to be called. I understand that cisgender serves a valuable purpose as a word, and I’ve probably used it a couple times myself. But this is English, the language seemingly without rules, and we can surely come up with a less-loaded term.

Really? That’s funny, but “cysts” never come to mind when I think of my sisters or going to the symphony.

Most people don’t know what “cisgendered” means.

To each his own. There’s evidently no connection between the words for you. But that’s what I think of when I hear the word, and that’s why I don’t like it.

They’ll learn, over time(response to John Mace).

That’s a systemic failure of your imagination.

Yes, that’s true – but then again, most people would be comfortable calling a cisgendered person “normal,” without pausing to consider the inaccurate implications of the word. For that matter, most people don’t use the subjunctive mood correctly, and most people believe that it’s acceptable to describe someone’s head as literally exploding when some surprising event occurred.

Only someone sympathetic to the trans cause is going to refer to himself as “cisgendered”. And not all. I’m sympathetic, and I hate the term. It just doesn’t resonate with me. We need something less clinical like “straight”.

But only one of those examples, cisgendered, causes confusion in communication.

Don’t be such a cissy.


Which is certainly a neutral enough term, because if something isn’t “straight”, it is “crooked” or “bent”.

Are there gays who object to the use of “straight”? If there are, could they all fit into a phone booth? Are there even any phone booths for them to fit into anymore?

Only if you wish to stay “confused” once you’ve learned what it means. People learn new words every day.

Or curvy, or sinuous, or any one of many other terms with positive connotations.

I’m totally OK with cisgendered. Like Miller, I was relieved. I hate using the word “normal” and there really isn’t a good word.

Well, some people don’t really have any interest in the subject. I would not use the term simply because I know most people don’t understand it. But, I probably wouldn’t have more than one or two opportunities in a year when I would find it useful anyway.

“Oh, pangender…”
“Oh, cisgender…”