By Cate Monteiro
Manager of Services and Supports
Kerry’s Place Autism Services

In my experience, I have found normalizing conversations of gender identity and pronouns to be a fundamental component of building an open and authentic rapport with those accessing services. I remember one individual, whom was very hesitant to be involved with the supports offered. We started talking about ourselves and I introduced myself as a gender-neutral person, who uses they/them pronouns.

I saw an instant switch in the person’s expression.

They appeared comforted by my disclosure, as they also identified as gender neutral, and their initial hesitation seemed to disappear. This experience reassured me that being out and open about who I was, had made a space for others to feel free to be open about themselves.  It was an unforgettable moment.

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