Siobhan Curious, who teaches at the Canadian equivalent of community college, is facing a Pronoun Problem. She doesn’t know the gender identity of a student.
“My first impression from the student’s online ID picture: woman,” she writes. “My (not immediately conscious) impression from our first classroom encounter: very pretty gay man. My impression after 10 minutes of 1-on-1 conversation in my office: no idea. Maybe a very boyish transgender woman?”
The student’s name doesn’t help matters. Curious foresees pronoun issues. “Do I ask? If so, how do I ask?”