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Get Your Brain Out Of The Binary

, , , , , , , | Working | May 23, 2022

Our manager retired recently, and a new manager was assigned to take her place. On his first day, he tries to meet with everyone, but it’s apparent that he’s doing so more to learn faces than to build connections, and he’s not putting in any effort to be friendly. Still, I decide to put up with him at first, knowing everyone else well enough to at least direct him when he’s looking for someone.

[Coworker], who is non-binary, is on holiday at this time (approved well in advance), which leads to this exchange when [Manager] goes looking for them.

Manager: “Hey, [My Name]. Where could I find [Coworker’s Full Name]?”

Me: “They’re on holiday today. Sorry, I should’ve mentioned—”

Manager: “They? It’s just the one.”

Me: “I know. They’re on holiday.”

Manager: “Who’s ‘they’?”

Me: “[Coworker].”

Manager: “Then don’t say ‘they’! Is it a him or a her?”

Me: “[Coworker] goes by ‘they’.”

Manager: “That’s not a valid answer.”

Me: “It’s not a valid question. [Coworker] goes by ‘they’. When you’re talking about [Coworker], you say, ‘They are on holiday,’ or, ‘They’ll be back tomorrow.’”

Manager: “Who the h*** are they?!”

Me: “[Coworker].”

[Manager] wrote me up for giving him attitude. I immediately informed his boss as to what was going on. By the time [Coworker] got back, we had another new manager.

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