This article was published on July 14th, 2022
We all have our days in the spotlight. We all get to be celebrated for being who we are. For non-binary people it can be difficult to feel included and seen. July 14 is International Non-Binary People’s Day.
As intricate as it may sound, it is not often that we hear about the non-binary people in our society. Yet, the term ‘non-binary’ is one that often stirs up negative connotations and ostracizes and discriminates against a group of people who have been marginalized for centuries. However, this does not mean that they do not exist and that they do not need to be acknowledged.
The world has come of age, and so should we. The days of binary gender roles are long gone; now we live in a world where gender identities are fluid and changeable; where we can be anyone we want to be. Therefore, it is only fitting that we acknowledge them as such.
On July 14, celebrate these amazing individuals for International Non-Binary People’s Day. Here are ways you can get involved, raise awareness, and celebrate.
The International Non-Binary People’s Day is marked annually on July 14th because it is when “non-binary” people get their day in the spotlight, but it’s also a way for allies to show support and solidarity with them. Non-binary people are those who do not identify with the gender binary system. They may identify with a gender, but the gender isn’t necessarily male or female.
It could be between or beyond those two extremes. Non-binary folks can be anyone from trans men and trans women to intersex folks, agender folks, pangender folks, genderqueer folks, transfabulous people, demi-genders, bigender people and more.
Many non-binary youth face harassment and bullying on a daily basis because they fall outside these rigidly defined categories — even though most of them were born that way. In a society that still struggles with accepting and supporting people who don’t fit into the traditional gender binary, it then shows just how much we need to shift our thinking toward more inclusive values.
Far from being an anomaly or a joke, the reality is that non-binary people exist. Yes, they do! And while many people assume that “non-binary” doesn’t mean the same thing as genderfluid or genderqueer, it does — and more than ever, it’s important for us all to hear each other’s stories, support each other in our journeys, and fight together for acceptance.
Today is about celebrating who you are and what makes you unique. It’s about acknowledging how society tries to force us into two boxes that don’t fit us — all under the guise of “tolerance.” But tolerance isn’t real when it comes at the expense of someone else’s identity.
Tolerance means respecting someone else’s right to be themselves without judgement; tolerance means accepting people for who they are without trying to change them; tolerance means seeing past superficial identities into something deeper.
Being non-binary means being yourself in a world that often doesn’t understand or accept that you exist at all. It also means accepting yourself for who you are — even when others may not understand or accept your gender identity. Being non-binary isn’t easy but it’s important work that shouldn’t be underestimated or taken lightly because of the challenges involved in being yourself.
There is no one right way to be non-binary. All people have their own unique identities and experiences, so what works for one person may not work for another. That’s why it’s important to be true to yourself — to follow your heart, listen to your body and mind, and do what feels right for you.
The most important thing about being non-binary is that it means you can live authentically. By authentically living with your identity (and not fitting into any specific box), you can help create a non-binary safe space where people can just be themselves without judgement or discrimination from others.
There are many ways you can do this: through self-love and acceptance; by creating spaces where other non-binary people feel safe; by speaking up against injustices faced by transgender individuals; by sharing stories that inspire us all; and even by simply being kinder than you ever thought possible.
But whatever you choose to do today—whether it’s celebrating International Non-Binary People’s Day or just taking some time out from your day to reflect on how awesome being yourself really is—know that there’s no one else like you. And that’s something to celebrate every day!