Recently, when applying for a new bank card online, I was over the moon to be offered a free-text box that allowed me to enter my preferred title of ‘Mx’.
Despite this, the forms still asked me to select between ‘male’ and ‘female’ genders.
Being unable to self-identify and in fact, having to ‘choose’ a gender that you do not see yourself as, is damaging and hurtful.
It makes us feel as though companies don’t believe in or care about our identity, and neither does the wider mainstream world it represents.
Metro Bank’s move to change this is not just groundbreaking, but also sends a signal to people like me that our identities are taken seriously, and sets a precedent for similar organisations to do the same.
As the first bank in England to allow customers to define themselves as ‘non-binary’, this is certainly a huge step for a community that is not just misunderstood and marginalized, but in fact often invisible.
Similarly, moves by banks including Barclays, HSBC, Halifax, the Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander and Natwest to allow customers to use the title Mx are also extremely impactful.
People forget about the everyday transphobia that trans, and in this case non-binary, people face.
It’s not just about abuse in the street or name-calling in the playground; it’s also the erasure of your identity, presumptions based on how you present and questions that can be both isolating and intrusive.
So thank you, Metro Bank, for taking a stand for the community I’m a part of and for doing the right thing.
Being open on the weekends will now be the second coolest thing I come to know you for.