In the past, I’ve talked about my preference for Ms over Mrs and Miss. There’s another honorific I wanted to discuss today: Mx.

How new is Mx?

Mx might seem new to most people, but it was first proposed about 4 decades ago. Originally intended for those who didn’t want to be identified by their gender to avoid gender bias, Mx has been welcomed as a gender-neutral option for non-binary people (such as those who are gender fluid, agender, genderqueer, and so on.

How widespread is Mx?

The usage of Mx has been gaining support in the UK as various governmental agencies have accommodated its presence on various forms and identification, beginning in 2013 with the city council in Brighton and Hove, Sussex. Today, it’s an option on passports, and drivers incenses. Even UK businesses, such as banks, provide it as an option to their customers.

Providing more legitimacy to the term, Merriam-Webster added Mx to their unabridged dictionary last year, and Oxford added it to theirs the year prior.

Outside the UK, it hasn’t met the same widespread acceptance, and such acceptance may be still a few years off. Ms, for example, took about 85 years before it was adopted by the New York Times.

How do you pronounce Mx?

It sounds similar to mix.

How do you use Mx?

Use it the same way you would use Mr or Ms:

  • Dear Mx Jones …
  • May I introduce you to Mx Pat Smith?

Where can I read more about Mx?

Check out these articles on MX, its usage, and what it means to those who use it.

About Kim Siever

I am a copywriter and copyeditor. I blog on writing tips mostly, but I sometimes throw in my thoughts about running a small business. Follow me on Twitter at @hotpepper.

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