For many, Demi Lovato was one of the first artists to openly use “they/them” pronouns and identify as non-binary. And Lovato’s decision to change her pronouns, after being hyper-feminized as a teen star on Disney Channel, catalyzed discussions about gender identity and pronouns. Some of those conversations often diminished Lovato’s gender identity as the butt of a joke, complete with a blatant disdain for their fluidity.
In a recent interview on the Spout podcast, Lovato explained to host Tamara Dhia the usage of their pronouns, saying that she’s actually adopted she/her pronouns once again.
“For me, I’m such a fluid person when it comes to my gender, my sexuality, my music,” she said, later adding, “Especially last year, my energy was balanced in my masculine and feminine energy. When I was faced with the choice of walking into a bathroom and it said ‘women’ and ‘men,’ I didn’t feel like there was a bathroom for me. I didn’t feel necessarily like a woman. I didn’t feel like a man. I just felt like a human.”
“And that’s what they/them is about for me. It’s just about feeling human at your core,” she added. “Recently, I’ve been feeling more feminine, and so I’ve adopted she/her again.”
The conversation with Dhia comes more than a year after she came out as non-binary. Since then, several other musicians like Lil Uzi Vert have revealed they prefer they/them pronouns as well.
At the time of her they/them pronoun change last year, Lovato said she felt the pronouns “best represents the fluidity I feel in my gender expression and allows me to feel most authentic and true to the person I both know I am and am still discovering.”
The key aspect of Lovato’s statement at the time was that she was “still discovering” the intricacies of her identity and fluidity. Gender identity is a spectrum and people’s connection with specific pronouns and labels can change over time.
On the recent podcast, Lovato added, “I think what’s important is [that] nobody’s perfect. Everyone messes up pronouns at some point, and especially when people are learning. It’s just all about respect.”
The interview with Spout comes ahead of the release of Lovato’s Holy Fvck on Aug. 19, following the release of her singles “Skin of My Teeth” and “Substance.”
“I would say it’s a new era. I’m ever-evolving, ever-changing. I’d like to put the rest of my music behind me and start fresh in this new era for this next album — but I do that every album cycle,” Lovato told Rolling Stone earlier this year. “It’s a new era reminiscent of my first era.”