Dude, bro, guy, gender neutral?

There’s no doubt that objectively, guy is a gendered term. So is bro, and dude. Just go up to a straight guy and ask him how many dudes he’s slept with. A lot of my friends aren’t bothered by these terms, but it bothers me to be referred to that way.

Communication requires two people. The intention of the speaker matters, but the interpretation by the recipient matters too. The speaker can’t just say “I use guy as a gender-neutral term” and be absolved of all responsibility. Both parties involved in the communication share responsibility for the transfer of information from one person to another, including responsibility for word choice, meaning and interpretation.

Given how many alternatives there are to the word “guy” that have no gendered component at all, and given that it may be misgendering depending on who you say it to, there’s really no justification to continue using it for people you don’t explicitly know are okay with it. Same for dude and bro, feminine leaning equivalents like sis and queen, etc. So please just stop. Thanks!