In a short while I will be legally changing my name – a decision I haven’t taken lightly. Besides trying to explain to everyone my motivation, the most difficult people it will be to break the news to are my parents. As a parent myself, I know what it’s like to decide on your baby’s name. Hours of agony, pouring over baby name books (or in our case websites), discussing it with your partner, realizing all the people you hate, and finally settling on what you decide to be the perfect name, or names if you wait until baby is born. The name you assign your child becomes part of their identity – it’s what they are called by everyone around them, including you. It’s something you give that usually the never discard…. Except in my case.
I’ve always hated my name. It’s never felt like the right fit for me, mostly because it’s a girl’s name. It’s been mine but I’ve never really felt like I owned it. Growing up I was called a variety of nicknames by friends and always preferred to be called that over the one I had been assigned at birth. I swapped over to this name over a year ago and I’m starting to use it more and more. It’s created a lot of discomfort for me – I never know what name to give out and I’m always worried about places asking for my ID. Now when someone calls me by my birth name my skin crawls.
The funny thing about this “chosen” name is it wasn’t really chosen at all. My husband suggested it, I agreed, and it stuck. I do think it’s fitting – far more so than my birth name. It’s short, fits into high score tables, and is a lot less feminine. Actually it’s a guy’s name, which is what I was kind of going for.
My birth name will always represent a time in my life where I wasn’t being true to myself and others. As much as I would like to forget this, it’s still a part of me. I might keep it on as a middle name for that reason, and out of respect to my parents. Until then please respect me. I was never meant to be a girl. I was never meant to have that name. I’m still me, only a version of me who is closer to what I should have been born as.