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To really hate having such an unusual name?

(152 Posts)
Oddnameout Sun 15-Feb-15 16:17:10

Okay - this is long and ranty and probably a bit woe-is-me but here goes.

My name is very unusual. I have never met anyone else with it. A lot of people struggle to pronounce it, laugh at it, say it repeatedly in a silly voice, say a different name altogether. I'm sure you get the picture!

All that is harder than it sounds. I often dread having to introduce myself because of the above.

But the worst thing is that I'm not awarded any anonymity at all. Some examples I can think of are:

Unsuccessful interviews are remembered because of my name. If I apply to the company in the future my name is recalled.

Google searches; the first two pages of Google are all me.

I rang the Samaritans once due to depression. I was asked my name. I gave a different one on the off chance I knew the lady but she constantly used it and it became jarring and off putting.

I don't want to change it; I would feel like an idiot saying to all my friends 'from now on call me sophie' or whatever.

But - aibu to be fed up? Or am I over-reacting?

tiggytape Sun 15-Feb-15 16:20:17

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Alisvolatpropiis Sun 15-Feb-15 16:22:41


It is ridiculous that adults react in such a way to your name.

I am of course dying to know what your name is! grin

But no more expect you to share it than I would be expected to share mine.

WishICouldBeLikeTheCoolKids Sun 15-Feb-15 16:23:28

I don't have an usual name, but it's an unusual spelling and I get called about 3 different names.

It's ridiculously frustrating. Especially when I have to say repeated, no actually my name is ....

I had one woman call me the wrong name for 2 weeks, I corrected her every time, then the one time I got a little bit snappy about it she seemed offended confused

Could you use a nickname? Can you name be shortened?

WishICouldBeLikeTheCoolKids Sun 15-Feb-15 16:23:35

*Can your

tobysmum77 Sun 15-Feb-15 16:25:08

I've got a extremely common first and surnames. The opposite is true for me, no issues with pronouncing it correctly but lots of confusion with the others.

So yabu I think, apart from people being rude.

Oddnameout Sun 15-Feb-15 16:27:25

There aren't any nicknames really: the only shortened form is a word in its own right - like shortening April would make Ape.

I utterly loathe the 'Anglican' version of my name! grin Not because it is English but it is just such a jarring word. I'm white British by the way: just have a name from a different culture.

whattheholyfeck Sun 15-Feb-15 16:29:23

I have an unusual name. I don't hate it, I embrace it. People get it wrong and I use it as an excuse for a giggle. It's an ice breaker and conversation starter.

fluffyraggies Sun 15-Feb-15 16:29:24

If you don't want to live with it, you will have to just change it, really. A few weeks persisting in getting your friends to respect your name change is worth it compared to the rest of your life being pissed off.

What is it please? grin

And, out of interest, is it a traditional family name passed down, or just a whim from your parents when you were born?

kawliga Sun 15-Feb-15 16:30:02

YANBU to be fed up, and you're not overreacting.

Is there anything at all that brings warm thoughts about your name e.g. why did your parents name you it? I guess they must have thought it would be a great idea for some good reason? I knew someone called Precious, and you can't imagine the jokes and flabbergasted reactions 'what, Precious? is your name really Precious?' it was awful. But at least she had a constant reminder that her parents thought her that precious.

whattheholyfeck Sun 15-Feb-15 16:30:42

...and I'm dying to know what it is! Do share. Maybe we can help grin

kawliga Sun 15-Feb-15 16:31:57

OP can't tell us her name now, as we know that the first two pages on google are about her!

NoArmaniNoPunani Sun 15-Feb-15 16:31:59

What is it? Any adult who laughs at someone else's name is a twat

tiggytape Sun 15-Feb-15 16:32:42

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Oddnameout Sun 15-Feb-15 16:33:17

Whim of my parents - my mother really!

whatthe I normally have a great sense of humour but honestly 32 years later I've had enough ice broken to satisfy the titanic! I think I'd find it less annoying if people got it wrong once but as it is I'm always having to say no - no - no!

I think because it is so unusual I barely need a surname - so when people laugh and refuse to take it seriously it feels as if they are laughing at me; I recognise that is my issue though.

MrsTerryPratchett Sun 15-Feb-15 16:34:20

My DB has the same issue. Unspellable, unpronounceable name. Poor bugger. And, he's very shy to boot. He called himself David for many years.

GoringBit Sun 15-Feb-15 16:35:21

I hear you, OP, I have an unusual surname, though I've not had to deal with the very rude responses that you have. And of course, it's an incredibly personal thing, so when people are rude or get it repeatedly wrong, it can hurt your feelings.

You mentioned Samaritans - when I was one, some volunteers used a different name if theirs was unusual or memorable. I know you don't want to change your name, but could you do it for work and the suchlike, and keep your given name for family and friends?

If you decide not to change, you'll just have to deal with people's reactions, I'm afraid, and try to educate them (for want of a better word) as you go along.

seaoflove Sun 15-Feb-15 16:35:26

Why not change it? A colleague of mine came back to work in the New Year several years ago saying "My name is now X" and it was totally fine. It took a little while for everyone to get used to the new name (and she didn't mind if people called her her old name) but before long it was second nature. It's never too late to change if you really hate it.

FiveHoursSleep Sun 15-Feb-15 16:35:31

I have the same problem with my name. My mother made it up and I've never thanked her for it. I was not born in the UK, so no one ever pronounces it 'right' either.
I've shortened it to something slightly more familiar but this also causes problems as it sounds like a boy's name.
My kids all have very mainstream names.

kawliga Sun 15-Feb-15 16:36:02

Adults do laugh at names, make obvious jokes about it, and what's more they think they're the first person ever to have noticed that the name is unusual.

Chchchchanging Sun 15-Feb-15 16:36:10

Drop this onto the baby name forum so all the parents worried about 'saddling' their baby with a top 10 name actually isn't a terrible thing!!

fluffyraggies Sun 15-Feb-15 16:36:44

What about your second name? If you have one. Could you begin to use that instead? Although that is the same as a proper name change, thinking about it. As you'll still have to go through the 'teething period' of getting those who already know you to call you something different.

Seriously though, OP, if you are that fed up it is worth the effort to change. It's an easy process.

whattheholyfeck Sun 15-Feb-15 16:38:56

I work with someone (it's been 4 years now) who still to this day gets my name wrong. I've stopped correcting him, and while it's very annoying, it's become a joke on him now, and everyone laughs at HIM.

For what it's worth I think it's really cruel for grown adults to laugh at your name. Are you sure you aren't taking their laughter the wrong way? Maybe they are laughing nervously because they have such trouble remembering or pronouncing it?

HighwayDragon Sun 15-Feb-15 16:39:33

I changed my name for this reason, people still call me my "birth" name but it's taken a lot of anxiety away.

kawliga Sun 15-Feb-15 16:40:38

I know some people with very long, complicated names who just change it to something short that has vaguely one of the sounds from the longer name in it.

This is a good idea. But sometimes it causes more problems. 'My name is Zcoieyr Xehfeiofj Pzeijf but you can call me Harry'. Huh?

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