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Trans' Names

(25 Posts)
PinkIndustry Wed 04-May-16 00:33:15

I know this is hardly the most pressing issue in the whole trans debate but nevertheless, humour me......... In light of so many transwomen feeling no need to look particularly like a woman (I suppose I am thinking of the thread about Danielle Muscato, in particular) - ie they have beards and penises etc, it seems strange that the one thing which they all have in common is that they have changed their names to names that are normally for women. If a man can 'feel like a woman', despite having a beard, a penis, being tall and muscular etc, then why can't he also 'feel like a woman' and, therefore, 'be' a woman whilst being called Dave or John??

Also, as has been noticed before, it's interesting that many transwomen seem to choose names that are associated with younger women or women's names that have been coined relatively recently such as Kellie, Caitlyn, Danielle, Nikki, Brittany etc I haven't heard of any Barbaras, Susans, Margarets.

I wonder if it is the same for transmen? Do they call themselves David, George, Frank? Or have they all become Connor, Reece, Ryan or Ollie? It would be interesting to do a study on transwomen's and transmen's name choices relative to their age and the popularity of the chosen name at the time of their birth.

But, anyway, my main point is - why do transpeople have to change their names at all, if they don't have to change anything else?

LassWiTheDelicateAir Wed 04-May-16 06:51:06

I'm not sure all the names are associated with younger women or are recently coined. Kellie Maloney is 6 years older than me. There were girls called Kelly/Kellie at my school.

Caitlin clearly isn't a new name although the spelling "Caitlyn " might be.

SoGodhelpme Wed 04-May-16 07:01:28

I suppose a name is very psychological. Being called 'Dave' all the time, will remind you always that you're really a man. I really feel sorry for transpeople, I'm not sure how they can find peace, but surgically modifying their body is not the answer. First time DS11 saw Caitlyn on tele he screamed! He said said she was the ugliest thing he'd ever seen, and didn't look anything like a woman.

This was at the height on Caitlyn's new look when everyone was saying she was beautiful.

OfCrayonBorn Wed 04-May-16 07:01:42

I can only think of Justin Dennis.

I suppose it's very closely linked to pronouns, how a tw wishes to be talked about.

ifigoup Wed 04-May-16 07:08:30

Perhaps the difference is between celebrities / those in the public eye, and actual real transpeople getting on with their ordinary lives. I know trans women aged 50+ called Carol, Elaine, Christine, Sue and, yes, Barbara - these seem like perfectly typical names for women of their generation. I know younger ones called Rachel, Rosie, and Tessa.

I also know trans men in their 30s and 40s called John, Justin, Matt, and Cameron - again, not names I'd consider generationally unusual.

But then perhaps not many MNers know many actual trans people.

JasperDamerel Wed 04-May-16 07:11:01

Naming comes in trends. If I were to have to create a new female name for myself, I would be more likely to choose a name which doesn't sound dated. Having said that, my friends who are my age and trans women do have similar names to my school friends: Rachael, Melanie, Zoe etc.

dailymailphequers Wed 04-May-16 07:14:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TrojanWhore Wed 04-May-16 07:15:11

I think Hayley on Corrie would have been totally miserable if called Harold (indeed, one character used her birth name as a stick to bully her).

JillyTheDependableBoot Wed 04-May-16 08:24:00

I've worked with two transwomen and they were both called Roxanne hmm

LovingLuna Wed 04-May-16 08:28:37

The retired trans women that still plays golf at the same golf club as my SF is named Sally, previously known as Jim.

Muttaburrasaurus Wed 04-May-16 08:47:48

I know plenty with age appropriate names. I do know one who kept his male sounding name although this was over 30 years ago now. He also detransitioned later too 'as skirts were too flappy' and the WI women did not let him join their group. This was long before any of the current gender politics stuff and I often wonder what he would have made of it all. I think he was upset by the exclusion from the WI and I confess we all thought they were a bit mean at the time but he certainly wasnt as outraged, mortally offended or driven to feeling suicidal by the exclusion as todays trans activist say they are.

cleaty Wed 04-May-16 09:12:04

I have met lots of Trans people. Lots of the M2Fs have very "sexy" sounding names. The F2M tend to have common male names.

SilverBirchWithout Wed 04-May-16 11:44:34

Now I'm wondering about the idea of 'sexy-sounding' female names, what they are and are there any equivalent 'sexy' male names?

Is this yet another gender politics question? Can certain women's names indicate you may more likely 'be up for it' than others?

GirlSailor Wed 04-May-16 12:28:24

The transmen I know have chosen young names but they are young themselves. One already had a unisex name but chose to change it. He has a cooler name than his parents would have picked picked but I would expect that from any young people choosing a name for themselves. If they were naming their children they would probably have picked similar names. They probably won't be able to do that now, but they're still young so I don't think that is something they're thinking about.

fortuneandglory Wed 04-May-16 12:30:59

I have known three tws and two of them were called Faye

EBearhug Wed 04-May-16 16:01:28

I know a transwoman called Samantha. My first reaction was, "how dull, half the girls at school were called Samantha!" Then I realised that's probably the point - it is an age-appropriate name in that sense.

FurryDogMother Wed 04-May-16 16:07:31

I know a Kate, a Kerry and an Ann - those seem like fairy common/ordinary names to me.

Lancelottie Wed 04-May-16 16:14:42

I can offer your statistics a William, Robin (MTF, name unchanged) and Rachael.

Bluebolt Wed 04-May-16 17:05:56

If I was to change my name I would go for a much cooler name than I have now. With the exception of DS1 I would probably choose different names for DCs if I was choosing now.

VestalVirgin Fri 06-May-16 19:05:21

The author Simone Borowiak became Simon Borowiak. Not much change, there. So there are definitely transmen who don't really want to change their names that much. (I don't know if Simon passes as male, but I suppose in that case it would be more convenient to have a name that fits the sex one is perceived to be.)

emwithme Fri 06-May-16 20:27:47

MTF - was Steve, now Ella but appropriate given age (mid-late 30s).
FTM - gone for something that's fashionable now rather than 25 years ago. Don't know what their previous name was but now known by initials
FTM - gone for male version of previous female name. A bit rarer than the female version, but nothing to write home about (Victoria to Victor)
FT"GenderQueer" with the fucking capital letter in the middle and no space if you please Gone for male version of nickname but without changing pronunciation (Ellie to Eli but still pronounced like Ellie)

Kidnapped Fri 06-May-16 20:46:14

It's interesting.

When Bruce Jenner announced the new name, it immediately struck me that Caitlyn is really an 80 or 90s baby name in the US. And Bruce Jenner was born in 1949.

Link here

It was practically unheard of when Bruce was born in the US. And Caitlin is similar (only started popularity in the 70s, 80s, and 90s).

The top 5 names for girls in the year he was born were Linda, Mary, Patricia, Barbara, Susan.


Seems he decided to knock at least 30 years off his name at the same time.

LassWiTheDelicateAir Fri 06-May-16 21:00:48

The only American "Caitlin" I can think of was the character Caitlin Bree in Kevin Smith's film Clerks. It was made in 1994 and the character would have been around 25 at most.

MyNewBearTotoro Fri 06-May-16 21:22:03

I know two Transwomen, both who have transitioned in last 5 years. Tom (in early 20s at start of transition) became Lara and Steve (in 50s at start of transition) became Sally.

I also have a school friend who was previously called Laura Taylor-Smith* but has decided they don't identify as either male or female and has changed name to simply Taylor Smith and wishes to be referred to by the pronouns they/ their etc.

*not real name!

Polidori Sun 08-May-16 20:31:44

I suppose a name is very psychological. Being called 'Dave' all the time, will remind you always that you're really a man.

Won't having bollocks and a beard do that?

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