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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    15

    Name change? Too late?

    Hey! I'm 23 and I really dislike my first name. For a long time I wanted to change but or at least change the spelling (which is what i hate the most) but I'm beyond that. Too late. At this point in my life that would not work not to mention how offended my parents would be. However, I am going to Boston for an internship over the summer and I was wondering if I could introduce myself by my middle name. Do you think it would catch on? How should I explain that even though all my forms, papers, etc say my first name that I like to go by my middle name?

    My name is Yohanis Leonor. Yohanis is pronounced as (Jo-Ann-is). I do not particularly love it but what really annoys me is the spelling. My parents (we are hispanic and in spanish the Y sounds as a J) basically liked the name Johanna and "adjusted it" so that it would be unique. All my life I have dealt with people not being able to spell it, much less pronounce it and I have always wanted a normal name!

    What do you think?

    I'm definitely NOT going to torture my baby girl this way!

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    614

    Re: Name change? Too late?

    Quote Originally Posted by leonor
    Hey! I'm 23 and I really dislike my first name. For a long time I wanted to change but or at least change the spelling (which is what i hate the most) but I'm beyond that. Too late. At this point in my life that would not work not to mention how offended my parents would be. However, I am going to Boston for an internship over the summer and I was wondering if I could introduce myself by my middle name. Do you think it would catch on? How should I explain that even though all my forms, papers, etc say my first name that I like to go by my middle name?

    My name is Yohanis Leonor. Yohanis is pronounced as (Jo-Ann-is). I do not particularly love it but what really annoys me is the spelling. My parents (we are hispanic and in spanish the Y sounds as a J) basically liked the name Johanna and "adjusted it" so that it would be unique. All my life I have dealt with people not being able to spell it, much less pronounce it and I have always wanted a normal name!

    What do you think?

    I'm definitely NOT going to torture my baby girl this way!


    I think you should do whatever you feel comfortable with. For your internship, I would go by your legal name, paperwork wise of course, and if you want, give them a nickname - can be your mn or actual nn. :)

    Changing your name legally - it's a big step, mentally, but if you feel you want to do it, then you should. It's not worth hating/disliking a name you have to live with for the rest of your life. But not sure if that would impact the validity of your degree with the name change... IF that is something you are looking into. Just a FYI, Name Berry just did a blog about Fred and the person they used for the subject talked about hating his name... you should prob check it out to see how's he's lived with it.

    Good luck!!

    And I know it can be hard, I'm Mexican, but my parents gave us American names so we wouldn't have that problem!

    And being from Boston - I hope you LOVE it as much as I do!!

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    6,076

    Re: Name change? Too late?

    I think you can go by your middle name if you'd like to, for sure! Sometimes on forms and paperwork there is a spot for your name and then a spot for your "preferred" name, which is where you'd write your middle name or whatever you wanted to go by. For example, I knew a girl named "Catherine Anastasia," but she went by "Stacy," so that would be her preferred name. When bringing it up around others or introducing yourself, I'd just say (for example) something along the lines of, "Hi, I'm Joanna Martin, but I go by Lucy, my middle name." People shouldn't have a problem with that...

    Another thing - have you considered actually changing your name to Johanna, or do you think your parents would be offended by altering the spelling, too?

    Lemon :-)
    "Names, once they are in common use, quickly become mere sounds, their etymology being buried, like so many of the earth's marvels, beneath the dust of habit." - Salman Rushdie

    Boy Combinations: Archer Solomon James, Ronan Charles Bennett, Everett Hawthorn Thomas
    Girl Combinations: Phoebe Marietta Pearl, Clara Daphne Eloise
    Other Favorites: Eliza (Eliza Wren), Juliet, Rosanna, Thea, Johanna, Jude

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    250

    Re: Name change? Too late?

    Oh, Leonor, I feel for you. I remember reading your post on the blog about how much you dislike your name. You see, my parents also named me one of those Y names inspired by that unfortunate fad, a name that NO ONE in the US can pronounce or spell correctly. It's very similar to one of the examples you gave in your post.

    Yes, use your middle name -- it's gorgeous! It reminds me of the Infanta Leonor, future queen of Spain, and Eleanor of Aquitaine. If anyone asks why you prefer to go by your middle name, smile and reply, "My first name is Yohanis. Try getting the clerks at DMV to pronounce that properly. You'd go by Leonor too."

    You're young, only 23. If you want to change it, GO FOR IT!! Do it before the paper trail gets longer and more complex. Please don't do what I did. I was afraid of changing mine for fear of offending my parents. You know what I've learned? It's your life and they're not walking in your shoes. They can call you whatever they want but you have the right to have a name that doesn't make you cringe every time the secretary at the doctor's office mangles it. Please don't make my mistake. I can't do anything about my name now that I'm 39 years old and it appears on two degrees, professional certification, marriage certificate, daughters' birth certificates and baptism certificates, passport, etc. etc. etc.

    If you don't want to change it, then start to introduce yourself as Leonor. Sign Leonor ___ or Y. Leonor _____. It's not weird at all. I recently reconnected via Facebook with a woman I knew in high school. She's Korean-American and has (had?) a very Korean name. She sent me a friend request and stated simply "I now go by (short, simple English name)." No drama, no issues. People cannot, must not, will not question your decision (except, of course, family but they're not the ones stumbling over your name at job interviews).

    Congratulations on your internship, Leonor. Leonor, Leonor, Leonor.

  5. #9
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    15

    Re: Name change? Too late?

    Thanks for the ideas and for understanding my pain!!

    I doubt I will change it but I probably will try to start going by my middle name more often. I've lived in the same place my whole life, went to college at home and now to Medical School pretty close to home also. I feel like I've been running in the same circle of people my whole life and if I change it its going to be weird. But for the future I would consider at least spelling it with a J or something (like say, I decide to do my residency in the States).

    Sometime in high school some of my friends started calling me Annie and it has stuck for people who met me AS Annie/Ani(like my boyfriend's parents for example) but not with people who have called me by my first name my whole life. So maybe in my internship since its a fresh start then I can go by Leonor or Annie. Yay I'm excited!

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