Am I selfish for getting my name legally changed? I finally can afford to get my name changed and it feels like a dream. I've tried talking to my family about it on multiple occasions (mostly my mother) she told me that I'm selfish and I'm only thinking about myself and that it's wrong. I've wanted this my entire life, but I can't help feeling guilty about it.
It’s your name and your life, do what you need to make yourself comfortable in your own skin. I’m sorry people call you selfish, I hope they can learn to accept your journey
While you certainly don’t owe it to anyone, it sounds like your mother’s feelings matter to you. I would initiate a more serious conversation with her about her feelings and express to her that you care about them and don’t mean to hurt her. Just to give her an opportunity to hopefully more skillfully process and express her feelings. Ultimately, that doesn’t sound like a reason not to change your name. But I would attempt to take steps to repair any damage your mother might feel has been done. Not every decision you make in life has to be dictated by the feelings of others (duh) but more specifically, you can make a decision in favor of what you want even after considering how it may affect others. Sometimes there are sacrifices we are willing to make for our loved ones, but sometimes we can do things just for us.
If your mom manages to keep the conversation fair and on track, attempting to hear and validate her feelings might help her let go a little.
You are not selfish at all!! I just personally don't understand why your mother would be *this* upset. When you take away your birth name, you're still the same person, still the same child, and still your mom's kid.
no way! it's your life!!
I briefly changed my name (tried it out socially before legally doing it but decided it wasn't for me) and my mother was on the fence about it. More often then not (good) mother's want to protect their kids and are apprehensive because they see how this could possibly lead to hardship in some type of way, most likely socially. Either way having a calm, validating conversation (if your mother can be rational) with them is what is best. If they don't end up being constructive do what is best for you, but validating emotions is the best way to try and keep things civil
I get the guilt that her statement brings up, but the fact is it IS YOUR life, it is about YOU period as you're the one carrying the name and having the name
I once read somewhere that a name is a gift your parents give to you. But people outgrow gifts, no matter what kind. No one is going to force a 20 year old to play with a toy they got when they were 7. Your name is the same. You are allowed to outgrow it and find something that fits better.
That said, have a respectful conversation with her. Come to the table with reasons/explanations that are phrased in a way she can understand and/or relate to. Don't spring it on her. Give her a little notice (if anxiety is an issue for you, 10-15 minutes would be enough) so she can calm down and collect her own thoughts. Springing intense conversations on people can put them on the defensive which makes a calm conversation that much more difficult. Don't interrupt her. I know that can be hard, especially if she's saying hurtful things, intentionally or not. If she interrupts you, gently remind her that she had or will have her own turn to speak interrupted.
In the end, it is your decision, not hers. But getting everything out in the open will at least get everyone on the same page.
One last thing to consider is how much she knows about your name. Does she know what your new name is? Because my mom's issue with my name change was she didn't want me to pick something "weird." (Still not sure what she meant by that.)
I changed my name because I'm trans, so I don't know if that's your reason or if you just dislike your birth name. If it's the first and you plan on changing your middle name as well, some trans people have worked with their parents to pick a name/middle name so the parents feel involved and feel like their opinion on your name does matter. If you're planning on keeping your middle name (if you have one), I know this won't help. Even if you're changing your middle name, you don't have to involve her in that.
In conclusion, you are not being selfish. You are doing something that will make you happy. She needs to accept that and be happy with you. She's not the one who is going to live with that name.
In my opinion, selfishness is putting your wants over someone else's needs. She doesn't need you to keep your birth name. Self-care is not selfishness. And it seems like you've but a lot of thought into this; that's a sign that it's probably the right choice in the long run.
(Sorry for all the jumping around. It's almost 2am.)
☝ This content is generated by our users and it is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision
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