I'm going to get my 1st name legally changed - any advice?

I’ve hated hated hated my real first name my whole life. I hate the name so bad that I will not speak it. If I have to tell someone what my legal first name is, I spell it for them without pronouncing it (I’d have to spell it for them even if I did pronounce it because it’s a stupid made-up name that no one can spell or pronounce).

I probably would’ve had my name changed sooner, but I wasn’t sure what to change it to since the name I go by does not start with the same letter as my legal name, and I want to keep my initials. Recently I figured out what to change my name to, and tomorrow I’m seeing a lawyer to get the process started.

Has anyone here ever had their first name legally changed? Are you glad/sorry you did it? Do you have any advice for me (issues I may not have considered)? Were your parents upset? (I know that my mother, master of passive aggression, will make me feel guilty the rest of my life. She should feel guilty for slapping that name on me.)

I know a couple of people who have done it themselves (without a lawyer), by copying previously filed name change cases. It is (usually) fairly simple, as legal stuff goes. Will you have to contend with diplomas, transcripts, licenses, etc in the old name? Both of the people I know were pretty young and changed names before they got out of college. Good luck to you, may your new name please you forever and ever. Oh, and IANAL. whew, almost forgot that part.

I had mine changed when I was 8, and adopted. Parents did it. The only advice I have for you is…

I’m ever so glad they did it.

Just wanted to say I plan to change my middle and last names, so I’ll be watching this with interest. :wink:

Am I the only one who is dying to know what her name is?

My sister hates her first name, but she was named after our great-grandmother. If she changed it we would probably disown her. :smiley:

I think we need to know the name before we can properly advise you. :wink:

Well, I’m guessing it’s not “Laina”…

It’s clear she won’t tell us what it is, but maybe she’ll be willing to spell it out.

No, no, no. It’s partially laina. Her full first name is laina_f, and you have to figure out the missing letter. My vote is lainaPf (prounounced lah-EE-nuf). The P is silent. And she’s getting pretty pfucking tired of explaining it.

I’m in a similar situation. My mother made up my name by joining her middle name and her mother’s first name (my middle name is my father’s mother’s first name). It’s a nice thought, I guess, but I’ve never been happy with the result. I usually go by the first half alone, but I’m not crazy about that either, especially when paired with my somewhat unusual last name. It’s just not euphonious.

Unfortunately, I can’t think of a name I’d rather be called (after 43 years, I’ve kind of gotten used to it).

Also, I’m chicken to change it, because I think my mom would be hurt.

I suggest you use “Kimberly”.

Nice, & “Kim” is short & sweet.

read this

If I were to post my legal first name here, it would come close to uniquely identifying me within the U.S.A.
I’ve Googled my legal first name + last name before (no results), but today for the first time, I Googled just the first name. The name appears to be less rare in other languages – I found the name on Spanish, Italian, and German websites. Several streets in the U.S. have the name. A village in Zimbabwe has the name.

In my entire life, I’ve come across one other person with the name, and her story was that her parents were Polish immigrants who were trying to give her a fairly common name, but the nurse wrote down on the birth certificate what she understood the parents, with their heavy accents, to be saying.

My Google search uncovered a 13-yr-old who not only has my first name, but also my sister’s very unusual middle name (which was our grandmother’s name). I’ll bet money that the 13-yr-old is related to me, but her web site was such a mess of fractured grammar, misspelling and LEET speak that I couldn’t bring myself to email her.

Also found: a person with the same name who raises miniature donkeys.

Saddest: a young woman in Alabama with a husband in Iraq. Google turned up their engagement notice, a couple of articles she had written about supporting the troops in Iraq, and, around Google page 10, the husband’s obituary. He was killed in Iraq.

Yes, but what do you think of “Kimberly”? :slight_smile:

It would certainly take my friends and relatives by surprise.

No, I think it’s laina_f. Pronounced leena underscorf. :smiley:

There’s no need to waste your money on a lawyer. You have the right to use whatever name you want, so long as you’re not doing so to commit nefarious deeds. If you need an official record of the name change, call your county or city clerk’s office and ask what you need to do. Usually it’s a matter of filling out a form and you may need to talk to a judge. The conversation usually goes like this:

Judge: Why do you want to change your name?
laina_f: Because I hate it.
Judge: OK.

And you’re all done.

The shortcomings of my SDMB username have already been discussed in this thread.
It includes the beautiful song written for me by Zog_10.

friedo, I want the name change to be very legal and official. In my county name changes are handled by the Chancery Court. I called there, and they require a form, but they don’t give out the forms. I managed to crib a form online, but I have no idea how to schedule a court appearance, so I thought I’d just see see a lawyer. The first visit is a consultation (free, I think) at which she will tell me how much the name change will cost me.

What are the logistics regarding changing your name with the Social Security folks if you do it sans judge?

When Papa Zappa and I got married, I had to go to the SSA office, marriage certificate in hand, to document that I had a legal name change. Otherwise our tax returns would have been totally fouled up, refund delayed, etc. I had to have the actual original certificate, not just fill out a form about the name change.

So, I’d worry that the more impromptu name change would lead to tax problems.

Other than Social Security though, I didn’t have to do anything else special to change my name. e.g. when I changed it with the DMV, I just filled out the form with “Mama Oldname Zappa” instead of “Mama Middlename Oldname”. Nobody blinked.

I changed my first name when I got married. I figured since I was going to get new cards, etc issued with my married surname I may as well ditch the first name that’d bugged me all those years at the same time.

Unlike laina_f, my name wasn’t horrible and I didn’t loathe it - Danielle is actually quite pretty. Still, I just never felt that I ‘fit’ it properly and decided that if I han’t got comfy with it in 26 years of corporeality it wasn’t going to happen. So, I renamed myself and am glad I did.

My family took it in stride and were scarcely bothered at all, particularly after I pointed out that I didn’t expect them to change to calling me by my new name - that it was just a ‘people I meet from this point forward’ kind of deal.

I still firmly believe that ‘Danielle’ belongs on someone petite, dark and slim. There are images the name conjures up, and I’m don’t appear as the visual result of any of them. The only name that could conceivably fit a 6’ fat lass with short spiky hair and rosy cheeks *less * well than ‘Danielle’ would probably be ‘Crystal’. :smiley: