After literally years of contemplation, I am finally trying to make the leap to calling myself Beck. It is a little scary, perhaps because your name is something that follows you everywhere, people call you by it every day, you introduce yourself as it, you fill it out in forms, see it written on your social media profiles. It seems there is some intimate association with this configuration of letters that you don’t have with other jumbles of letters. It feels vulnerable to change how people refer to you, indeed, how you refer to yourself. It feels like a change in identity even though I believe that changing my name is actually reinforcing my identity.
I still stand by my statement that names are not inherently gendered and it is cultural norms that dictate gender associations with names. My decision to give it a go as Beck is largely due to the current binary gender stereotypes. At this point, I feel the need to have a more neutral name that can be associated with people all along the gender spectrum. It makes me feel more comfortable based on the current culture. It seems silly, only one letter making such a difference but yet removing the last letter of my first name brings me some sort of relief. I feel like it frees me of some invisible baggage so, for now, it feels most right for me.
Thanks for continuing with me on my journey of self discovery by calling me by my preferred name. If you slip up and call me by my old name, don’t feel bad, I often forget myself so I understand that it takes some practice.