This is how I’ve learned to introduce myself over the years. It’s not as though I have one of those long, painfully spelled names like “Conchobhar” or “Anegrethe” or even “Toirdhealbhach” (that one’s a Gaelic Irish name.) In fact, my name is literally monosyllabic. However, I generally run into two problems:
1. My name is not spelled phonetically.
2. My name rhymes with everything.
Unlike many Asian-Americans, I don’t have an “American” name that I go by. When my parents named me, they specifically wanted to give my sister and I Vietnamese names that Americans can pronounce. Thus: I’m “Vy,” and my sister is “Lynn.” (The English form of the Vietnamese “Linh.”) My middle name was originally intended to be “Quynh,” but my mom deemed that too complicated.
For all my quips and qualms, however, I like my name. It’s what I’m used to, and I wouldn’t change it to anything else. When asked,
After all, a name is your identity. What you respond to. A part of who you are. Maybe I just lack the imagination to see myself being called by a different name. But for me, Vy is here to stay. Anyone else have stories of mispronounced names? I’m sure they’re fairly common.