Birth Names and Pronouns



Why are people so interested in knowing trans people’s birth names? It doesn’t define who they are at the stage in life that they are in and they obviously don’t identify with that name anymore so whats the big deal. On multiple occasions from people who obviously never knew my birth name, but know I am trans have confronted me and asked me what my birth name was. I simply just stated that my name is Kayden and if they persisted in knowing my birth name I would tell them it’s none of their business. Because frankly it is not.

Some people refer to their birth name as their dead name. I personally don’t like this verbiage because it has a false connotation that the person is dead when in reality you are still very much alive. The only difference is you are becoming the person you identify with on the inside. Of course its up to each individual person what they want to call their birth name, just personally that doesn’t sit well with me.

Birth names can either be something that is sentimental to someone or just done right disgusted by it. Some people despise their birth name and cringe every time they hear it come out of someones mouth. Personally I don’t have this dilemma with my birth name. My grandparents still use my birth name so it’s a good thing it doesn’t bother me because otherwise I would be in cringe mode all the time considering I spend a ton of time with them. I can understand where people are coming from though when it comes to their birth name. There could be a multitude of reasons why people do not like to hear their birth name; some being they don’t get along with their parents who named them, they don’t identify with the name, people have used it in a malicious act, etc. No matter what your feelings are on your birth name at some point it was the name you went by. The best thing to do when someone uses your birth name is correct them and move on. If they are doing it in a malicious act simply tell them you won’t tolerate that kind of behavior towards you and for them to leave you alone from than on. No one needs people like that in their lives.

Regardless of whether you call the name you were given at birth your birth name or dead name it’s no ones business what it was. The only thing that matters is the name you currently go by. Whether you have changed it 500 times it still is the name you go by and the name that is most important to you and should be just as important to other people. So when people insist on knowing your birth name simply tell them its none of their business and that is not my name now.



Pronouns are very important to trans people and no matter what the pronoun is it’s important for people to use the correct pronoun for each individual. There are a multitude of pronouns out there today so if you are unsure of what someones pronouns are ask them. Some of the pronouns used in today’s society are below:

Nominative (subject) Objective (object) Possessive determiner Possessive Pronoun Reflexive
Traditional pronouns
He He laughed I called him His eyes gleam That is his He likes himself
She She laughed I called her Her eyes gleam That is hers She likes herself
It It laughed I called it Its eyes gleam That is its It likes
They They laughed I called them Their eyes gleam That is theirs They like themselves
Invented pronouns
Ne Ne laughed I called nem Nir eyes gleam That is nirs Ne likes nemself
Ve Ve laughed I called ver Vis eyes gleam That is vis Ve likes verself
Spivak Ey laughed I called em Eir eyes gleam That is eirs Ey likes
Ze (or zie) and hir Ze laughed I called hir Hir eyes gleam That is hirs Ze likes hirself
Ze (or zie) and zir Ze laughed I called zir Zir eyes gleam That is zirs Ze likes zirself
Xe Xe laughed I called xem Xyr eyes gleam That is xyrs Xe likes xemself

Recently I was at a conference and had a lady come up to me and ask me my pronouns. She had known me by my birth name previously but saw my new name on my name tag and knew I was transgender. This made me extremely happy and meant a lot to me. She didn’t just assume what my pronouns or gender was instead she asked out of respect for me and not wanting to screw up my pronouns or name. Of course you are going to get idiots like some I have that will simply ask you or someone else what is it a boy? or girl? This is just plum ignorance on the behalf of these people. This has happened in my workforce and the person ended up being counseled because of this issue. No one should ask anyone like that instead they should ask your name and what pronouns you use. Some trans people overtime tend to change their pronouns and everyone in their lives need to be respectful and change the pronouns they use for them. Sometimes people aren’t sure what pronouns they want to go by in the beginning. For me at times I have wondered if I would be better off going by they/them, but in the long run know that I want to identify as male and want names like Daddy and male pronouns to be used. No matter what pronouns you go by make sure people use the correct pronouns.


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