< willowashmaple.xyz

By Willow (willowashmaple.xyz)

Things about my name

June 30, 2024

I think I've been a Willow for about eight years now, and near exclusively so for roughly six. I thought about just going to the courthouse and make it official, since it's a very easy and straight-forward process where I live.

But I decided against it for a rather practical and a thoroughly modern reason: In today's over-connected and over-shared world it is an advantage not to broadcast one's legal name everywhere. The sad state of affairs now is that identity thieves, scammers, and doxxers are plentiful. It's better if strangers online don't know your name if that can be tied to your financial and legal data with ease.

The other thing is, Willow is such a quintessentially nonbinary name - plant names rarely go wrong, if you're writing a novel or a play with nonbinary characters - although that was not on my mind at all back then (rather, I was in my pagan phase - and someone started calling me Willow and it got stuck, maybe because I looked like a willow.).

Every once in a while I think about whether I should just go by one of my middle names that is kind of androgynous (or, at least versions thereof can be), but that would not necessarily address the aforementioned issues (it is still quite easy to infer one's identity from a middle name).


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