How to Choose a New Name (Transgender)

Picking a new name is a hard process that many struggle with. However, after many transgender people come to terms with their identity, they choose a new name to start their "new" life and identity. Here's a guide to help choose that name.


  1. 1
    Take your personality into account. Re-naming yourself can be easier to do if you know what kind of characteristics you have. For example are you shy, or are you loud and out there? Are you into Greek mythology, ancient civilizations, girly girl stuff?
  2. 2
    Look at baby naming websites. These websites are full of different names, and can help you come up with ideas. Try seeing which names were popular during the decade in which you were born.
  3. 3
    Ask your parent(s) what they would have called you.[1] For example, if you're a transgender boy who was assigned female at birth, ask what boy names they were considering. Try involving your closest loved ones and getting their feedback as you choose a new name.
  4. 4
    Try a feminine/masculine version of your given name. This can be easier to remember and get used to for both your loved ones and yourself. Samantha can turn into Sam, Jesse can turn into Jessica, and Elliot can turn into Ellen or Ella.
  5. 5
    Choose a gender neutral name if you're nonbinary. Riley, Taylor, Casey, Kai, Jamie, Avery, Shannon and Quinn are examples of unisex names.[2][3][4]
    • If you want to pass as either male or female, avoid unisex names (or names that sound unisex, such as Gene/Jean). These are more likely to leave people wondering whether you're a boy or a girl.
  6. 6
    Think about what inspires you. Janet Mock chose her name from Janet Jackson. Consider a person who inspires you (musician, artist, activist, relative), a character, or an idea.
  7. 7
    Consider your family and heritage. You may wish to choose a name that embraces your ethnicity or your ancestry. You could also name yourself after someone in your family tree, such as your remarkable great-aunt Elizabeth or great-grandfather Frederic.
  8. 8
    Consider whether you want to change your last name. This can help mark your transition and distance you from online information with your dead name. However, it also is more complicated that way, may come off badly to loved ones, and will make you need to explain why your last name is different from your family's name.[5] Evaluate the benefits and drawbacks, and choose what is best for you.
    • Try taking on a family last name, such as the maiden name of a beloved family member (besides your mother, for security purposes).
  9. 9
    Try out the new names. Sign each potential name as a signature. Say them out loud and hear how they flow. Write down your initials. Consider any nicknames that could result in shortening your name.
    • Consider how easy the name is to spell and pronounce. Will other people be able to get it right? If you're soft-spoken, are people likely to misinterpret you? (for example, mishearing Greg as "Craig")
    • Be aware that some feminine names can be given a boyish nickname (e.g. Alexandra shortening to Alex). If you don't like this, choose a name that can't be shortened this way.[6]
  10. 10
    Get one of your friends to help you practice getting used to your new name and pronouns. This is a big step it takes a while to warm up to a name and if by some chance it doesn't feel right, change it, yes you can do that!
  11. 11
    Don't rush yourself. Choosing a name is a process, and it takes longer for some people than for others. [7] You don't have a deadline, and there is no right or wrong way to choose a name.[8] Give yourself time to play around with different names. You'll find a good name in time.


  • If you are religious, try looking in your religious book for names (e.g. the Bible or Quran).
  • It might take time to get used to your new name.[9] This is okay.

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Categories: Gender Expression