What’s in a name?

 If I told you that Nené once rewrote the above song but featuring all the things I’m called then it wouldn’t surprise you that I sometimes have issues with my names. Most commonly called Havanah or Chadders… neither of those are legally my name. Anyway, I get a lot of questions about what my name really is and this is made to answer them. However, this post is also forced by a practical issue… with the impending start of university I’m going to have to face the barrage of ‘what are you called?’ yet again.
Most of you here will know me as Havanah. It’s a name that got made up when I was about twelve and comes from my middle name. Since then, it’s been what (most) of my friends call me. It is, however, nothing like my real first name of Bethany. As for what my middle name is… I’m not sharing that information 😉
Chadders comes from my last name and, until recently, it was the name I used when I was online. I now use my full surname for professional things, particularly to do with art, and therefore decided to use it all the time.
The difficulty really arises when people who use different names for me cross paths and confusion reigns. The thing is, for most official things (like college) I choose to use my official name of Bethany. It’s more professional, besides which Havanah is a nick-name. That said, most of my class mates, if they know me outside of classes, will know me as Havanah. Use that in class and confusion really does reign.
So what am I going to do when I start at university? I’m basically going to start trying to filter out my usage of Havanah when interacting with people. I still will use the name, it’s still the name I identify with most, but I’m going to cut down on the occasions when I, for want of a better phrase, shove it down people’s throats. In practical terms, I have put both names on my facebook profile and am going to phase out my signing of messages and posts online. I’m going to introduce myself to people who I meet in an academic setting as Bethany but if you’ve been introduced to me as such please do feel free to use whichever name you want.
This post wasn’t made to moan about life etc. but hopefully to reduce the confusion that always arises. Call me as you will and, as long as I know you’re referring to me, I shall answer you gladly.

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