June 27, 2010

Keeping my name

June 27, 2010 - Categories: Uncategorized

Sacha Chua. It’s hard to pronounce, hard to spell, and frequently changed into Sacha Chau, Sacha Chu, or Sasha, or Sascha, or even the occasional Sachua.

But it’s my name, and I’m keeping it when I get married in two months.

I’ve published a lot as Sacha Chua: articles, papers, blog posts, open source code… If I change my name, it will be harder for people to make that connection. It helps that I’m the only Sacha Chua on the Net (at least, according to Google). There’s already a Sacha Y-.

It’s a lot of paperwork to change my name and update all my records. I don’t see why the woman should be the only one who traditionally goes through all that fuss. ;) I don’t want to always carry marriage documents to justify my name change. For example, the entry form for Singapore asks if you’ve ever entered the country under a different name, and to provide supporting documents if you have. It’s easier if I keep my name.

I like my name. It’s a small reminder of the diversity of this world. If anything, it would be cooler if it was even more Filipino. (For example, Kidlat Tahimik has a really cool name.)

Keeping my name means taking one small step towards greater equity. =) Isn’t it fantastic that I can consider this choice? Likewise, I’ll probably keep Ms. instead of Mrs. if people insist on courtesy titles. (Why isn’t there a male equivalent of that?)

There are worst-case scenarios to think about, too. If we split up, I’d rather not have to go through the fuss of changing my name again.

Will people be confused? Maybe. But my friends Joey de Villa and Wendy Koslow are doing fine, as are Michael McGuffin and Alice Servera.

Will I get addressed as Mrs. Y-? Maybe. But it’s a good opportunity to say, “It’s Sacha Chua, actually. Ms., if you insist.”

Will W- get addressed as Mr. Chua? Maybe. That’ll probably be amusing. <laugh>

Many people change their name, and it works out for them. That’s great. =) Me, I’m keeping mine.