The name I was not given
Dominic: A male name of Latin origin, meaning ‘lord’. According to http://www.thinkbabynames.com it is “appropriate for a child born on Sunday, the lord’s day”. A popular name.
Demeyn: old word for demesne, meaning estate, region, territory, domain: legal possession of land as one’s own.
So, combining these two words, I got the meaning Lord of the Manor. It’s a pretty arrogant title, until you apply it to your own body and soul. I wanted desperately to express the fact that my body and mind (the demesne/domain) belonged to me. It’s literally a ‘no man’s land’.
Noone gave me this name, it’s male after all, and I already have my family’s last name, which I must carry around with me for all time. My real name is very common and I have never liked it. I don’t want to hear it, I want to forget it like a lot of other things. I want to toss it into the confines of history.
Wouldn’t it be nice if people could choose for themselves what names they would be called? Names are so important: they are merely a string of letters attached to each other and sounds coming forth from the vocal chords when one speaks, and YET they are so much more than that. A name adds to a person’s charachter and defines who that person IS. When one speaks their name, one inevitably attaches it to the characteristics that a person possesses or is thought to possess.
Names are gendered, and there seems no way around it. That is why it’s so difficult to say one’s real name when one doesn’t identify with it. One either says <I’m Mary>, or Susan, or Hilda or whatnot, <and I am ‘Other’> (for example, neither male or female) and they say <No, your name is betraying you, it’s female, so you must be, too!>
If one says, for example, <Hello, I’m Dominic>, or whatnot, they say <No, your physical appearance betrays you, I can see clearly that you are female, and since your body is such, then you must be, too>.
I bet that if one was to call onself a number to eliminate a gender-specific name, one would still be gendered. Hmmm, what gender do you think this number is? What gender is this colour? What gender is this dish?
People cannot seem to stop themselves, it is their primary obsession in life! With their skewed vision of gender they not only affect their own lives but the quality of life of countless others, …. those who are trying to resist being cornered by gender specifics made up mostly of arbitrary aspects created from the maelstrom, the primeval ever-lastingly boiling, stinking soup, of the gender binary (domination and hegemonic behaviour).
So now, when people ask my name, it’s very important to me to answer truthfully; I understand that just by saying this word, I will have made a first impression and will have given them information about myself that they will use to try and squeeze me into a tiny little cardboard box (that has my name on it).
When people ask that I introduce myself and want to know :Who are YOU?: I avoid saying my name, and instead would like to tell them who I am.