I haven’t told anyone this yet but my name isn’t actually Tess. It’s a nickname I’ve used since the 6th grade as I found my real name to be too “grown-up” and just too difficult when it came to introducing myself or for someone to spell. When you are in that age all you want is not to stand out and my name did make me do that. Okay this sounds like my name is some weird hippie name like Tessalani or something like that. It’s not.. It’s Theresa.
I bet many of you from the US or the UK is thinking what’s so unusual about that? as it’s a common name in your countries but in Denmark it’s not. I am currently sharing ‘Theresa’ with 744 other women in Denmark while the more popular version ‘Therese‘ is used twice as much . That’s not many when there’s a population of 6 million people.
Therefore I know EXACTLY how it feels when you have to say your name 3-4 times before people get what you’re actually saying. The struggle is real guys and here’s why.
1 // People can’t spell it.
“Yes it’s Theresa with H. No it doesn’t end with an E but an A”.
2 // They pretend it’s something more common.
“Did she say Theresa? She probably didn’t I must have heard wrong. I’ll just call her Therese until she corrects me.”
3 // You have to repeat it several times.
“Hi i’m Theresa.”
“Okay, nice to meet you Therese”
4 // Even people who actually knows your name will still call you something else.
I have worked in the same shop for 5 years and one of my co workers still calls me Therese despite knowing it’s not my name. I gave up correcting her several years ago.
5 // When the secretary at the doctor’s office says your name repeatedly on the phone when telling you you have an embarrassing decease whilst sitting in a room full of other patients.
Yes this happened. Yes it was embarrassing. Yes I am the only in my little town who’s named Theresa.
6 // New people you’ve met like once are afraid of talking to you again because 9/10 times they aren’t sure about what your name actually is and instead of making an awkward situation they just avoid having to say your name
Happens. All. The. Time. Come on people it’s not that difficult!
7 // It’s impossible to find a mug, key ring, card etc with your name on
I cannot stress how many times as a kid I have tried to find SOMETHING with my name on it. Broke my little ‘I-just-wanna-be-like-everybody-else-heart’
8 // Can be difficult to pronounce or to hear what you’re actually saying
In English Theresa is not a problem but in Danish it can be for some people in that way it can sound kinda “hollow”. It’s hard to explain but that’s just how it is. Luckily for me my mom could have chosen other Danish names that are like impossible to pronounce unless you are from Denmark. Can be names like Solvej, Ingeborg, Asta, Agnete and others like that. Old and very popular Danish names but impossible to say correctly if you aren’t from around here.
9 // If your name has a link to something or someone famous.
If only I had a dime for every time I have heard ‘Mother Theresa’ the past 21 years… Kids aren’t the most witty ones. The joke gets old guys.
10 // When your nickname is just as unusual as your first name
These past two weeks where I have presented myself a million times for my new classmates it has gone something like this 90 % of the time
“Hi, I’m Sara”
“Hi Sara, I’m Tess”
“Yeah Tess. My real name is Theresa but everyone calls me Tess”
” .. Just call me Tess”.
11 // When your last name is even more uncommon than your first name
Do I even have to comment about that… This is me in a nutshell.
With all of this being said I do love my name as it makes me unique in my own way. The fact that I am the only in the entire world with my name combination is hella cool and I am happy that my mom chose this name for me. Despite the struggles I meet ever so often. Embrace your name ladies and gentlemen! It’s who you are.
What’s your name? Have you ever experienced any of the above?
Would you like to have another name if you could?
Let me know!