Editor’s Note: Yeah, yeah, yeah … I know, I have to answer Amy’s Press Conference Question 8 – Part Dos yet, but this was a question that Karen posed in a comment a few posts ago and I started answering the comment but it sort of grew into a long answer, which I decided would make a decent post since I thought others might have the same question and my spewage might get lost in the comment to an unrelated post, or that others might have something good to add from their own experiences and they would miss the question if it was buried in another post. So that’s why I’m answering questioooons like this out of order and making this comment its own post … commence kicking my ass !!! 🙂
Got a question for ya. In any situation you may find yourself and someone local to you shouts out your old name “hey Joe” quite innocently maybe addressing another person entirely, does that get any response from you now. Maybe turns your head or something. I have been full time for only 10 months but I feel I’ll never get rid of that automatic flinch response.
Karen !!!! 🙂
Wow !!! That’s a super questioooon !!! A phreaking good question !!! I totally know exactly what you are talking about … thanks for asking it.
I too felt that I might never stop having that automatic head turn whenever I would be out & about and hear Joe’s name being called out to someone other than me … I was so phreaking paranoid that I was outing myself by appearing to respond to a guy’s name in those situations … I hated it.
It was so automatic, I just couldn’t consciously catch myself in time to stop the unconscious response gleamed from a lifetime of being called Joe. In response to this, as soon as my conscious would realize what the hell I just did, I developed this “look around to appear to see who they were calling” move, sort of to suggest I was looking to see who was calling out for Joe and then looking to see who they were addressing. I sort of figured that it was better to appear interested in things I didn’t have any need to be interested in than to appear to be responding to a guy’s name. (Ummmmmmm and for those that don’t know, my real boy name was not Joe, because if it was, it could easily have been Jo, which would have been a good reason for why I responded to the name-shout-out. But since my real boy name was definitely a guy’s name, responding to it was simply odd.)
Just the opposite also occurred when getting used to responding to name-shout-outs for Amy. For a long time I had to consciously recognize the name being called out, make the connection that it was now my name, and then respond. There was definitely a delay, just ask Sister and Miss Daisy. I remember more than once where one of them would suddenly be right in my face screaming “HEY AMY !” because I just wasn’t responding. (It was usually followed by a “Geezuz girl, we’ve got to get you used to your new name ” ! 🙂 )
The good news is that yes, there does come a time when there will be a name-shout-out for your old name and it won’t even garner the slightest flinch from you in response. I’m not sure how long it took me because I think those name-shout-outs just stopped registering. Your question is very topical though because last week I noticed this very thing … there was sort of a delayed response to me hearing Joe’s name called out … I was a good half-dozen steps away from when I first heard the name-shout-out before I realized it didn’t even register. I was like “Sweet ! ” 🙂 (Now those of you in my real life, don’t go trying to test how well I don’t respond to my old name now … it could totally screw me up !!! 🙂 ) I’ve been fulltime now for just a bit over 2 years, so if I had to make a guess, I’d say it’s somewhere between 15 months and 26 months when it started to become unautomatic for me to respond to Joe.
On an unrelated note though, in addition to Amy , I also now automatically respond to:
- Amy-wan (more of my friends than you might imagine actually call me this quite often, which is totally kewl with me … me like ! :));
- A or AMP (the guys at the office usually call me this);
- Umbrella (Baby Brother calls me this quite a bit … he started it to tease me because it was a while before he realized that my legal name is actually Amelia, so to mock Amelia in the taunting ways only baby brothers can do, he started calling me Umbrella. Though in the taunting ways only big sisters can do, I’ve got more people than I’m sure he’d like calling him “Baby now, which is short for Baby Brother. We’ve actually incorporated the whole Umbrella name now into a story as to why I go by Amy when my name is actually Amelia … we tell people I started going by Amy because when Baby Brother was a baby he couldn’t say Amelia, so we started calling me Amy because we thought he could say that, though he just kept calling me Umbrella and others just kept calling me Amy.
- Aims or Aim (A lot of people call me one of these. I really like it. The informality of it makes me feel like the person calling me it considers me a halfway decent person, maybe even a friend. It’s a good feeling.)
- Hey Bitch (Some of my guy friends call me this on occasion. I’m really not bothered by it, because when they call me it, it’s usually very fitting.)
- Amy Marie (My dad calls me this all the time).
Want to totally engage in a surreal mindphuck ???
Go out with a guy who has your old name !!!