My Name Is Hard To Pronounce – I’m Cool With It *smiley face*

I’ve always had this problem with my name. I’m Asian, Filipino to be exact, and we are (Asians) known for really hard sounding names. My family/last name is sooo hard to pronounce that even Filipinos have a hard time pronouncing it. My family/last name get so butchered all the time that I would just ask them, politely, to not even try and just refer to me as “R” – Argh (which is the first letter of my family/last name). 

I was born in the late 80’s and by then Filipinos have mainly used American (or European) names to name their kids. It does sound weird when you have a Filipino girl who’s name is like Catherine Rose (just a random example), which sounds very American and have a last name of de Makatarungan. The Filipino language (Tagalog) comprises of words that have a very hard pronunciation. You read it as you see it (de-ma-ka-ta-ru-ng-an). And we have two extra letters which are ng and ñ that just further complicates things.

So since I’ve lived most of my life outside the Philippines, I had to devise a way to (hopefully) simplify things. I don’t use my full name on the internet, not just because it’s so god damn long but also because it’s hard to pronounce but I’m also very forgiving when people mispronounce my name. 

And I’m sure a lot of you folks can sympathize with me on this. I’ve mispronounced a lot of names too, some so hard I’ve just given up. I feel you. 




  1. I feel you… at least a little. My name is simple, the first is all of 5 letters and the last is all of 4. Yet, somehow, people always stumble over BOTH my names. I learn to just deal with it. Whenever someone asks my last name, I drawn it out slowly, giving examples which each letter “B, as in Boy” “K as in kitten.” It’s the only way people get it… and sometimes they still don’t.

    In college, we had a large population of Chinese students. They all adopted “American” names, presumably because they were easier to say. I always felt like that was a little sad. I think they should have had us all saying their real names. Maybe we’d finally get it right! Besides, it’s their name. I wouldn’t like the idea of going to a different country and changing my name just to fit in.


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