April 27, 2012

My absolute number one pet peeve...

...you mean there's something you haven't complained about yet, Kristin???

Well, yeah.  I don't know how I've made it two years on this blog without discussing my #1 Pet Peeve.

While overly-dependent people, Alaska, crazy-church people, parents who don't take care of their kids, people don't take care of themselves, and the red tape of the army are on the list of things I really don't care for...the single thing that bothers me the MOST is.....*drum roll*

When people don't spell my name right and/or pronounce it wrong.

My name is Kristin.  Not Kristen, Kirsten, Kirstine, Kristine, Christin, Christen, Christina, Kristina, Kris, Kristi, or Kirsti. (My favorite is when the garbage bill comes in the mail to "Kristenien Darhower".) 

(For the record, my last name is Darhower.  DAR-HOW-ER.  Not DARE-HOW-ER.  Sound it out.  It's basic phonics, ya'll.  I met my would-be husband at a bar and learned his last name at three o'clock in the morning.  I still remembered how to say it the next day.  I've actually tried to pronounce it the way I hear people mispronounce it, and I can't do it.)

Whenever my name is printed somewhere, chances are it's "Kristen".  Or "Kirsten".  Because we all know that "Kr-" is the same sound as "Kir-", right?? 

It's not about being right or wrong.  It's about the fact that my parents named me Kristin and I don't think it's that difficult to spell or sound out.  Sure, there's several ways to spell it, but if I tell you once, write it down or something. 

Being a teacher, I come across some "different" names.  The one thing I'm adamant about is name-spelling.  I apologize to no end if I spell a student's name wrong.  I even make sure the accent marks are there for kids whose names have accent marks.  I check and double check to get it right.  (If I've ever misspelled your name, you have permission to smack me.)

There's nothing wrong with any of those other names.  I like the name Kirsten.  But it's not MY name.  When someone doesn't take the time to learn my name correctly, it just makes me feel like I don't matter.

In the last week alone...

*An instructor at the gym called me "Christina" 15 minutes after I told her what my name is.  Holy cow, did I want to hit her...

*EVERYONE I've ever worked with EVER has spelled my name wrong.  The most recent?..."Kirsten".  After I've worked there for 2 years...

*The man who changed out my winter tires looked at the clip board (after I had spelled my name out for someone else to write down) and said, "Christina??"  Um..Do you SEE an "a" on the end???

*In several work emails, I've been called "Kristen".  Dude, in order to SEND me an email you have to spell my name right.  How do you mess it up in the actual email???

My way of dealing with it is, honestly, being horribly snotty and passive aggressive.  If you pronounce my name wrong after I've already told you how to say it, I just don't answer.

People get really confused when they can't understand why I'm not answering to "Krista" because obviously that's what my name is....

This is the look of indifferent disgust I will give you for spelling or saying my name wrong.  It's like "half-smile on the outside/I want to kill you on the inside".

Do you have issues with your name??  I'd love to commiserate with you!
My parents were not trying to be creative when they named me.  They thought they had picked one of the more sensible names out there (Destiny or Nevaeh, anyone???).  Speaking of names, this is kinda funny.  As a teacher, I can say that these are some of the most popular names out there.  Especially the boy ones!


  1. Well, having been Rebecca Brown at one time in my life, I can't say that I really had the name problem that you experience on (what sounds like) a daily basis. While I can understand people misspelling your name with a variation like Kristen, I do agree that people should spell your name correctly after being told how to!

    I can now relate, however, to last name problems. Since getting married, I've learned that it is necessary to both spell and pronounce my name for people. I find it annoying.

    I was also amused by the baby name article you linked to because I have had students with many of those names on the list! In fact, this year I have an Aiden, Brayden (both mentioned), and a Dreyden in my class. I still love the name Aiden thanks to Sex and the City, but I couldn't say that I disagreed with some of them!

  2. Considering I have the same name as you, this is ALSO my biggest pet peeve!! :) We're in the same boat. I swear, it's not hard to look on the paper at work and copy my name onto the chart (some people always spell it EN). I have had many teachers/professors that spelled it with an en. today when i got my screen protector put on my iphone, the guy asks for my name for the computer and even as i spelled it, he wrote it wrong. ugh! NOT THAT HARD. there's a difference between IN and EN!

  3. Preaching to the choir here...people always spell my name wrong. I have a FB friend who spells it "Dorthy" every single time she posts on my wall or a comment (she's a name-user) and MY ACTUAL NAME IS RIGHT THERE. :) Oh, and my BFF from Kindergarten? The one I've known for 30 years? Still spells it wrong too.

  4. My name's pretty simple. It's Linda. But if I'm talking on the phone & they ask me my name they always hear Belinda, Melinda or Brenda...so annoying!

    Hope people start getting your name right :)

  5. I should have totally wrote a blog post about this myself! I have the same problems! My name is Nicole, but I go by Nikki and always have. I thought N-I-K-K-I was the most common spelling, but apparently not. I've seen everything from Nickki to Nikkie to Nicky to Nickie and on and on. I just had a birthday (yesterday) and even on Facebook, where it lists my name RIGHT ABOVE THE BLANK SPACE where you leave a message for someone, more than a few people wished "Nicki" or "Nickki" or "Nicky" a Happy Birthday! Seriously, people?! I've even had people misspell Nicole. There's no "H"! It's not "Nichole"! Grrr! And don't even get me started on my last name! My maiden name is Towler, which is pronounced like it's spelled - TOW-ler. As in TOW truck. But everyone - EVERYONE - pronounced it as TOWEL-er. And to make matters worse, my married last name is nearly identical to my maiden name. It's Powley, which is pronounced POE-lee. POW rhymes with TOW, but now people pronounce my new last name as POWEL-ee. UGH! I cannot win!

    Sorry for ranting, Kristin, but this is a total sore spot for me too. (If you couldn't tell.) ;)


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