Choosing a name can be a part of transition for people who have nonbinary gender identities. They might change their name to one that is gender-neutral, so that their name won't lead other people to see them as female or male. As with most parts of a nonbinary transition, this step is optional. It's not necessary for a nonbinary person to have a gender-neutral name if they don't want one. A nonbinary person can have a name that most people don't see as gender-neutral.
Choosing a name
Keep making a list of names that might suit you. Research each name. Some good research questions:
- Is the name compatible with your cultural or ethnic background? Try to avoid cultural appropriation.
- When and where has the name been in fashion? Was it most popular in your generation, or will it make you seem younger or older?
- Is the name short for any long names? It may be short for several. Or, if it is a long name, what are some ways that people will often make it short?
List of all gender-neutral names
All of the personal names in the following list are gender-neutral. That is, people have given them to girls as well as boys. (Some names in this list might be only rarely used for a particular gender.) These names would be suitable for people of nonbinary genders, if they don't want names that are seen as feminine or masculine.
Each name entry is in this format:
Name. Language or culture of origin. Meaning. Sources cited. Keyword list.
The sources cited prove that the name is gender-neutral, and that it has the meaning given. The keyword list is to make it so that, if a person wants a name that has to do with a certain theme, such as the sea, or stars, they can search the names for any with those keywords.
If you put more names in this list, please make sure that you put them in alphabetical order.
The above lists were split into separate pages to help keep the names alphabetically organized, and because having the entire list all in one article made editing difficult.
Legal name change
Making a change to one's name takes much paperwork. One must update all of one's identification papers. Please add to this section, with information about how to get a legal name change in any countries you know about.
England and Wales
You can change your name in England and Wales by a Change of Name Deed, commonly known as a Deed Poll.
You can choose any name at all, regardless of gender. You may change your first, middle and/or last name.
There are online services which will print out a Change of Name Deed for you, such as UK Deed Poll Service. However, you can make your own Change of Name Deed at home, by copying the legal text and inserting your old and new names.
Simply print this out onto high-quality paper. No watermarks, stamps or seals are necessary.
Sign the Change of Name Deed in your old and new names in the presence of a witness. You need at least one witness but can choose two.
The witness can be someone you know, as long as they are not related to you and do not live at the same address. Otherwise you can ask a lawyer to witness your Change of Name Deed, which generally costs £5 per copy. It is advisable to print out multiple Change of Name Deeds, so that you can change multiple documents at once, and in case a copy is lost.
You can choose to have your Change of Name Deed enrolled; however, that will mean that private individuals can find your name change and it is not a good idea if you plan to be "stealth." Enrollment is not necessary and does not affect the legal recognition of your Change of Name Deed.
After your Change of Name Deed has been signed and witnessed, you can send your Change of Name Deed to HMPO, DVLA, DWP, your bank and other institutions to have your name changed on your official documents. The Change of Name Deed is normally sufficient proof of your new name, but there may be additional requirements depending on the institution.
- Gender Queeries: Unisex and gender neutral names
- Wikipedia article on unisex names
- Behind the Name: Unisex Names
- Baby Names 1000: Gender neutral
- Babycenter: Names that work for boys and girls
- Baby Name Guide: Unisex