The daughter had made it clear from an early age that she doesn't like when people shorten her name or mispronounce it.
In the realm of everyday parenting challenges, u/Sudden-Difference767 found herself in a bit of a pickle involving her 14-year-old daughter, Alexandra. At the heart of the matter lay Alexandra's unwavering dislike for any kind of nickname or abbreviation of her name. According to her mom, this has been a thing since she was around 10. Alexandra's a stickler for being called "Alexandra" and doesn't take kindly to anyone daring to call her "Lexi," "Alex," or anything else.
But things got interesting when Alexandra started learning Spanish. In middle school, her Spanish teacher had this practice of calling students by Spanish versions of their names if they had them. So, when Alexandra's teacher tried to call her "Alejandra," Alexandra quickly set the record straight and the teacher respected her wishes. This routine went on for all three years of her middle school journey since she had the same teacher throughout. However, the high school brought new challenges.
Now, in high school and still on her Spanish learning adventure, Alexandra met a different teacher with a different approach. This teacher declared that she'd be using students' Spanish name versions if they existed. So, when she again called Alexandra "Alejandra," the student corrected her, just like before. But this time, it was like talking to a brick wall - her correction went unnoticed.
She went home feeling pretty down about it and spilled the beans to her mom. Her mom is not someone who fires off emails to teachers. But this situation was different. She couldn't let her daughter's name be ruined like that. This new teacher wasn't even Hispanic, so it wasn't a pronunciation hiccup. This teacher's argument was that if these kids ever found themselves in a Spanish-speaking country, they'd be called by their Spanish names. The mother wrote, "I found this excuse a little weak as the middle school Spanish teacher actually was Hispanic who had come here from a Spanish-speaking country and she respected Alexandra’s wishes."
This disagreement turned into a bit of a showdown, with the mom wondering why it was such a big deal for the teacher to simply call her daughter "Alexandra" instead of "Alejandra." Agreeing with her, u/MercuryRising92 added, "The teacher's reasoning was off. If I went to a foreign country and told them my name was Anthony and they started calling me Antonio, I tell them it was Anthony and that's what they'd call me."
After some back-and-forth, the teacher eventually gave in, agreeing to use Alexandra's preferred name. However, u/Incredible-Fella chimed in with a dose of skepticism, saying, "I might be a bit worried that the teacher would take revenge', or be unfair to my kid because of all this. That might be a reason to just suck it up. Hopefully, this isn't the case tho." This story gave us a glimpse into a modern-day parenting dilemma where identity and language education intersect. While opinions do vary, the consensus is that it's essential to respect individuals' choices when it comes to their names and identities.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on September 27, 2023. It has since been updated.