Renaming Myself

I have wanted to choose a new name for myself for years now. At the moment my name is Laura. I don't have a middle name.

I have done some research and I have come across the name Laure which I like. I think it is pronounced Lore, like in folk lore. 

Another option is to respell my name Lora or Lorah. I particularly love the spelling Lorah. I don't know however if Lora/Lorah are spellings with a history of use or created spellings. Can anyone help me here?

Another option is to change my name entriely. I love the name Sofie/Sophie. Again can not decide on spelling though I am in love with the spelling Sofie.

Other names I am considering using for a middle name... Elinor, Isobel, Alys, Elisabeth, Juilet, Kathrin/Kathryn, Vivienne, Caitlin.

Any suggestions for a middle name would be greatly appreciated.


February 20, 2017 3:44 PM

I know a person who spelled her name differently throughout her life with no legal changes. Those closest to her who had been through all the iterations sometimes forgot or couldn't keep up with which was the current spelling, but it was otherwise uneventful and brought her satisfaction.

I would consider Laure too close to try to explain or make a point about enforcing. The e is voiced but in a swallowed way that makes it unnoticeable to many outside the language.

"It's Lore-huh, not Lore-uh" seems particularly pedantic. But that might be easier in England than the US with your proximity to France. If you want to go by Lore, just use it as a nickname you introduce yourself under and tell people your name is Lore and if it comes up explain that it is short for Laura. Lara is another variation possibility. Lorah seems silly and Dr. Seuss-ish to me, though.

Is there any reason you're not looking into just adding a middle name and using that? Or is that the intent?

I've noticed you trying them out in text here but have you tried them outloud? Using various names at coffee shops and restaurants? Asking friends to call you one of the names for a day? 

February 20, 2017 6:59 PM

Another name I forgot to mention in my post is the name Lucy/Lucie. Again can't decide on spelling. Lucy/Lucie would be for my first name.

February 21, 2017 3:28 AM

You've asked this question before -- I remember writing a long post on the name Laure; I have two American friends named that.  It's possible that reply was eaten by the evil arbitrarary spam filter, but the question was definitely posed.  I think it would be helpful to add on to the threads you've already introduced, rather than start all over again with more or less the same question.



February 21, 2017 11:54 AM

These Laure/So[ph/f]ie* questions have been asked for many years, actually -- although there have been many (many!) username changes, this is an old-time regular who's been posting since I think before the forums were created (back when there was just replying to Laura W's main blog posts).

My advice is simple: start by using Laure, pronounced as "lore", as in "folklore", as a nickname. That is an easy step that you can take entirely without any further legal action. It will be an easy transition to friends and family, at least, if you say Laura like Lore-uh, which I do. Voila, you have an easy straightforward name that you have liked for years and years, and no one will think it's the slightest bit weird that your ID says Laura on it, even if you write Laure everywhere else you go. If I remember correctly you are quite young and still in the stage of your life where you are meeting new people as you go through new environments (like graduating high school and going on to college or a job). Just start introducing yourself as Laure; it will catch on quickly and it makes 100% sense as a nickname for a Laura.

If you try that and it doesn't feel right, you cannot expect to get further by asking yet another thread on an internet forum about Sophie/Sofie/Sophy/etc, alone or in mashup with another name. Ditto Lucy/Lucie or one of the others you've already asked about. You have exhausted the possibilities of what you can get out of message board discussion... and I think you've exhausted some regulars too.

If Laure as a nickname doesn't solve your name unhappiness, I think the next step must be trying the different names on for fit, rather than more theoretical discussion, because there truly isn't anything more to say that hasn't been said already. You like very classic names that are currently well-loved and that means they're going to be unobjectionable to most everyone. Pick one, perhaps at random, to use for a week or two -- use them when you order coffee or at a restaurant or in any other context where you have a one-time interaction and don't expect to see the person again. One of the names will probably feel more "right" to you than others, as you try them on. That's your choice then! Congratulations! I might consider putting Laura as a middle name with it so that you can more smoothly integrate the people who knew you before the name change. Even if it's a name that doesn't speak to you, it's still a gift your parents gave you and unless you have a particular trauma with it, I think it would be nice to retain it... even if it's not as a call name and collapses to a middle initial almost always.

Only at that point once you've reached the final decision about what you'd like to be called would I worry about the spelling -- because I think it'll be useful to see that the baristas always write Sophie or Lucy, and then you can get a sense how much a different spelling really would be rocking the default assumption. (ETA: this is very region-specific, of course -- just because Sophie and Lucy are the overwhelming defaults where I live doesn't mean they will be where you live... and that's exactly why you just need to take the auditory name for a test-drive and see how people in your community respond.) My personal feeling on really minor variant spellings is that it's worth it only if you have a specific reason for it -- so yes if you're honoring a particular namesake or you're using a spelling that honors your ancestry, but no if you just slightly prefer the look of it. (This is why I don't have a baby Wilfrid, even though in the abstract I think that's a more attractive spelling.) However, since this is a case of you making a decision for yourself rather than for a child, I think if you go into it knowing how much explaining you'd have to do (because you've taken the name for a test drive), then I think you should go for it. 

February 21, 2017 12:00 PM

And, since you asked a specific question about whether Lora or Lorah have a history of use. Lora has been in regular use since the start of the SSA data in the 1880s. Lorah is rarer and only shows up very occasionally with 5-6 uses per year. 

February 21, 2017 12:44 PM

What lucubratrix said.

February 23, 2017 6:12 PM

I agree with this. If you've spent your whole life being called Laura, being called anything else won't feel right the first time. It won't feel right the 10th or 20th even. But your name is your choice, and as you try on a few different names, one of them may start to feel better than the others. If you have been considering this for years, it seems unlikely you'll change your mind to prefer your given name. Try, as lucubratrix said, using a name in one-off interactions to get used to the idea of responding to a new name. The next step is finding someone you trust to help you test-drive them in person, maybe for a week or so at a time. That will probably be a hard step. But if it is, remember this is something you're serious about, and as such, will eventually need to tell the people close to you. My guess is it feels like a bigger deal to you than it will to most in your life. All of my trans* friends have switched names at some point, some more than once, and some get an occasional unintentional stumble over a previous name, but usually not worse than that.

Good luck with your name-trials :-)

February 24, 2017 10:37 AM

I have thought long and hard about my name over the past few days. I have come to the conclusion that I won't be happy with the name Laura or any of it's variants including Laure and Lauren. 

I actually play a game (won't mention which one) which is a multi player game and on there my name is Sophie/Sofie so I already feel a connection with this name as that is what people call me while I play. I have been playing it for over three years now. I have asked all my friends to call me Sophie/Sofie for a while to see how I feel about it being my name in real life. I am not going to burden my family with my name change until I have completely decided on my name.

Thanks for the input I have received I appreciate it.

March 10, 2017 3:19 PM

Hello I have decided and finally settled on the name Sofie for myself. Now I am serious need of middle name help.

Both my parents like Sofie-Rose as my full name which I like too so that is what I am going to go with on a daily basis but I also would like a second middle name.

Some names I am thinking about are... Elin, Eline, Esme, Estelle, Iris, Phoebe, Renee, Rose.

I am open to lots of other suggestions as well. 

Thanks for any help.

March 10, 2017 7:12 PM

I think Sofie-Rose Estelle is my favorite from your list, with Sofie-Rose Renee in second, but I like all of your options.

Other options: Amal, Ann, Annalise, Annika, Birgitta, Birgitte, Cecile, Charlotte, Charlize, Diane, Emilia, Fallon, Greta, Gr3tchen, Irene, Isabel, Lilia, Louisa, Louise, Marin, Michele, Nicole, Olive, Penelope, Selene, Terese, Vivian.

March 12, 2017 10:46 AM

I love Sofie-Rose Isobel and like Sofie-Rose Charlotte and Sofie-Rose Selene.

Do you think Sofie-Isobel is to long a name hyphen together?

March 12, 2017 11:22 AM

It's not too long to hyphen but it is too long to think you will be called the whole thing by everyone. When people who see you regularly will shorten Sofie to Sofe, they will definitely shorten Sofie-Isobel to Sofe or Sofie or similar.

March 12, 2017 2:19 PM

I have whittled it down now to a few options. All names will be hyphenated.








March 12, 2017 4:18 PM

My vote is for Sofie-Rose because I tend to think hyphenated second names should be short. I also like the sound of Sofie-Elinor.

March 12, 2017 4:46 PM



The one syllable makes it stand out as the obvious frontrunner.