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Name from the Past - an initiative hosted by Transvanilla

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név a múltból

Beanpole, crater face, bony, big ears, tin grin - just a few of those insults, nicknames that were used without consent. This happens with many people and most of us can leave these behind, overcome or get used to while growing up. However trans women and men can not do that, they have to carry their birth name for their whole life. Even if it does not fit them. An initiative called Name from the Past was created to highlight this issue.

It is difficult to even imagine what it would be like to wear those childhood nicknames and insults every single day. Constantly being confronted with that distorted image created by others. Trans people in Hungary have to face this every day, because their own first name, which they received at birth, can not be changed anymore after 2020. As a result of that thousands of trans people bear a name from the past that prevents them from living a full life in the present.

Because of the lack of having documents matching one’s gender, it is a problem to pick up a parcel at the post office, to see a doctor, to use the COVID immunity certificate or to go to the bank. Not to mention the difficulties in the labor market and in school settings. We believe it is crucial to highlight these issues and we are glad that stakeholders, allies and supporters stand together so that no one should be stigmatized by an uncomfortable name” - says Krisztina Kolos Orbán, vice president of Transvanilla.

The Name from the Past is a unique social initiative that, by joining forces of trans and cis people, draws attention to what it is like to officially live with a name that no longer or even never belonged to someone.

In third grade I was told I was a Romanian refugee and it lasted for years. I knew I shouldn't have minded it, but it felt bad. I did not even understand and I was hurt even though I could rely on my family, which is not given to many. I was able to leave this nickname behind, but not everyone is so lucky. I see my trans acquaintances struggling every day, even though they are talented, valuable people. They are thinking of leaving the country, or even much worse, because it is hopeless for them to exist in Hungary today. We are all part of society, we all deserve equal rights and a self-identical life. It is outrageous that instead of supporting, they are risking Hungarian lives and do not acknowledge that trans people are also citizens of this country. I think it is our duty to seize every opportunity to stand up for such important issues as an artist, a well-known face, a person. Initiatives like the Name from the Past greatly help understanding and acceptance. But there is a need for a lot of us, so I can only encourage everyone to join. To stand out is more relevant now than ever before, ”says Áron Molnár, actor and activist, founder of the noÁr Movement, who was already joined by many other well-known people.

Anyone can join the initiative by uploading a picture of themselves tagging with nev_a_multbol, advocating that everyone should have the same life and be true to themselves.

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