Featured User Stories

These are just some of the stories we’ve received—use the menu at the top to browse by category, or view all stories here.

User stories have been collected via our survey and are only published on our site when we’re given explicit permission by users, including whether or not we are permitted to publish their name and location (many prefer to be anonymous). They are lightly edited for clarity or readability. Note that category tags are for easy searchability only and may not be exhaustive.

Members of the press should contact us before quoting stories in articles or if you would like to interview users directly.

User Story: Anonymous

A guy using a fake name was harassing me via Facebook, private messaging nasty things to people on my friends list—including outing me as HIV positive and sending x-rated photos of me—and even targeting where I work on my company’s official Facebook page.  He threatened a “hashtag campaign” against my…

User Story: Anonymous

I am a transgender person who has gone through a few periods of testing names out to see if they fit, and ultimately deciding on the nickname my mother gave me when I was a toddler and the last name I was born with. I have relatives that I am…

User Story: Anonymous

I worked stealth [not “out”] at a physical labour job for over six years. It was a verbally and sometimes physically abusive environment. Despite passing for straight and cisgender, I still dealt constantly with bullying and ostracism. Having to use my real name online would have risked having my politics,…

User Story: Anonymous

I am the victim of kidnapping and sexual assault. My case has been caught in the judicial system for 10 years. My abuser has found me on Facebook and messaged me under fake accounts. Why should I be isolated from friends and family, and punished by Facebook because I am…

User Stories: Boogie

I was adopted when I was 9 years old against my wishes. My name was changed without my permission or input. I refuse to use the adoptive name given to me on any public forum or social media page due to the fact that I had an abusive step father…

User Story: Anonymous

My screen name since 2010 when I joined Facebook has been Xxx Xxxxx. It’s based on a nickname and my husband’s business name (which is part of my email address). I had tried other names, but they were rejected. However, I was not going to use my real name and…

User Story: Anonymous

I’m a therapist who works with young adults who have serious mental illness. Some of the youth that I work with are involved in local gangs and have violent histories. Some are just overly fascinated with the therapists and social workers that are involved in their lives. I work with…

User Story: Anonymous

I was raised by parents who were both addicts. I survived a childhood full of physical and sexual abuse and spent many years with them dragging me all over the country hiding. As a grown woman I created a community and new family based solely around the person I had…

User Story: Ginger Slap

I am professional burlesque performer. I love sharing soul on stage with my audience, and even my crazy sexual side. But I don’t want stalkers tracking me down. It can be scary sometimes. Having someone you don’t know show up on your door step is an unwanted experience. But the…

User Story: Anonymous

I have PTSD. As a child, I used to get beaten by my mother until I was afraid for my life. My name now is an attempt to break from the person I was then, as well as avoid my mother and other family members. When Facebook said the name…

User Story: Anonymous

I have been writing and campaigning for gay rights in a country where gay people have no protection or equality under the law. I used a pen name to do this and had built up nearly 2,000 contacts across the globe. Then I got a new computer and because it…

User Story: Anonymous

My name protected me from my employers finding out about my private life, and people I don’t want to locate me. My surname is too unusual to hide behind—the man I sent to prison for childhood abuse would know me, and the man I’m divorcing for domestic abuse would find…

User Story: Anonymous

Facebook made me change my name. I sent them this response: Hello. I an a retired peace officer (San Francisco Sheriff’s Department). I have had credible death threats by a convicted murderer because of my involvement with her incarceration. For reasons of personal safety I NEVER put my actual last…

User Story: Joëlle

For the second time, my account has been suspended because I only use my first name online, but not my unique surname. Using a mononym / single name affords me both privacy from the public and familiarity to friends. I’m the only one in the world with my full name combination,…

User Story: Anonymous

I was told today by another user that he hopes that a man beats me to death. He then reported me for having a fake name. Like I am going to post my real name when a mentally disturbed person with a criminal record has a vendetta against me? My…

User Story: Misha Dancing Waters

My name is Misha Dancing Waters. This has been my legal name since 2010. It appears on my Wisconsin driver’s license, United States passport, tax return, bank accounts, lease, and birth certificate. It is what I am called by my family and friends. It is my name. My name was…

User Story: Jenn Ifer

My name is Jenn Ifer. I went to log in on May 9th, 2015 and without warning they had locked me out requesting government ID. I have had a stalker for over 10 years. I have an uncommon surname that makes my legal name very easy for a stalker to find….

User Story: Anonymous

I’ve been a Facebook member since 2010 and am known to people as my writer’s name. I was unmercifully hacked and bullied and stalked by a former husband. I tried the codes: the blocking, ignoring, and fighting back. One of the cyberbullies started posting my legal name and private business. I was publicly…

User Story: Sarah Lechasseur

My Facebook account was blocked a few weeks ago. I am a trans woman at the start of my transition. So I cannot do my legal name change right now (where I live, it may take a year). I wrote to Facebook two times to tell them my story and…

User Story: Kristoph Klinker

I am regularly told I’m not really trans because the name there doesn’t match. And it makes me physically uncomfortable to see my birth name. I just started transition and I’m pretty tender about my birth name right now. —Kristoph Klinker

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