User Stories

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

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: Khandie Khisses

I was asked to change my name to my legal name one day on Facebook. Something I never wanted known. A few years ago I ‘acquired’ a stalker. A nasty and vile stalker. One who actively searched me out both on the internet and in person. I was advised by…

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: Ace Backwords

Someone on Facebook who was angry at me over something else reported me via Facebook’s “fake name” policy and used that as a way to sabotage my Facebook profile.  I was blocked for 6 months because of that.  I had been using the name Ace Backwords, which I’ve been using as my…

User Story: Anonymous

I am a Kundalini Guru and unfortunately there are some very unstable people in the world and for my legal name to be used rather than my spiritual name and title, can open me to some dangers. I have been stalked and was attacked by a seeker. It would be…

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: Jayne

When I joined Facebook a few years ago I posted my given name and everything was fine. But then Facebook sent me a message asking if I wanted to post my maiden name so that people from high school could contact me. I saw that most of the other women…

User Story: Angelina

I was raped at 19 because of my sexual orientation.  So when I was asked to provide my ID, I felt that I was once again been violated by Facebook.

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: Bon Bon

My name keeps my personal life private and has been my day-to-day name for 10 years.  I complied with Facebook to give them other forms of ID that they said they would accept. I gave one photo with my state ID and an event staff badge with my nick name…

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: Vertical Cat

After using Facebook for eight years, with my name Vertical Cat (talking privately with close family and friends – nothing remotely contentious, just comment and photos of my life – all entirely banal) you suddenly decide to suspend my profile and tell me that I need to produce government ID…

User Story: Georgie Pendragon

I have been using my ‘name’ since the 8th grade—long ago, approximately 31 years! I am transgender, partially Native American, an artist, a stalking survivor, but my name was not to hide. It’s just my name. Anyone who wished to find me, would be using the name that Facebook decided…

User Story: Anonymous

I have no idea how I got reported but after going to a transgender event this past weekend and having met and reconnected with some great people I was eager to share photos and memories. But no. I tried to log in and was told my account had been suspended…

User Story: Anonymous

After being raised in a cult-like religion, I broke free in my late teens. Now that I’m in my 30s, I’ve connected with others with the same background. Since the religion is so strict with its members that any individual caught associating with people deemed “undesirable” is immediately cut off…

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 have been known as _____ by friends and family, both online and “in real life” since 1997. I prefer it to the name given to me before my birth. Everyone I know calls me by this name and very few people actually know the name on my birth certificate, because I…

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

User Stories: Anonymous

Mine is an odd case where my ‘fake’ name wasn’t blocked, but according to Facebook it should have been. During my gender and sex transition, I changed my Facebook name to the name I was taking, but because it was a ‘normal’ name no one reported it even though it…

User Story: Anonymous

My account was suspended not long ago and I was asked to provide my legal name. This caused great discomfort as I had been using an alias for many reasons. First, I feared being looked up by a certain person of the past who had me living life like I…

User Story: Jackie Beltaine

My public name is Jackie Beltaine. It was given to me many years ago due to my involvement as an organizer of the LI Beltaine Festival. I kept it as a public name to maintain my privacy as I was raising a young child and didn’t need the “crazies” showing…

User Story: Silence “KittyBones” Maestas

I have used my Facebook account under my preferred name since 2007. In that time I have never had anyone question it or think that I was someone else or that I was projecting a false identity. I created my Facebook account under the name that I used in every…

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