Many people have asked me why I chose the name Kylie when I decided to transition. I often get asked if my name used to be Kyle because most trans people try to keep it similar to their birth name or dead name, but I didn’t.
The reason I didn’t keep it similar or close to my birth name (which feels foreign even to write or say) had no attachment to who I was. It was pure masculine.
It was the opposite of everything I am, it carried a stigma from people who knew me during high school and thought horrible things about me even though they never actually knew me or what I was going through.
It started when I was in Halifax in 2015, during Halifax pride season which was in July I decided to do drag, I needed a name. Traditionally, the drag mother (one who indoctrinates a young drag queen in the ways of femininity) usually gives you a name but I wanted to choose my own.
I’ve always been feminine and very androgynous, but once I did drag is when I realized it was more than just having a feminine side, it was who I was entirely.
I initially chose the drag name Kylie Karma, because Kylie is a very feminine and sexy name. It’s not something generic like Ashley, Brittany, Kate, etc. It stands out, and I always want to stand out.
I get asked if I named myself after Kylie Jenner all the time because I’m a fan of hers, but the answer is no I didn’t. Do I think she’s a great celebrity? Yes, she about to become the youngest self made billionaire, but I’m not obsessed with her.
However, I do feel like I connect with her sex appeal persona & presence, I’m very sexual in how I dress, act and talk and wanted a very feminine and sexy name to match my personality.
I chose Karma as my last name as a drag performer because I believe that in the end Karma always wins & how people treat me will always come back to them.
My middle name is Jean because my grandmother which is my mother’s mom that still lives with us has been in my life since I was born and she’s one of the kindest women I know.
I remember many good memories of her growing up and she would always treat me well. Even when she sees me in makeup, dresses, heels, she never makes comments or disapproves.
She had a rough upbringing and was poor as a child, she struggled with alcohol abuse, and now in her old age, she is starting to lose her memory.
I wanted to include her name because I always want to keep apart of her with me wherever I go.
Even though I see her every day when I’m home, I know one day she won’t be there & It meant a lot to me to include her in my name.
Some people use my birth name as an insult, but in fact, it holds no power to insult me. It was apart of my life for 20 years and that chapter has closed, I am who I am, this is me, take it or leave it but I’m Kylie.