Mispronounced Names

Sarik Winans, Writer


My name is Sarik Winans” SAIR-ik WY-nenz” and not very many people can say it right on the first time they see or hear it. Which I get does look weird. My mom’s name is Sara and she said in school she would always have like 3 or more Sara’s in her class, so for me she wanted something that not everyone had. She went through names and her first idea was Samatha Jasmine but she said since she worked 3rd shift at a gas station at the time she always had free time so she added her and my dads name together in different ways to see how it would sound and she took S and A from Sara and I and K  from Erik and the R from both of them and put them together and got Sarik. She even did something similar with my middle name which is Marann “ Mar- Ann” which is simpler but she took both of my grandma’s names and put those together and I haven’t seen anyone with the same exact name but I have seen similar. So I’m an original and my name has meaning.

When school first starts or when I have subs in class I always get a little nervous for new teachers having to say my name. I’m always at the end of the list so I know when it comes and I just sit there and wait. Sometimes they get it right but not very often, I’ve had people say Sar – ick or even Erik. When people ask my name for an order at a restaurant or for fast food i just say Sara because it’s just easier. Even for little kids when I meet them I just tell them to call me Sara. I’ve just let teachers call me whatever they think my name is because I feel weird telling them that they are wrong. I talked to a couple teachers at school about how they feel when a student in their class with a hard to say name and most of them said that it makes them nervous to say them because they don’t want to hurt the students feelings or totally mess up their name. Also that they hope students correct them when they say their name wrong so that they know how to correctly say it.

I do think it is important for people to say names right though, or at least want to learn how to say them correctly. Most people with harder names to say are names from their culture or where they are from or a family name, and I feel it’s important to get them right or even if it’s a more common name just spelled differently. I feel you should care enough to know their name. And most importantly i think it makes the person feel better when people call them the right name.