I dislike my Korean name. Chai Sunil.

First the surname. No one pronounces it right. I think I’ve written about this before. But the reason we spell it like that is because it’s most accurately pronounced like the word “chair” without the “r”. My great-grandfather spent some time in the U.S. and that’s how he spelled it, so everyone after in our family did the same way. But yeah, most Koreans go with “Choi”, which is a complete mispronunciation. In fact, my uncle, when he came to the U.S., wrote down “Chai” and they said it was wrong, so they changed it to “Choi”. So he’s a Choi while his brother my dad is a Chai.

But yeah, everyone in America pronounces it Chai like Chai Latte so we just gave up.

Also hate “Sunil”. Everyone pronounces this wrong also. The problem is, it’s an Indian name also, which is pronounced like “Sue Kneel”. But that’s not how you pronounce my name. It’s actually like the words “Sun Eel”. Rhymes with “Fun Wheel”. But yeah, no one says it like that because of the Indian thing.

But what I hate most is that I can’t pronounce my Korean name. It’s pretty sad, but yeah, it’s just hard to pronounce correctly, and when I say it, Korean people always mishear it, so I hate saying my own name. It’s not Jieun / Jibin / Giwoong hard, but pretty difficult. I’ve always been envious of people with easier to pronounce Korean names, like Hyunmo, or Kisoo, or girls names like Sunju (my sister) or Gisoo (Kevin). They’re lucky.

So yeah, don’t like my Korean name.

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