When I first began to realize I might be a crossdresser, I started reading a lot of stuff about it on the internet. I soon noticed that almost all of the MtF crossdressers in the online community had a nom de femme, and that that was the name they usually went by. I thought to myself, "That makes sense, why not?" At the time I didn't really feel like I needed a girl name, but it seemed like a cool part of the culture of crossdressing. In addition to that, it just seemed practical: if I was hoping to one day pass as a woman, I'd want a ready answer if someone asked me my name.
So I made a list of girl names that I liked: Hannah, Tiffany, Caroline, Amber, and Hillary. Then I noticed that if I chose Tiffany as a first name and Amber as a middle name, I could keep the same initials I have as a guy. So thats's what I went with at first.
But Tiffany never really felt like me. I'm not sure why, but that name always felt more like an alter-ego, or like some woman I was aspiring to be, rather than the person who I just am. Some crossdressers talk about their other gender as though they have a split personality, and while there's nothing wrong with that, it's not what I wanted for me. I started to question whether I should have a girl name at all. In the end I decided I would choose something closer to my boy name. Since my boy name is Tyler, the obvious choice was Taylor. I chose Ashley as a middle name because it sounded like my boy middle name. But when I realized I didn't actually like the name Taylor (at least not for me), I switched them around. So now I'm Ashley.
To be honest, I'm still not sure if a girl name is something I need. But then, so far I've only used it on the internet. Perhaps once I've been caled Ashley in the real world, once that name has been spoken aloud, perhaps then it will seem real to me.