I think about this topic often. I deliberated a lot before deciding to use a pen name. Ultimately I remind myself it is still me… just not my birth name (as another commenter mentioned too). I don’t want my conservative Christian adult students coming across my sex writing, for one. I also want to write about relationships and Polyamory without outing someone who may not want to be outed as poly (though I change others’ names too).
I like to think of all of this as a form of truth that needs to package itself in order to be more true. Im finding myself sharing this alter ego with more and more people in my real life. Embracing it fully is an ongoing process though.