Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Did I change my name after marriage?

I wrote a post back in September called, Should I change my name after marriage? I loved all of your comments as they were diverse and candid. Just the way I like comments! What I learned is there really are no rules in needing to change your name for marriage. It's all about personal preference.

And as long as you think out of the box then why not behave the same way about this name changing tradition?

I've known my Honey for five years (1 1/2 as friends and then 3 1/2 years as a couple) so I've had plenty of time to think about this. And yes I doodled on my notebook what my married name would look like countless times. And over the years Honey and I have discussed our feelings about my name change. And neither of us were set either way.

One day Honey made the suggestion that I take his last name as my middle name so I have a double-barrelled last name. For me this is the best of both worlds. For now I can keep my last name for work and google searches, but can be Mrs. Honey as well. His suggestion just felt right and we moved forward with the change the day we got our marriage license.

So I did change my name for marriage, but in my 'out of the box' way that works for me/us.

Here are some of my favorite post comments that really stood out:

Meagan said...

Lost of comments on this one. You have a lot to think about. I am getting married in a few weeks and am so excited to change my name. It is weird to think that my children and people I meet in the future will only know me by my husband's last name. That the name that is my identity will slowly disappear. I plan to keep it around a little on magazine subscriptions or library cards. I am changing it because its a tradition and if you are doing the tradition of getting married I think you should go all the way with it. I want to be announced that day as Mr and Mrs. I also feel like changing my name is putting trust in my husband to take care of me and our future children. Be the head of the household. Good luck!

The Good Cook said...

I took my husband's name. It meant so much to him and it really made me feel like a "wife" and part of a whole new team identity. Our children have my maiden name as their middle name, keeping it alive!

Sarah said...

You do realize that your children are not required to have your husband's last name, right? They can have yours just as easily. Heck, make one up for them if you want.

Also, I grew up with a different name than my mother (she remarried when I was five, but I didn't change my name). Guess what? It was no big deal. Ever. No one ever got confused or thought that she wasn't really my mom. Maybe fifty years ago it would have seemed odd, but it certainly doesn't now.

If you don't want to change your last name, but want your children to have yours, then give them yours. If you don't want to change your last name, but want the kids to have Daddy's name, then let them have it and don't worry about it. If you want a new name but don't want to fall into the patriarchal trap of being known only by your husband's name, come up with a new name for the whole family and make your husband go through the whole name-changing mess with you. Think outside the box! You're not limited to your grandmother's traditions.
So what are your thoughts about changing your name for marriage? Out of the three comments, which do you relate to the most?


The Good Cook said...

I'm glad you and Mr. Honey found what works for the two of you!! That's what marriage is; a constant twisting and turning and discovering what works for the two of you. Congrats!

The Simply Luxurious Life said...

Loved reading the comments on the topic. And I guess it really does come down to what you are comfortable with. A great question to pose to readers. So good to have you back and am looking forward to your inspirational posts. =)

Jenn said...

I think no matter which route you go, make sure you're happy with it because it will be your name for the rest of your life! Congrats!

Meagan@Megs7827 said...

Aw! When I started reading this post I remembered what I had commented. Thanks for using my comment again! Can't believe I have been married for 8 months now! I love the compromise you came up with for you guys!

The mad woman behind the blog said...

I'm almost to 5 years and stand by my choice to not change my name. My husband and I met just before we turned 30 and I had just become the person I had always wanted to be and that was associated with the name I had had since birth. I wasn't going to give that up.

I love your solution.

We have a child now and I had to use my last name as a bargaining tool to get the name I wanted.
She has her father's last name but her first name was my choice. I think we both won.

bridechic said...

Great advise. I never changed my name because no one would know AmyJo Tatum the fashion designer of bridal gowns as Amy-Jo Welty. If ever I do literary things like write a novel maybe I'll use his name

Underfunded Heiress said...

Great question. I just got married a month ago and did not change my name. I did ask my husband though if it mattered to him if I did not. He was fine with me not changing it. We are both non-traditional. I think people should do whatever fits them. It strange though that in 2010 when some people find out they think it's strange. Oh well.

SogniSorrisi said...

We've been married 3 years and I haven't changed my name yet. When I was younger I had always assumed I would be then I got married and I just...didn't want to.

I go by his name for social occassions (we get the whole Mr & Mrs. M on invitations and I sign like that on cards and never correct anyone), but I use my name for work and on all my official documents.

I'm not even sure if I will change it when I have kids. Who will know or care? It's funny, too, because so many people are all about the tradition of it, but not everywhere in the world has this tradition. In Europe and many other places women don't change their names.

I think the main thing, though, is that whatever you choose it works for you and makes you happy and comfortable!

JenniB said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
JenniB said...

Myself I took my husband's name. Before getting married I promised myself that if I ever got published (I'm a writer) with my maiden name that I would keep it... I didn't and really love my husband's last name so that is that.

But, I have a couple of friends that kept their individual last names but are soon going to be changing them. Often when referring to them as a couple we would inadvertently mix their two last names into one easier-to-say last name. (So, instead of saying something like, "The Stevens/Ogles are coming to the party," we would shorten it to, "The Stogles are coming to the party.")

Well, it caught on. They are planning on changing their name to a mix of the two last names. I really think the idea is really sweet and fully encompasses the idea of merging two families.