Another name change issue — I wish I wanted to keep my last name!

posted 3 years ago in Traditions
  • poll: What should I do with my last name?

    Keep maiden name

    Change last name to his

    Hyphenate to MyLastName-HisLastName

    Other (write in comments)

  • Post # 16
    1138 posts
    Bumble bee

    Being feminist doesn’t mean you MUST do something to show it. It means to me that you have the freedom to choose what you want to do, just like men do, regardless of what society dictates or what other people choose, you do you.

    So if you want to change your name, go ahead. Your choice. And I’m pretty sure people will still recognise you are you, it’s not like suddenly all that you’ve achieve is gone. It’s just a name, relax.

    Post # 17
    4605 posts
    Honey bee

    Why not double barrel (no hyphen)?

    Post # 18
    578 posts
    Busy bee

    Girl, you don’t know how lucky you are! I would KILL for a common last name! You never have to spell your name over the phone, everyone knows how to pronounce it, etc. You don’t know how annoying it is to have to spell out your name every time you need to make a doctor’s appointment, and do the whole “as in” thing to make sure they get every letter right. (Example: My last name begins with a Z. Over the phone, “z” can sound like b, c, d, g, p, t, or v. So when I spell my name, the first letter isn’t just Z, it’s “Z as in zebra.”) It gets old.

    That said, changing your last name doesn’t make you any less of a feminist. Doing whatever you want is what makes you a feminist. If you want to do the traditional name change, do it. If not, don’t. I’m not changing my last name, even though I hate it, because I’m just too lazy to deal with the paperwork and I’m too old to get used to a new name. And my fiance’s name is just as hard to pronounce as mine, so there’s no benefit to taking his name, lol.

    Post # 19
    431 posts
    Helper bee

    The femminist choice here is to choose what YOU want to do.  That’s it.  There is no obligation to choose your maiden name or anything.  Feminism is intended to expand your choices, not limit them.  The point is you should feel free to do what you want.  Feminism is about living your life the way you want without being limited by institutional misogyny and discrimination.  It’s not a rule book for how women are supposed to act or be or do.  It’s the opposite of that.

    I couldn’t wait to change my last name.  I went from a long, hard to pronounce name to a short, one syllable name.  I am no less a feminist because of that.

    Post # 20
    1099 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: January 2019

    I think you are WAYYY over thinking this. If you want to change your name, just do it. A lot of people seemed surprised I changed my name because I’m pretty strong willed/independent/feminist etc but I was like you, I didn’t consider my maiden name to be my identity. I was excited to change it and be a family name. THAT IS OK. That is what feminism is, the right to make your choice. Do what you want, not what you THINK you SHOULD want to do.

    Post # 21
    718 posts
    Busy bee

    I’ve read so many of these threads and a common theme tends to be ‘I wanted to keep my name, but it was important to me that I have the same last name as my future children’. There are no laws I’m aware of that say a child must have their father’s last name. You can absolutely give a child a mother’s last name.


    Post # 22
    855 posts
    Busy bee

    I am a medical professional on team “I always imagined myself being called Dr. Notmeeither” and team “my family legacy is invaluable.”  I kept my own last name. My reasons were not feminist in the sense that I was “self empowering to spurn tradition and keep my last name,” they were feminist in the sense that I chose my course of actions because I wanted something in my heart. And that meant it was right for me.

    It sounds like you very much want to be Dr. YourFutureHusband. Be that. You don’t need to feel any kind of way for society, or appear to present yourself as something. You want something, you have self autonomy and the ability to guide your own path. Your heart and path say Dr. YourFutureHusband. No double barreling, no hyphenation, no clinging to your old self out of obligation or connection you don’t feel. 

    Embracing that IS practicing feminism.

    Post # 23
    1415 posts
    Bumble bee

    Change it. Feminism is about empowering women to make choices. Sorry but I’ve never seen why keeping your name is a feminist choice. It’s mostly likely your fathers name not your mothers.

    Post # 24
    400 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: August 2019

    I think if you have to ‘try’ to be feminist it’s not really in the spirit of the thing. Since when has changing your name been anti feminist anyway? We put these boundaries on ourself. If you have free will and equality you are doing alright. I really wouldn’t worry about it. It’s entirely obvious from your post your preference is to take his name. Doing anything other than that is being pressed into doing something you don’t really want because of someone / anyone else and that is not the spirit of feminism. 

    I had a boring surname – I had no loyalty to it but it was still ‘mine’ and will always be me. I’ve changed it once already rather sporadically and am looking forwards to doing it again properly. If it helps I don’t feel oppressed in any way. Xxx

    Post # 25
    29 posts
    • Wedding: September 2021 - Roman baths

    I want to keep my last name my partner is quite pushy on my name being changed. I will probably hyphenate it. My dad gave me this name and he works his ass off to be the best man he can be for his kids and wife. He had a Bas upbringing and ran away at 14 so he made himself this incredible man that always provided for us despite hardship. For that reason alone I want to keep my name. I’m a major feminist but being a feminist is having your rights and being greatful. If you choose your partners name you still got to choose. Also you picked your partner you wasn’t sold or literally given away. You can choose his name. No guilt in that. The right to choose is what’s beautiful after that part it really doesn’t matter what name you want. Some parts of tradition can be beautiful and romantic. Enjoy changing your name!!! 

    Post # 26
    7946 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2013

    it is a feminine decison.  you are making the decision to take his name. he is not forcing you to take it.

    i knew without a doubt, i wanted to take my huisband;s name.  i have no connection to my maiden name.  my parents divorced, my father passed away, and i have no relationship with his family ( i didn’t even when he was alive).

    Post # 27
    407 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: City, State

    I don’t have a common maiden name but it is difficult to spell and pronounce, and I got SO SICK of having to spell it out every time I said it to people. My husbands last name is much nicer sounding and easier to spell and say, so I couldn’t wait for the chance to change it! 

    Changing your last name doesn’t make you any less of a strong woman or professional in your career. I have three degrees, two of which have my maiden name and one that has my new married name. I am actually proud to see that diploma on the wall with his last name on it because he supported me through my MBA program by helping out at home while we were both working full time. I am a different woman that got the MBA while married versus my undergrad or engineering masters while I was single / living alone. Changing my name at work was difficult as I have an established career but I’m so glad I did it, and now people at work don’t know me any other way. 

    Do what feels right to you, regardless of any feminist reasons. You are right – feminism is the right to choose. We shouldn’t need to explain ourselves to anyone for any decisions we make as strong and confident women! 

    Post # 28
    871 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    View original reply
    anonbeemd :  As a very strong feminist myself, I am planning to change my name. I dont like my name and my dad was adopted so it has no cultural significance. I also have a crap family so no sentimentality there. Plus my fiance has a nice last name that I like.

    I think feminism is about choosing for yourself. As long as you are doing this because you genuinely want to – I think you should stop second guessing and go for it. If someone judges you for doing it in your peer group, have a good comeback ready and move on. Something like “it was the right choice for me and I liked his name.” Then change the topic to something else. This is 100% your choice

    Post # 29
    2902 posts
    Sugar bee

    View original reply
    anonbeemd :  You said, “desire I have to WANT to make a feminist decision (and I know, feminism is the right to choose — but I do feel like “bucking the trend” in this situation is inherently a more feminist option than changing my name to the man’s name.”

    That doesn’t make any sense! How is it more feminist to keep your father’s (a man) last name, than to take your new husband’s last name?!

    Post # 30
    2582 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: August 2019

    Whoops, replied to the poster in another thread 🙂 Edited to remove. 

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