Post # 1
I’ve mentioned before, I’m white and Fiance is Chinese. I have a stereotypically Irish name, he has a stereotypically Chinese last name. I’ve been thinking a lot about changing my name, and finally decided that I would go through with it even though it doesn’t make me totally comfortable. There are a lot of reasons why I’m hesitant to change my name: in my profession I’m constantly meeting new clients and it’s going to be confusing, there’s also a weird amount of alliteration (my first, middle, and last name will all start with the same letter), and I just generally don’t feel connected to the name. When I think of it, I think of his parents- who I’m not very close to.
BUT It means a lot to Fiance and I like the idea of having a family name. So I decided to tell Fiance that I was planning to change my name.
Then, the first person Fiance mentions it to says it’s “hilarious” and makes a Donna Chang joke (from Seinfeld). I was surprised by how upset I got and it’s making me reconsider changing my name. I like the idea of having a family name but I don’t want to be a running joke for the rest of my life. I don’t even get why it’s that funny, a white person with a chinese last name is not a joke–it’s our relationship.
For those of you who have had a similar situation, how did you handle it? Did you change your name, did the jokes eventually get old and go away?
Post # 2
I know of a few Caucasian women who have married Asian men and taken their husband’s last name. It doesn’t seem like a big issue to me, but I guess you might have to explain the origin of your new last name so they aren’t confused. Some things are funny hypothetically, but in real life, I think most people will just roll with it.
Post # 3
I have very Irish middle and last names, and my Vietnamese Fiance has (obviously) very Vietnamese names (all 5 of them!). When we get married, I will be taking his last name, Pham, hence my username 🙂 Sure, it’s going to throw people off when they see Pham and expect an Asian woman but get very white me instead, but whatever! All it takes is a very quick “My husband is Vietnamese.” All of our friends know I’m changing my name, and none of them have made any jokes. I honestly don’t think it’ll be an issue.
PS – one of FI’s uncles married a white woman, and she took his name. I’ve never heard her say a peep about comments from other people, and it’s never made me think twice either.
Post # 4
- Wedding: October 2014 - Legare Waring House
I grew up in South Florida with a large multicultural population, and I knew an Italian Catholic who married a Syrian and took an Arabic last name, and many non-Hispanics who took Spanish last names and vice versa.
We live in a society where this shouldn’t be shocking to anyone, and I think it’s kinda cool myself!
Post # 5
My last name is pretty German and my Fiance is Chinese and I will be taking his name. I know it will throw people off expecting an Asian lady and instead they get me! I think it’ll be fun 🙂
I really don’t think people will pay any attention to it though, not enough for it to be a joke for the rest of your life. Just do what makes you comfortable!
Post # 6
VABride1986: is it possible to hyphenate professionally and then to use only his name socially? if not I would use a family name, when you have kids it makes your life easier. I took on a SUPER Ukranian last name and it feels a bit odd but having children it seemed the best choice. I’m sure you’ll make the best decision for yourself, but I think Donna Chang is pretty great!
Post # 7
- Wedding: March 2016 - Modern, Classic, Fun
VABride1986: just stopping by to say I love the Seinfeld reference 😉
Post # 8
Wow. It’s incredibly rude, close minded, and racist that anyone would make fun of your name if you end up taking your fiance’s name. It’s the 21st century, interracial marriage is not a radical concept! Just say that your husband is Chinese. I have an Indian first name and will be taking my FI’s Caucasian last name. Our hypothetical children will also have Indian First names. people may find it unusual, but it’s what represents us.
Post # 9
My husband’s last name is German, and I’m Asian. I took his last name, so I’m an Asian with a German last name.
My friend is Caucasan and she’s marrying someone who is Chinese. She is changing her name too, so she’ll be a Donna Chang. No one has said something so ignorant to her.