Changing Last Name

posted 2 years ago in Family
Post # 16
Member
53 posts
Worker bee

Hi, Bee. Changing your name is a big deal, emotionally. Therefore, it should be you decision (not his). He already expressed his point of view, but it’s up to you to make the final decision. If he loves you and, more importantly, if he RESPECTS you, he’ll have to understand. My husband was very clear about wanting me to change my last name ONLY if I was absolutely certain about it. Your last name can be of great meaning to your identity, so it’s something you have be 100% sure of and only if it feels right. Additionally, it’s A LOT of work updating and getting all new ID’s, paperwork, and etc. Good luck, Bee!

Post # 17
Member
1671 posts
Bumble bee

You don’t need to change his mind. It’s not his decision and frankly he doesn’t actually have to be okay with it. It’s not something that will negatively affect him so it really doesn’t matter what he thinks about it. He should want to do what makes you happy.

Post # 18
Member
445 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

When I first started talking about this with my then-boyfriend, now fiance, he was weirded out by the fact that I would not being taking his name. He had never seen it done any other way. But after thinking about it and after I explained my reasons, he realized it was unfair to expect me to. He realized that it is just another thing women have to change that men don’t. And then he couldn’t get behind it. 

There are some men changing their names, now. I think that is pretty cool. That would have been my preferred, but FH wouldn’t go for it. So we are just keeping our names. I’ve seen some husbands and wives hyphenate, so they both take each other’s name. I think that is pretty sweet. 

You could send him some stories of that happening or some articles by women who aren’t changing their names to help him see your side.

At the end of the day, it is your name so your decision and if he loves you, he should respect that. 

To be honest, a deeply held traditional view on this subject would make me nervous about what other things he has traditional views on that you might disagree with. It might be worth a conversation.

Post # 19
Member
147 posts
Blushing bee

I don’t think that you should have to convince him of anything. The choice is completely up to you and if he can’t accept that then the issue sounds like it’s more about control than the name. 

Post # 20
Member
4055 posts
Honey bee

It doesn’t matter if he changes his mind or not. He can’t make you change your name. 

Post # 21
Member
1225 posts
Bumble bee

View original reply
kristin36890 :  It’s not something that will negatively affect him so it really doesn’t matter what he thinks about it. 

OP, exactly this.  Whether you change your name or not has NO impact on your fiance. You will still be married, whether you choose to take his name or not.  Your friends, family and coworkers probably refer to you by your first name, so its not even like your new last name will get that much use on a day to day basis.  Its certainly easy for your fiance to insist on this when HIS name won’t be affected.

I kept my name and I can assure you that it has never been an issue.  Even in situations where my husband and I need to present ID showing our different names (e.g. at the airport), we just explain that we are husband and wife and that ends that.

Post # 22
Member
1330 posts
Bumble bee

You should only change it if you want to. Talk to him about it.

I changed mine, mainly because I’m lazy and just thought it would be easier to have the same name when we have kids etc. 

xo

Post # 23
Member
62 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: April 2019

Unpopular opinion, but some of these posts scare me 

Its perfectly ok for this guy to be disappointed about all of his preconceived notions of his family being united under one name not playing out. It probably has nothing to do with a belief that  “men have control over women’s autonomy” 

“his option doesn’t matter” But it most certainly does. It’s his life and dreams too. 

Post # 24
Member
171 posts
Blushing bee

I completely get where you’re coming from, Bee – I have a unique last name and don’t want to take that part of my identity away. I talked to my Fiance about it, but he didn’t have a strong opinion (he actually really likes my last name and didn’t have a problem with me keeping it if that’s what I wanted). I am planning to hyphenate, despite the fact that it’s not very common any more and may be a hassle logistically. (My new last name will be a total of 17 letters when I change it.) To me, though, the represenation of both names is totally worth it to me. 🙂

If your Fiance is not on the same page, I would explain to him how much your last name means to you, especially in light of your father’s passing. I personally think the hyphenation would be a nice middle ground so that both names are represented. 

I hope that he respects whatever decision you make in the end!

Post # 25
Member
1671 posts
Bumble bee

View original reply
schuyler :  I agree that he’s allowed to be disappointed. Everyone is entitled to their feelings. And I also agree that it probably doesn’t come from the woman as property mentality stuff. But it still is her decision and not his. And if his life and dreams are based on his wife’s last name, he needs to rethink a lot of things. His life and dreams should include his wife’s happiness and if she’s happier with her maiden name, then he should be happy too.

Post # 26
Member
445 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

View original reply
kristin36890 :  All this! YES!

Post # 27
Member
9944 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

View original reply
bre3 :  I’m sorry for your loss and I understand why you want to keep your father’s last name.  I wouldn’t give up trying to talk to your fiance about this.  I also wouldn’t accuse him of any nefarious reason for his wanting something as traditional as your taking his name.  Hopefully the two of you can discuss this topic with respect and understanding for each other’s point of view.  My husband expected me to take his name when we married, and I gladly did, but it was my choice.  If I hadn’t wanted to I would have discussed it with him and while respecting his opinion still would have made my own decision in the end. 

There really is no wrong answer – besides being accusatory to your fiance for having a traditional reason for wanting you to take his name.  Nothing wrong with his wanting that, at all.  However, it would be wrong if he refuses to listen to your point of view and it would be wrong if he refused in the end to accept your decision to keep your name.  Perhaps he will compromise with a hyphenated name, which seems reasonable.

Talk to him with love, respect, patience and understanding.  If he treats you the same in return, it is a win-win regardless of which name you choose.  There also is no rush, you can change it at any time if you keep your name the same at first you can change it later (a friend of mine did that, after 5 years or so and having kids she finally decided to take her husband’s name, no big deal either way).

Post # 28
Member
1225 posts
Bumble bee

View original reply
schuyler :  I kept my last name.  My husband still gets to call me his wife.  I love him no differently than if I had taken his last name.  We still had a baby together, making us a family of 3: he is still our daughter’s father and I am still her mother (despite me having a different last name to her).  I perform the same “wifely duties” (whatever the hell those might be!) that I would if I had taken his last name.

Which “dreams” of his have been shattered? I cannot think of one thing that he doesn’t get to do now that he would have had I changed my name.

Post # 29
Member
7527 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

My husband liked the idea of me taking his name too, but he was also very clear in saying it’s entirely my choice and he’d respect whatever I wanted to do. I did take his name, but that was entirely because I wanted to, not cause I felt guilted into it. Your fi is entitled to want you to take his name but not to guilt or pressure you imo. 

Post # 30
Member
7527 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

View original reply
schuyler :  It’s his life and dreams too. 

I have to agree with pp, if his dreams center around his wife taking his name then his priorities are out of whack and he needs to get a grip. He can want whatever he wants, but he needs to respect his wife’s autonomy over her own name. If she wants to take his name, great, but she doesn’t, and since it’s HER NAME, her wants on this subject are more important than his.

How would you feel if the situation were reversed and it was the OP wanting her husband to take HER name, but he didn’t want to? Would you be posting about how it’s “her life and her dreams” too?

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