Post # 1
In the spirit of the name discussion going on in the boards, I thought I would seek out other brides who aren’t changing their names. It can be a lonely place out there for us! 🙂
The name change issue is kind of a point of contention with me and my fiance. He understands why I want to keep my name (mostly because I like my name and the person that represents, but also for professional reasons), but I also know part of him wishes I would take his name and feels slightly offended by it.
How can I make him feel better about this? Also, how are you planning to spread the word that you’re Mrs. Maiden Name instead of Mrs. Married Name?
Post # 3
Do you have any mutual friends that kept their names? It might help to point out that it is becoming quite common. Fortunately, my FH never asked me to change mine, but we have lots of friends who never changed theirs, including his stepmom, so it was nothing new to him. I am adding something in the program using wording from an at-home card (these have been discussed on weddingbee a few times) such as "Ms. Karasue and Mr. FH will be at home after this date."
Post # 4
I’m not changing my name, but I also am not going to mind if people call me Mrs. Husband’sLastName. I’m keeping my own name for personal and professional reasons, so I’ll be Dr. MaidenName but will gladly respond to Mrs. Husband’sLastName. I’m not going to go around introducing myself with his last name, but I’m not too worried about it. (Kids will have his last name, btw.) I always get a little annoyed when a woman who has kept her own name gets pissy about being accidentally called by her husband’s last name. I know it’s convention and that people will accidentally do it without meaning anything by it, so I’m determined to not get upset if/when it happens. I think that mindset is helping me.
As for my fiance, he says he understands, and although I can tell he’s a little … wistful that I’m not taking his name, he’s not upset about it. I was kind of undecided for a while, and I read about someone who asked her fiance if he would consider taking HER last name — and he said yes! She was so impressed by his willingness to change his name that she decided to go ahead and change hers, so she took his name after the wedding. I posed the same question to my fiance, and he said he would not consider changing his name, and he acknowledges the double-standard and understands that I want to keep my name. He has a cousin whose wife kept her own name, and another who hyphenated, so I’m not doing anything groundbreaking here. I think he feels a little better about it because he knows some people may call me by his name anyway and I’m not going to mind, and also that I want our kids to have his name.
As for announcing it, it will start at the reception when we get announced. Instead of saying, "Mr. and Mrs. Husband’sLastName" (or "Mr. and Dr. Husband’sLastName), we’re just going to be announced as "H and E" (our first names). I like the idea of an at-home card wording on the program as well, since we’ll be moving after the wedding anyway, so we can announce our new location as well.
Good luck! I know it’s a tough decision, but you’re not alone!
Post # 5
We’re hypenating our names (yes, *gasp* Fiance will actually be altering his name…) I am going to have the DJ announce us as Mr. and Mrs. Alis-Hamilton. Hopefully people will figure it out. I also bought return address labels with just our new last name on it. If people still don’t get it then I have no problem explaining that marriage is about compromises and this is our first one- but if I get any negativity or "wow, he’s so whipped! That’s such a big deal to change your name- if you’re a guy!"
I might just rip their head off.
Post # 6
I’m not changing my name. We aren’t having kids, which seems to be a big reason to do it. Most of my friends haven’t changed their name, partially for professional reasons, partially because it’s a giant pain in the rear, and most of them aren’t having kids. I don’t see any good reason to do it, so I’m not. 🙂
I’ve been referred to as Mrs. Hisname several times since we got married, mostly by older relatives. No biggie. If it’s important, I’ll correct them, otherwise they aren’t doing it to be offensive so I won’t be offended.
Post # 7
I didn’t change my name, although I may consider it if and when we have kids. I haven’t run into any snags about this. He actually preferred it this way – he said he felt sad when his sisters changed theirs when they got married.
If you predict that your keeping of your last name may cause confusion, an announcement (or return address labels on thank you cards) may clarify things.
Post # 8
MissBanana, I just want to chime in that it’s really nice to hear someone be so forthright about not having kids. We’re 95% sure that we don’t want to, but I get SUCH looks when I tell most people that. It helps that you’re in a group of friends without a lot of kids, but still.
I’m in a similar crowd in which most people don’t change their names – most of us are marrying a bit older and have established ourselves professionally. Mr.GV and I have had two 5-minute-long discussions about it, which have basically gone, "You know I’m not changing my name, right?" "You’re kidding, right? Of course you’re not." "Cool."
I imagine most people won’t expect me to change my name, but I’m in the same boat as some of the other posters… I won’t mind, but I may gently correct them, depending on the person.
Post # 9
I’m not changing my name either, for personal and for professional reasons, and fiance is totally on board. My mom didn’t change her name and my sister and I don’t have identity issues as a result. As for spreading the word, I’m doing as previous posters have suggested. We’re getting announced by our first names and the return address labels for our thank you cards will show that I have kept my maiden name.
Post # 10
saramari – I know how you feel! I don’t plan on changing my name, and my Fiance is a bit sore about it. I got him to feel a little better about it by saying I’d be fine with having people call me Mrs. Hislastname socially if he likes, but I won’t change it legally and esp. professionally. If it’s important to you, then just stand firm but remain calm about it – I don’t think my rants about equality and stuff had much effect on Fiance. 🙂
Post # 11
I’m keeping my name as well for a number of reasons. The first is that I’m an academic, so name changing is an uncommon practice in my professional and social world (even if I don’t have a long list of publications that would make changing my name confusing). The second type of reason is the run of the mill feminist stuff — being identified as another’s property and so on. Although an argument in favor of changing your name (and the reason that many still change if not simply for the sake of tradition) is that it is symbolic of now being one family, and I do think that changing your name can be sweet for this reason. So the feminist argument doesn’t really clinch it for me. What does is that I’m lazy and hate bureaucratic paperwork, and by keeping my name I can avoid nearly all of it. Yay! (This can also work as a surrogate reason if you want to avoid a politically charged conversation about the status of women and the institution of matrimony).
My fiance’s mother kept her name, so me keeping mine is no big deal to him. He also knows that I would gripe about the paperwork and this way he doesn’t have to hear me complain. It’s fairly easy to spread the word that you don’t plan on changing it. If the topic comes up, or people hint about your upcoming name change, just let them know that you don’t intend to do it. (Just as when people hint about us having kids, I mention that we don’t intend to do that either…)
One way you may be able to make your fiance feel better is to remind him that there’s no urgent reason to change your name right away — you can do it at any time if for some reason you later decide to take his (or he yours).
Post # 12
Not changing your name seems to be the way it goes these days. When my fh and I got engagaged I was shocked by the number of people who asked me if I was going to change my name after we got married. I always just assumed I would change my name, it never occured to me not to; therefore, it caught my by surprise that so many people asked me about it. We’ve given it long thought, and I’m sticking with changing my name. Now that I tell people this confidently, they act surprised — like I am out of the norm. Maybe it is because of my profession, my name is so much a part of who I am (I am a teacher) — Everyone calls me Miss Myname — a hundered times everyday — so the change seems strange. I am also getting my master’s degree, so many assumed I would want to keep my name for that. I think that by today’s standards you are more in the norm than I am!
Post # 13
I had a really hard time with this because the family name will die out if my sisters or I don’t keep our name. (Well, not really because it’s a huge Scottish clan, but our "line" will.) So I was thinking I wanted to keep it for that reason, but then I realized that was the case with my mother’s maiden name, her mother’s maiden name and a few others in our recent history. (Lots of strong women in my family!)
I figured I can’t play favorites so now I’m planning on First OldFamilyLast HisLast. My maiden name doesn’t sound great in front of his while the family name does and it will be easy to slip in as a child’s first or middle name.
We’ll see how it works. 🙂
Post # 14
C. never expected me to change my name and briefly entertained the idea of changing his… although he is the only male kid, so he wanted to keep his. I guess I’m a little sad that my kids won’t share my last name… That’s the only hook for me. (of course that pre-supposes that we’re having kids, which is another outstanding question in our minds).
As a pediatrician I already feel like I have 100’s of kids and don’t necessarily need more!
Post # 15
I had always planned on keeping my name and my fiance never thought anything of it. His mother kept her maiden name when she was married and my mother had done the same. Even though I’m keeping it for selfish reasons (can’t help it- it’s been mine all my life!) I’d also like to think that I’m just keeping with tradition
Coinceidently my fi’s last name is also my mother’s maiden name…so it could’ve gone either way really.
Post # 16
@Gorges, no kids was one of the easiest decisions we’ve made as a couple. I haven’t noticed any looks though anyone who knows us won’t doubt that we thought through it and a look wouldn’t change anything. People who don’t know us probably see the confidence with which we answer and know that it’s not up for discussion. 🙂
But this thread reminds me that I need to change my WB name to MsBanana now that I’m married! (Apparently keeping your name makes you a Ms. not a Mrs. I’m not sure it really matters anymore)