(Closed) What would you do?

posted 7 years ago in Names
Post # 3
Member
2392 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

Don’t change it.

It seems pretty clear to me that you don’t want to.  I was in a similar position.  I love my last name, identify with it, never imagined myself changing it.  I’m pretty sure my fiance knew this, and at one point he came out and admitted that he’d actually really love it if I changed it.

I was torn… I really want to make him happy.  I love him and want to give him all good things in life.  But this was not something I want to do, it’s something very personal to me, and it’s a decision he doesn’t really have to be faced with.

I felt guilty about not doing what he wanted for a few days, but then I realized that if I was doing it solely based on his wants and not my own, it would be a miserable process.  I would be upset with myself and with him every step of the way, on some level.  I think it’s fine if women do choose to change their names, but it has to come from your wants and not someone else’s, not even your future husband’s.

The more time goes by since those conversations, the happier I am that I’m not changing my name.  I did promise not to get super pissed off if people happen to call me Mrs. HisLast (though I suspect he’ll also get addressed as Mr. MyLast sometimes, since I handle all the financial stuff and my name ends up on the bills).  You can go a step further if you want and suggest that it’s okay if his family/friends of yours call you Mrs. His Last even without legally changing your name.

After all, he probably has the same desires to give you wonderful, happy-making things as you do for him.  While his ideal might be a future wife who would love to take his name and embrace it, he loves you and would rather have you being happy with yourself and happy with the decisions you are making as you marry him, than someone who is full of sorrow and regret as she makes that change.

ETA: Have you considered adding his last name as a middle name for yourself?  I thought about doing this, but my middle name is after a relative who died in childhood so I’m pretty attached to it.  But maybe something like that would work for you as a way of doing something for him while still holding onto your name.  Also, all my advice was written with my interpretation of your post that if he didn’t have an opinion, you would absolutely want to keep your name.  That’s the sense I get, and I think it’s really hard to feel positive and excited about making the change in a situation like that.

Post # 4
Member
293 posts
Helper bee

I think it’s a decision everyone needs to make for themselves, but since you ask “what would you do”… I would change my name, since I did 🙂

I have sort of the opposite feeling about it. I feel that my identity is something I carry with me because of who *I* am, not because of what my name is. My family is still my family, my values still come from them, and I am still me!

At the same time, I place a great value on sharing the same last name with my husband. To me it is a similar feeling to being proud of wearing our wedding rings – something that symbolizes our unity as a family to the outside world. And when we have kids I think I will be happier having us all share the same last name.

So that’s just my way of thinking about it, but if you feel differently and think you would be resentful of changing it, you should stick to that!

Post # 5
Member
13099 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2010

@rolling berry: I think of it exactly like you do!  My identity isn’t defined by my name; its defined by me and changing my name doesn’t change that or change my family or my values or my ties.

And sharing a name with my husband is another symbol (like our rings) of our unity and commitment to each other.

OP – You certianly don’t have to change your name and it really is a decision you have to make yourself.  But personally, I would change it (and I did!).

Post # 7
Member
610 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

Honestly i would change the last name for him. You still get to keep your first and middle name. And if it means allot to him than do it. Also when you have children don’t you want to all share the same name as a family.

Post # 8
Member
193 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

@Entangled: Totally agree with everything you said!

Post # 9
Member
2154 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

I agree with Entangled – you clearly don’t want to change it, so you shouldn’t. If he feels so strongly about having the same name, he can change his. 

Post # 10
Member
2154 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

Also, no TG fan I know would get with a guy who guilted her into changing her name. Come on now. 

Post # 11
Member
2392 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

@Beluga:  Hahaha, excellent point.

Great movie, though.  We are totally playing the cover of Let’s Fall in Love from that movie at our wedding.

Also, before this becomes a totally useless comment, I’ll say that I get the idea about a shared last name creating family unity.  I get how that can seem important to him, and to you and it’s awesome to have that when the person actually making the change is excited about it.  I just think there’s other things that outweigh that unity when the woman doesn’t have any desire of her own to take his name.  To some women, their name is not a big deal, but to others it is.  It’s very much a part of my identity, the same way it seems to be with yours.  To me, giving something like that up upon marriage doesn’t feel like unity, it feels like a reminder of historical and regressive family structures.  It feels like something being totally off balance between the two of us as we start our lives together.

Just like you’re dealing with some shock and adjustment at his opinion, he may be dealing with some shock and adjustment at your potential decision.  To my fiance, that was a big part of it.  He’s not so much upset that I’m keeping my last name, as he was somewhat taken aback at realizing that while he’d imagined someday being married to a Mrs. HisLast, he wasn’t going to have that and it wasn’t his decision to make.

Post # 14
Member
5096 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

I am not changing my name.

Have you had a discussion about what it symbolizes to him for you to change your name?  Why it’s something he wants?  If it’s family unity, there are a lot of different ways to go about it. He could take your name, you could both hyphenate, you could take his last name as your new middle name and he could do the same…he could also come to realize that it is a SYMBOL of family unity; but it doesn’t determine family unity.

It’s really hard for me to think of a rationale for women changing their names that doesn’t apply to men too. So if he’s not equally willing to change his…then he shouldn’t pressure you to change yours.

Post # 15
Member
1039 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

I didn’t change my name. and he wanted me to.

I was on the edge for a long long time but ultimately felt I didn’t want to.

It doesn’t make us any less married, or commited or a family. I asked him if he would want to change his name ( i didnt want him to) and he said no. I told him it was unfair to expect me to do something he wasn’t willing to do and he finally came around—he’s just more traditional and it hadn’t crossed his mind that I might Not change my name.

 

 

 

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