Etiquette Hell

Etiquette School is in session! => "What an interesting assumption." => Topic started by: sulygirl on February 19, 2015, 12:39:41 PM

Title: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: sulygirl on February 19, 2015, 12:39:41 PM
I am not taking my future husband's very long, Germanic last name.  I already have a very complicated welsh first name (that I would gladly change if I could!) but was blessed with a short English last name.  Because I have a professional reputation with that short, easy last name, I am keeping it. FH and I have been explaining this to curious people who keep saying "Oh, you will be a Mrs. Hislastname soon".

It's further complicated because of his 2 children from a previous marriage and the assumption we will have more children.  They both have his last name.  That's fine.  But saying, "Actually, no, I'm keeping mine for professional reasons, but thank you for asking" often launches into a "Well, wihat message does that send to his children?" or "What about your children?"  Because I have endometriosis and am 27 and worried about my infertility every day because we aren't in a good place to have another child yet, that second comment particularly upsets me.  If people say the first part, I just say, "well, that's not something we're worried about"  or "It's not really any of your business but thanks for asking".  For the last one, I"m just at a loss.

Would "That's an interesting assumption.  We will cross that bridge when we come to it" be acceptable?  FH finds any asking about children to be especially but being goaded about it in my own family is normal (my own mother thinks I am "willing myself into infertility" but that is another story for another day).  So, I'm learning.

I assume this will only get worse after we marry but who knows.  I'm learning boundaries (my parents are very, very bad with them and I've learned from the worst as much as I love them) and I'm trying to model myself after my future sister in-laws who have different degrees of name adoption (some hyphenated, some taken, some only taken socially but legally sticking with the maiden name).  They basically shut people down but everyone knows they never wanted and will never have children (they are both significantly older than I am).
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: SamiHami on February 19, 2015, 12:49:39 PM
OP, I don't know where you are, but in the US it is increasingly common for women to keep their maiden names after marriage. I can see it being a legitimate question, as in "Will you be taking his last name after you are married?" are okay. But any kind of follow up such as "Why not?" Should be met with a flat, "Because that's what we've decided. Bean dip?" and leave it at that. Repeat as necessary.

As to nosy questions about kids, I can see responding with, "So kind of you to take an interest, but don't worry. We'll handle it if the situation ever comes up."

And as for your mother and her nutty belief that you are "willing yourself" into infertility...sorry. I got nothing. All I can do is suggest you avoid discussing it with her at all costs.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: HannahGrace on February 19, 2015, 12:54:18 PM
I think it matters where the question is coming from - I'd have a different response to a family member than I would to an acquaintance / coworker.  I have had the opposite issue, where I did choose to change my name and due to my career / professional status, people find it very surprising and comment on it.  For people who matter to me, I have engaged in conversations about it, my reasons, etc.  For people who don't / whom I don't know, I just say "yup, well, it works for me" and move on.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: z_squared82 on February 19, 2015, 01:08:49 PM
Can I vote for telling anyone who asks, “Well, what about your children?” that the children will have *your* last name? No? That might get the wrong reaction (as in I just want them to be quiet, but they might start spouting off something ridiculous).

No, I vote for answering “Well, what about your children?” with “What children?” And then waiting. Because you don’t have any children. You might not be able to have any children. Why are they bothering themselves with a hypothetical? I bet these are people who, if you decide to adopt, will butt in with something about not being able to love a child who isn’t your blood.

"How kind of you to take an interest" is probably the safest route. I, too, might never be able to have children so it really gets my goat when people assume everyone is going to procreate.

For a little humor, a former classmate of mine kept her last name. She blogs. See #6.
http://mykindofparenting.com/?p=15
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on February 19, 2015, 01:10:40 PM
I think I wouldn't bother giving reasons. It's really not anyone's business, and reasons can lead to counter-arguments, as you've discovered. I think a smile paired with lines like, "That's what works best for us" and "We'll let you know" (about kids) is polite, gives the other person a chance to drop the subject gracefully, and doesn't give anyone a reward for their nosy, probing questions.

Also, I think if you have a stock answer that you always say, you won't need to think as much about it, and the question itself may become less painful. Instead of having to scramble for an answer, while thinking hurt and angry thoughts, it becomes like, "Push button A, get answer A*," and you move on with life.

Now of course if it's a situation/person where you want to explain, because you think they are genuinely curious and open-minded (not looking for info to judge you on), you can go ahead and do that. But definitely don't feel the need to do so with everyone.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Hmmmmm on February 19, 2015, 01:12:33 PM
"I'm sorry, I don't understand what you mean. How is my keeping my name a message to his children?" Then based on their response. "Huh, never knew anyone felt that way. It won't be an issue for our family."

" Why are you assuming we can or want to have kids? Anyway, I'm sure it'll all work out when we do." Or really throw them and say you plan to use the South American custom of giving the kids their mothers name. Give them something else to worry about.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: sulygirl on February 19, 2015, 01:27:58 PM
Thanks for all of this!

Stock answers for the kids answer are the hardest and the one I think I need to prep.  I don't think it's necessarily rude to ask, either.  My coworkers are genuinely curious for the sake of business.  Likewise, I've asked before when I was writing a check to send in a card for a wedding I could not attend.  If it was a cousin I hadn't discussed it with, I would ask, "Are you/is your future wife keeping your/her last name?" because I wanted them to be able to deposit the check easily!  So, I don't mind answering.  I just mind further questions that are too demanding of personal info.  His family is very accepting of our choice.  Mine... well, that's something else.

We likely cannot adopt (I have a very well-managed mood disorder but it's still enough to keep us out of the ability to adopt) so that's one less thing to worry about.  It limits our options but it is one worry we don't have.

I have flat out told my mother at this point that she is never to discuss the issue because it impacts not only myself but her future son-in-law and future grandchildren.  Step or no, she has two grandchildren now.  My sister who loves babies recently announced she did NOT want children and that bothered my mother something fierce.  I don't think anyone assumed I would have children until but now my mother is "desperate for grandkids".  My sister is a very good buffer and extremely blunt.  She often tells my mother off if she sees this behavior in person in her best "teacher voice".  I often wish I had my little sister's ability to just go into teacher voice and step back.  I'm working on it.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Onyx_TKD on February 19, 2015, 01:35:41 PM
"Well, wihat message does that send to his children?" or "What about your children?"

"That their stepmother has a good career and professional reputation that she values."

"Oh, I'm not worried. I'm pretty sure pushing them out of my uterus is ample evidence that they're mine."  >:D

But yes, I think "interesting assumption" lines are completely appropriate here.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Wintergreen on February 19, 2015, 01:45:25 PM
All I can think of is for the "What message does that send to his children" is "A good kind of message." But that is maybe rather rude.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: greencat on February 19, 2015, 01:51:49 PM
Make it a joke.  "I'm keeping my name."  Why? "I don't want to have to learn to spell LongGermanicLastName."

For those with the kid questions, just say "Well, if we have kids, they'll take my name, of course.  It's easier to spell!"
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Onyx_TKD on February 19, 2015, 01:57:30 PM
All I can think of is for the "What message does that send to his children" is "A good kind of message." But that is maybe rather rude.

That's my feeling, too. If either or both of the OP's soon-to-be step-children are stepdaughters, I would seriously consider saying something like "It sends the message that their accomplishments and their reputations are just as worthy as any man's, and that they have a right to choose whether or not to change their names, not have it decided for them by society."

The kind of people asking those questions probably won't agree with that view, but they're the ones who opened this can of worms by asking, so I don't think it's rude to answer it (as long as the answer is phrased politely and doesn't insult those who choose differently).
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: nuit93 on February 19, 2015, 02:08:05 PM
I feel a bit lucky in that no one's asking me yet if I'm going to be changing my last name or not.

My FH finds the tradition a bit silly, his ex-wife never changed her name as it really wasn't important to either of them.  I thought about it since I'm not overly attached to mine but I also don't feel any compelling need to change to his either.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: #borecore on February 19, 2015, 02:41:50 PM
My usual answer was: "He didn't (won't) change his, so I didn't (won't) change mine."

People laughed and moved on. But the statement was actually true -- I offered to hyphenate if he would, and he wouldn't; end of discussion. Luckily, I really only got this question from colleagues making small talk. No one in either of our families under the age of 80 was under the impression that we'd consider changing our names.

Once you actually get married without changing your name, the questions really fall off. You can always say, "Oops! I must have forgotten. Guess I'm pretty used to this name anyway." Or, "If I wanted to change it, I would have."  Or, "I'll be sure to let them know you're worried that they won't think care."

Fertility and child questions are a whole other bag of worms that I believe in shutting down as swiftly as possible. Good luck!
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Outdoor Girl on February 19, 2015, 03:16:23 PM
If I ever get married, I'm not changing my name.  It's not a statement at all, except maybe that I'm really lazy!  I don't want to do all the paperwork and running around necessary to do it.  If my hypothetical future husband wanted me to change my name, the only way I'd do it is if he did all the legwork to make it as simple and painless as possible for me.   ;D

In the OP's case...  'I have enough trouble spelling my first name for people; I'm not adding more confusion!'  As for the 'But what about the children...' comments, 'Thank you for your concern, we have it handled.'
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: EllenS on February 19, 2015, 03:40:42 PM
I think it matters where the question is coming from - I'd have a different response to a family member than I would to an acquaintance / coworker.  I have had the opposite issue, where I did choose to change my name and due to my career / professional status, people find it very surprising and comment on it.  For people who matter to me, I have engaged in conversations about it, my reasons, etc.  For people who don't / whom I don't know, I just say "yup, well, it works for me" and move on.

I agree with Hannah Grace and gellchom. There are totally legit/non-offensive reasons why this might be a routine question.

And many women find "comparing notes" about their reasons for choosing different options to be a great way to explore friendship, see things from a different perspective. You really have to go a lot on tone and context, here. It would be a shame to snark at someone who just wants a friendly discussion, or who hasn't made up her mind and want to brainstorm for her own decisionmaking. We all have options and reasons, it can be a really interesting thing to talk about in the right context.

Pushy questions about children are obnoxious, and NOTB. I just don't think prickly or preachy answers are necessary. The best way to shut down pushy people is give them nothing to push against. Judo, not boxing. "Flow like water". Gellchom has some great ways to inject humor.

I was eager to take my Husband's name, as my maiden name is a very common transliteration of an ethnic name that I am not, and my first/lastname combo was very, very common in my industry. I was constantly being mistaken for someone else, and trying to convince people that I was myself because I didn't look "right" when they met me. Now my name sounds like what people expect to see when I show up. I got sooooo much pushback from other women that I would "lose myself" or "deny my identity" by changing my name. The only response I could come up with was, "have you met me? I'm not worried."

Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Oh Joy on February 19, 2015, 03:49:51 PM
I am not taking my future husband's very long, Germanic last name.  I already have a very complicated welsh first name (that I would gladly change if I could!) but was blessed with a short English last name.  Because I have a professional reputation with that short, easy last name, I am keeping it. FH and I have been explaining this to curious people who keep saying "Oh, you will be a Mrs. Hislastname soon".
...

I would head off most of those discussions by changing your response to this statement. 

If it's brought up in the general context of your upcoming wedding during a light social conversation, don't bother correcting them.  Smile and talk about how excited you both are.

If you've somehow already engaged in a conversation about your name or they're asking directly, answer briefly and redirect the conversation.  "Oh, I'm keeping "Smith," but I am so looking forward to being married!  We did our cake tasting the other day...

Best wishes.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: sulygirl on February 19, 2015, 04:12:26 PM

I was eager to take my Husband's name, as my maiden name is a very common transliteration of an ethnic name that I am not, and my first/lastname combo was very, very common in my industry. I was constantly being mistaken for someone else, and trying to convince people that I was myself because I didn't look "right" when they met me. Now my name sounds like what people expect to see when I show up. I got sooooo much pushback from other women that I would "lose myself" or "deny my identity" by changing my name. The only response I could come up with was, "have you met me? I'm not worried."

Haha.  Yes.  I had a number of close friends recently find out I was NOT taking his name and close relatives and go "Are you SURE about this?"  I wanted to be like, "Do you people even KNOW me or just pretend to?"  I hate hate hate my first name because it's Welsh and impossible to spell.  I love my last name because it's simple and 4 letters.  People say they love my name because it's "unique" but they can never spell it properly! So, it amazes me they would not understand or feel I should second guess.

DF would change his name if it didn't impact his children.  He jokes about it all the time.  We also do sometimes joke it off by using an amalgamation of our names (like a celebrity couple).  I guess we could just do that to the people who ask intrusively or demand a hard "why".  The combined name has grown on us for comedic effect and truly sounds ridiculous.  We would even gladly give *my* name to our progeny but I do believe that it's important any child we may have share a name with their siblings just for the sake of identity and ease of use.

I do believe women can bond over decisions with names.  Most of my female friends have hyphenated.  If he had an easy to spell name, I would do that.  But it's about 12 characters of confusion for anyone and even our day of planner had to change the contract 3 times over because of the spelling.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: katycoo on February 19, 2015, 06:17:21 PM

It's further complicated because of his 2 children from a previous marriage and the assumption we will have more children.  They both have his last name.  That's fine.  But saying, "Actually, no, I'm keeping mine for professional reasons, but thank you for asking" often launches into a "Well, wihat message does that send to his children?" or "What about your children?" 

It tells them that simply because we live in a patriachal society doesn't mean we need to conform to its expectations, and there is more to being a family than sharing a surname.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: greencat on February 19, 2015, 06:42:43 PM
Some friends of mine did both change their names to something else entirely.  It's actually more difficult to do that in my state - there are no provisions in state law for men to be able to change their names for free when they get married, as there are for women.  At some point, I'm sure someone will sue to fix that, but it hasn't happened here yet.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: HannahGrace on February 19, 2015, 07:06:13 PM

And many women find "comparing notes" about their reasons for choosing different options to be a great way to explore friendship, see things from a different perspective. You really have to go a lot on tone and context, here. It would be a shame to snark at someone who just wants a friendly discussion, or who hasn't made up her mind and want to brainstorm for her own decisionmaking. We all have options and reasons, it can be a really interesting thing to talk about in the right context.


I agree with this so much!  As I said, my decision to change my name was unusual for my social/professional peer group, and it resulted in many interesting conversations with friends.  In my case, the friend who was the most curious / interested in my decision was actually one of my few friends who had changed her own name.  I was surprised and interested that she was so shocked that I had made the same decision (for different reasons).
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Dindrane on February 19, 2015, 07:36:07 PM
I'm kind of curious about how exactly this question is coming up.

I've been married for nearly four years, and did not change my name. I thought about it early in our engagement, but decided quite firmly against it about a year before we got married.

My family didn't really ask me about whether I was changing my name or not, mostly because I think I told them I wasn't before they thought to ask. Although one of my uncles sent me a birthday check shortly after I was married made out to "Dindrane Husbandlast", and I had to have a very awkward conversation letting him know my bank wouldn't let me deposit it.

I did get this question a lot at work, which made sense in some contexts, and was the most annoying question I've dealt with to date in others. Most of the "made sense" contexts involved someone who had some reason to need to know what my name was asking me in a very neutral tone of voice if I would be changing my name. Slightly more annoying was that same scenario, but the question was "what will your new name be?" Crazymaking and infuriating was this one person who insisted on calling me "Mrs." in the lead up to my wedding despite repeated statements that I was not, in fact, going to be Mrs. anything.

But regardless of the question, I think the best way to respond is to be very just-the-facts, and don't explain your reasoning (especially when nobody asked for it). So, "Are you changing your name?" gets answered, "No, I'm not." End of sentence.

"What will your new name be?" can be answered "Actually, I'm not changing my name." Also end of sentence.

If anyone asks why, feel free to answer "Because this is what I want" or "Because I don't want to." That's a perfectly valid answer, especially if you sense they are asking so that they can argue with you. Any other questions are really none of anyone else's business unless you want them to be.

Fortunately, especially at work, this gets better over time. I still work with people who have known me since before I was married, but the fact that my name has stayed precisely the same for four years has been a pretty big clue that I'm not changing it. There are also now a lot of people who did not start working here until after I was married, so while many of them know that I have a husband, they have no way of knowing whether my last name is the same as his or not.

I also find it helps to make at least a bit of a joke out of it, for situations where you feel like you want to give some sort of reason but don't really want to get into it in any depth. For me, I have 4 given names (1 first name, 2 middle names, 1 last name). I most commonly use my first and last name alone, which is a stupidly common and easy to pronounce/spell combination. But both of my middle names are longer, less common, and generally harder for people to pronounce or spell. So my joking response is that I started out with 4 given names and decided that I really didn't need 5. So far, that's been an effective way to end the conversation unless I decide I'm willing to keep talking about it.

One other really effective way to help your lack of name change become a non-issue is to just never preemptively bring it up yourself. There are a lot of people in the world who will never know whether or not your current name is the one you were born with, and they will also never think to ask you about it unless you or someone else introduces it as a topic of conversation. So if you just don't bring it up, it won't come up as often (especially once you're a little ways past your wedding, and not talking about getting married or being married quite as much).
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: English1 on February 20, 2015, 10:48:49 AM
I didn't change my name when I married and I found most people reacted 'oh, ok' without much interest, but a few seemed to want to argue about it/convince me otherwise/make comments. Funnily enough those who didn't like my decision were usually people with no right to feel any interest - strangers, work colleagues, acquaintances. Family and friends on the whole didn't care either way (apart from ex-MIL but she was a bit of a character and I basically ignored 99% of what she said about anything).

I agree with some other posters that to some extent you are setting yourself up for an argument with what you are saying. don't say 'I'm keeping my name' as that suggest you are taking an action here, whereas what you are really doing is not taking an action that other people often do. So you are 'not changing my name' instead. I'm not running a marathon tomorrow, I'm not investing in pork bellies, I'm not changing my name. Other people do those things. It's not something I do or are interested in doing. This is boring to me. Can you see the emphasis is a bit different? that can cut down on some of the reactions.

Also please stop justifying your decision with 'for professional reasons'. That really is asking for an argument. It's none of their business why. It's entirely your choice. If it were just a whim, that's ok. In this case, a lot of it has to do with the respective surnames, that's ok. If it were for any of the 100s of reasons, that's ok. If you say 'for professional reasons' then if they are anti women not changing their name, they'll be suggesting using two names, one professionally one socially, or trying to help you find a solution - in time your new name will be your well known professional name, you can still use your qualifications with old name, women always used to change their name and it was ok, I changed my name and I haven't had any professional problems, etc etc.

The comments about the children. Odd. And actually an attempt to manipulate you into doing what they think you ought to be doing - changing your name. Don't see why you really have to respond to that at all. Other than 'well that's a bit of a silly comment' or 'I'm not changing my name' (big smile) to any comments, or 'thank you for your concern beandip beandip'.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: SamiHami on February 20, 2015, 12:39:54 PM
I think one's name is such a personal thing. There's not one cookie cutter answer that works for everyone. Instead of judging each other about these choices we should all just be glad that we're happy and get over it. For me, I took my husband's name. I liked it and I wanted to so I did. I have friends who chose differently and that's cool too. That's as it should be. Busybodies should be shut down as quickly and politely as possible. It's a changing society and people are just going to have to get used to that fact.

I do recall one unpleasant incident years ago, when I was working in an HR capacity. A couple was getting married (both worked there, so I knew them both). Near the time of their wedding I asked her if she would be changing her name, as there would be paperwork to complete if she was. She reacted with such disgust that I would even dare ask her if she'd do something so awful that I pretty much lost all respect for her. It's fine if she didn't want to change it, but I had a valid reason for asking. And her reaction made it clear that she thought less of women who did take their husband's name. And she knew very well that I had; my husband worked there as well and she knew him. It seemed very judgemental and unprofessional to react in such an OTT way.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on February 20, 2015, 12:54:02 PM
I too think it's interesting to hear different people's reasoning. I come from a conservative, traditional family where the woman changing her name is just assumed; but I work in a liberal, diverse place where the woman keeping her name is just assumed. As someone who doesn't like to do what people assume I'll do, I'm torn!  ;D Well, not really, I'm 99% certain I would change my name because that is what I, personally, want to do, but it irritates me so much when people assume everyone goes one way or the other.

Personally I would not get into my reasoning with anyone, unless I really got the strong sense they were just curious, like people in this thread are, and perhaps sharing their reasons for their own choice. Of course a lot of people have a legitimate need to know what your name is, but why you made this or that choice need not be shared or further discussed with anyone who seems judgmental. "That's what works for us," repeated if necessary, is polite and appropriate.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: sulygirl on February 20, 2015, 01:49:27 PM
I have a tendency to feel a "need" to justify because that's what my parents always did and I've learned from the worst.  I'm also an academic and when I get nervous, I feel the need to justify absolutely everything 100x's over because: evidence!

Also, I live in the Midwest in a small town (about 100,000) sort of place and so it's assumed a woman would change her name in the general locality I live.  And yeah, at work, it's assumed if married, she either kept her name or hyphenated it.  But very few "townies" are keeping their names.  Likewise, with 2 Catholic families involved, people tend to ask about this.  My own grandmother has made a thing about it and has, of course, egged people on into asking me.  It's the people you'd expect who would ask.  I have an  aunt who asked about it and then pointed out the thing about his kids and "our kids".  She's the same one who thinks I have made a terrible life decision in not getting a veil and will regret it forever.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: lilfox on February 20, 2015, 02:34:02 PM
If I ever get married, I'm not changing my name.  It's not a statement at all, except maybe that I'm really lazy!  I don't want to do all the paperwork and running around necessary to do it.  If my hypothetical future husband wanted me to change my name, the only way I'd do it is if he did all the legwork to make it as simple and painless as possible for me.   ;D

/quote]

That's what I did.  DH wanted me to change it and I didn't, but I said I will do it if and only if you help me with all the paperwork and come with me to all the places I'd need to go... neither of us felt that strongly after all, so apathy ruled and it didn't happen.   :)  I do go by his last name socially, and that works fine for us.

I got some strongly pro-keep-your-name comments and only a few pro-take-his-name.  One of the latter was a friend's MIL who was very traditional and said something about girls these days not wanting to commit...  Heh.  And here I thought the commitment part was the marriage and not the legal name change.  She couldn't relate to my perspective ("taking his name" was not a thing I cared deeply about) and I couldn't relate to hers ("taking his name" was her happy privilege as his wife), so it was no big deal if she disagreed with me.  Likewise with the OP's aunt and concern about veil regrets - if it's not a thing the OP cares about, regret isn't really a consideration.

I also vote for sticking with short, factual, conversation-ending replies like "That's what works for us" and "We're happy with our decision."  Repeat as necessary.

FWIW, I was able to fill out paperwork with our bank to allow for checks written to lilfox lilname as well as lilfox DHname even though the latter is not my legal name.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Mustard on February 20, 2015, 02:50:34 PM
My daughter kept our family name when she married.  One or two of her husband's relatives questioned her about her decision.  Her answer?  'I know we're married.  You know we're married.  It's nobody else's business'.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: viedejoie on February 20, 2015, 03:36:27 PM
I'm considering changing my name and my mom asked me what about having a different name than my kids, my response was "They call me 'Mom', not "Mrs Smith."  ;)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: gellchom on February 20, 2015, 03:59:07 PM
We each kept our names and gave our kids hyphenated last names.  Oh, how dreary it was listening to several people making the identical "original" clever comment: "Yes, but what happens when they marry someone else with a hyphenated last name?  Four names?!"  Our get-out-of-it-fast answer to that one was (delivered pleasantly, in a you-know-kids way), "I'm sure they'll do exactly what we did: whatever suits them, without worrying about what we or anyone else thinks they should do."  We knew it was the truth, too.

And that's what happened.  Our son kept his hyphenated name, although he only uses the first half (mine) on the radio or TV (he's a broadcaster).  His wife changed hers to the whole hyphenated name, which sure surprised everyone.  Our daughter often used only the second half (DH's) of her name for convenience, and she couldn't wait to change it to her husband's when she got married last year.  I don't blame her -- she went from a 14-letter hyphenated name to a 4-letter one with a cool initial.  No one asked us what we thought, and we didn't care anyway.

We have to deposit checks for her sometimes (she lives overseas but keeps an account here) and have never had any trouble even when they are in her old name.  Just make sure the bank knows it's the same person.  I'm not sure what she did; she might have shown them a marriage certificate or something.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: EllenS on February 20, 2015, 05:12:47 PM
I'm considering changing my name and my mom asked me what about having a different name than my kids, my response was "They call me 'Mom', not "Mrs Smith."  ;)

Now that's a good answer!
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: sulygirl on February 20, 2015, 07:31:14 PM
According to my Dad (an ex-bank-exec), each bank differs on the name change policy.  I will need to check with both of my banks as we have a household account together and a separate account each.  I have a feeling one of them will be okay with it at the very least and we will just deposit them there if we get them.

I like the "they call me mom not Mrs. or Ms. hislastname" comment.  They call me by my first name (obviously), so it's clear who's who.  The STRANGEST exchange we had was with one of his aunts (his mom has 13 siblings and some she almost never sees or talks to despite living 20 minutes from them all due to not getting along with all of them) whom he doesn't see but maybe once every other year.  She commented a lot on our wedding.  We explained politely that we could only invite close family that we see fairly regularly because of our budget and size of reception and we hoped she'd understand.  We never brought up the wedding but she saw my engagement ring and went on a tangent asking a dozen questions.  I wish I would have known about beandip as there was some (it was a potluck FFS!).  She complained about our choice of cake, catering, etc. without even care in the world.  She didn't ask us what we were doing, just went on a tangent.  And then looked at me and said, "So you'll be Mrs. Hislastname" and chuckled rudely.  She does not like DF's father. I said, "No actually, I'm keeping my name but thanks for asking."  And she then went on a tangent about the kids and how will they know what to call me and how will they differentiate me from their mother if even their mother has his last name!

DF wanted to jump in but his father walked up hearing the conversation from some distance despite his hearing impairment and told her basically, "It's not your business at all but DF's ex went back to her maiden name and the kids didn't forget who their mother was."  Also, his kids are 6 and 8.  They are not babies.  How would they forget who their mother was?!  That was BY FAR the strangest exchange we've had regarding the name.  I am thankful I don't have to see her again for a long time.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Dindrane on February 20, 2015, 09:52:41 PM
So if you're mostly getting the question from nosy people who are trying to make a point, don't have any particular need to know the information, and won't let it go when you answer...try really, really hard to come up with some sort of stock phrase that you just repeat until either you decide to walk away or they give up.

Something like, "That's interesting, but I'm not changing my name" might work. But there's something to be said for repeating the same phrase literally verbatim (or close to it) as a way of shutting down a line of inquiry when you aren't able to just walk away from it.

I would also say that, especially at large family gatherings, you should just find someone that you're really anxious to catch up with so that you have a good excuse to just walk away.

Finally, my mom didn't change her last name, so I've had 30 years to deal with being the child of parents who are married but have different last names. It's...basically always been a non-issue. I think maybe some kids might have commented on it when I was in school, maybe? And sometimes my school was just incapable of understanding that Ms. MomLast was actually my mother, even though I was Dindrane DadLast. But that mostly ended with them calling her Mrs. DadLast, and my mom going with it.

I'd say that the two biggest effects of my parents having different last names are that 1) I have become rather fanatical about the fact that leaving my name alone has absolutely nothing at all to do with how I feel about my marriage, and 2) I have decided that my children will get two last names. My mom's last name is one of my middle names, but I have ended up not really using it officially for mostly bureaucratic reasons. There are a lot of reasons why I've decided that my idea is the way I want to go, but it all really boils down to giving our (future) kids both of our last names as their last name is the only thing I've thought up that accurately represents how I think of our family.

My mom told me once that she was sort of intentionally bucking the system a little bit by giving me two middle names. And honestly, rather than being annoyed with her for doing that, I end up being more annoyed with the system that makes that hard to manage in the not-very-common scenarios in which it comes up at all. I think I'd feel the same way if I ran into a situation where someone gave me grief about not having exactly the same last name as my kids, or not having the same last name as my husband. So far, though, it's actually not come up.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Mel the Redcap on February 20, 2015, 10:57:07 PM
I changed my name, for a bunch of reasons... in (vague) order of importance to me, they were: DH liked the idea (but wasn't pressuring me one way or another, which made me more likely to go with what he liked than if he had!), his family name is very uncommon here and I'd like to keep it going rather than having it end with him, and I have no attachment at all to my maiden name (as I regard my biological father with a sort of vague feeling of apathy and Mum remarried and took a different name when I was about 7, then again when I was 15).

My sister, on the other hand, didn't change her name as she has strong feelings about the sexist aspects of people assuming that of course a woman will. But... she doesn't like Ms as a title (not sure why) so uses Mrs instead. She also has five children, but didn't want them 'tied' to just their father or mother by picking one surname, and the combination of surnames with her first husband wasn't particularly euphonious, so... each child has his or her own surname, picked to go well with their first and middle names.

It works better than you might think! There's a certain amount of explanation involved all. the. time., of course, so anyone who isn't up for polite repetition would be well advised to steer clear of this option, but the worst problem it's caused (that I know of) is that when the oldest three were going to a school that usually only sent notices and so forth home with the oldest child of each family they'd get multiple copies of everything.

(Um. Er. And their aunt - me - can't remember the surnames of the younger two off the top of her head. Heh.)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on February 21, 2015, 09:57:35 PM
My sister, on the other hand, didn't change her name as she has strong feelings about the sexist aspects of people assuming that of course a woman will. But... she doesn't like Ms as a title (not sure why) so uses Mrs instead. She also has five children, but didn't want them 'tied' to just their father or mother by picking one surname, and the combination of surnames with her first husband wasn't particularly euphonious, so... each child has his or her own surname, picked to go well with their first and middle names.

That is very interesting. My friend Jane Johnson married Dan Davis and kept her name. They have two boys (born after they were married) and the first one is Timmy Davis, while the second one is Joey Johnson. So in the household there are two people named Johnson and two named Davis. I've never actually heard of someone else doing something similar before.

I will tell you guys here honestly that I think what my friend did is silly. But, she never asked me and I never told her, because it's none of my business. And when someone else told her they thought it was silly, I was mad on her behalf, because it wasn't their business either. I happen to not think it was an awesome idea and I won't be copying it myself or advising others to do so, but that doesn't mean her choice should be belittled--she thought it out well and it's obviously very important to her.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Outdoor Girl on February 22, 2015, 11:19:22 AM
My SIL kept her name.  Their boys are hyphenated.  They actually considered changing the name order for the second one so that everyone in the family would have a different name.  I was very glad they decided against that.

Now, though, at least the older one is likely to change his name to just my family name because he has not interest in maintaining contact with his mother.  There is a lot of back story, but in my opinion, the cut is very well deserved.  The younger one still sees her, though I think he does it more out of a sense of obligation than any real desire to do so.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: EllenS on February 22, 2015, 03:27:33 PM
I wonder, are the folks where each family member has an individual surname tolerant of those who literally can't keep up? Or are they snippy about it?

I know for a fact that my defective memory would never be able to keep 4 different surnames in the same household straight, especially if it were something very "lysdexic" like swapping the order of a hyphenated name. I have trouble calling my own 2 kids by the correct first names.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: greencat on February 22, 2015, 04:06:11 PM
I wonder, are the folks where each family member has an individual surname tolerant of those who literally can't keep up? Or are they snippy about it?

I know for a fact that my defective memory would never be able to keep 4 different surnames in the same household straight, especially if it were something very "lysdexic" like swapping the order of a hyphenated name. I have trouble calling my own 2 kids by the correct first names.

Hi, Mom!  One time, I got called the names of six cats, the dog, and my brother before my mom actually called me my own name  8)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on February 22, 2015, 06:09:18 PM
I wonder, are the folks where each family member has an individual surname tolerant of those who literally can't keep up? Or are they snippy about it?

I know for a fact that my defective memory would never be able to keep 4 different surnames in the same household straight, especially if it were something very "lysdexic" like swapping the order of a hyphenated name. I have trouble calling my own 2 kids by the correct first names.

I'm wondering about that with my friend where her two kids have two different last names, on purpose. Again, none of my business, and it's cool that she was able to come up with a solution that reflected her values. But, she's also a very particular person, about many things including names--not a laid-back bone in her body. She's called by her first and middle names together, like Mary Jane, and is very quick to correct anyone who just calls her Mary, or misspells any part (and quick to complain if she has to correct them more than once). Her kids are very young right now, but I feel like once they start interacting with the wider world, there is going to be a certain level of confusion, and just personality-wise, I don't see her handling that well.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Ryuugan80 on February 22, 2015, 06:18:35 PM
If you're still looking for suggestions,  I'd go for saying,  very cheerily,  "Aww! Thanks for worrying about us, but we've got this!  Bean dip?" Ideally changing the subject to something else that you don't really care about but the target can talk at length (and thus be distracted easily) about.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: daen on February 23, 2015, 08:43:36 AM
My sister, on the other hand, didn't change her name as she has strong feelings about the sexist aspects of people assuming that of course a woman will. But... she doesn't like Ms as a title (not sure why) so uses Mrs instead. She also has five children, but didn't want them 'tied' to just their father or mother by picking one surname, and the combination of surnames with her first husband wasn't particularly euphonious, so... each child has his or her own surname, picked to go well with their first and middle names.

That is very interesting. My friend Jane Johnson married Dan Davis and kept her name. They have two boys (born after they were married) and the first one is Timmy Davis, while the second one is Joey Johnson. So in the household there are two people named Johnson and two named Davis. I've never actually heard of someone else doing something similar before.

I will tell you guys here honestly that I think what my friend did is silly. But, she never asked me and I never told her, because it's none of my business. And when someone else told her they thought it was silly, I was mad on her behalf, because it wasn't their business either. I happen to not think it was an awesome idea and I won't be copying it myself or advising others to do so, but that doesn't mean her choice should be belittled--she thought it out well and it's obviously very important to her.

There's a couple I met who decided that each of them would keep their birth surname. The female children would be given the mother's surname, and the boys would get the father's surname. I would have sooner chosen to alternate surnames, had I gone down that road, but it wasn't my call.

Anyway, it's all moot now, as there were no children, and the couple is now divorced.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: lowspark on February 23, 2015, 03:44:51 PM
I will tell you guys here honestly that I think what my friend did is silly. But, she never asked me and I never told her, because it's none of my business.

This is where I stand. I've heard of all kinds of ways people have handled name changing or not, and naming kids. And yeah, there are times I just think, "what were they thinking?" But I just think it. I don't say it. And particularly not to them! It's none of my business at all.

But here's where the "what about the kids" question irks me the most. I have two children from my first marriage. When I remarried, I took my new husband's last name. So there you go. Mom & kids have different last names. Happens all the time. It's just not all that unusual nowadays when there are so many different models of families.

Some people who knew my kids might call me Mrs. ExName, mostly teachers and the like, and that was fine. My current husband got called Mr. ExName once or twice by someone who only knew the kids and assumed. He didn't much care. Not a big deal in the grand scheme of things.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: ladyknight1 on February 23, 2015, 03:56:09 PM
The biggest issues I have seen is when a person uses a different name than their legal name which eventually makes things complicated. Next to us at the DMV last fall was a lady who had gotten married, had not changed her name legally on the marriage license, but started using her DH' last name for work, personal use. This lady was very irate that the DMV clerk couldn't change her driver's license to the DH last name.

In my work in higher education, this is a frequent issue. Someone applies as first name last name and all of their educational records and tax documents are under first name married last-last name. It can cause real issues. My advice is to be consistent and to make any changes legal.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Ginger G on February 24, 2015, 09:50:32 AM
I got married a year and a half ago, and maybe it's because I got married in my 40s, but not one single person has questioned me as to why I didn't change my name.  I found myself offering explanations though, which were 1) Laziness/too difficult to change my name on everything and 2) I like my last name, and I think it sounds better with my first name.  I do use my husband's name on Facebook along with my 'real' last name though. 
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Ponydoc on February 24, 2015, 10:52:16 AM
The only people who have cared, so far, that I didn't change my name have been: my DH's cousin who we see once a year, and the lady at the cable company  :o.  However, my MIL insists on sending all correspondance to: Mr & Mrs. [DH's First name] [DH's Last name], or my favorite: Dr. & Mrs. [DH's First name] [DH's last name].  Despite the fact that I am also a Dr (twice over actually), and she is aware that I didn't change my name.  For now I just silently get annoyed and roll with it.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on February 24, 2015, 11:23:33 AM
My friend Jane Johnson, who married Dan Davis and didn't change her name, does occasionally get his sisters addressing her as Mrs. Davis and Jane Davis. I do recall that at their wedding, the DJ announced them incorrectly as Mr. and Mrs. Davis; but other than that snafu, she has always made it clear her name did not change. Their return address labels read "Johnson and Davis," for example. So it's her belief and mine that they are being pointed and rude, trying to tell her that she ought to have changed her name. Which is par for the course with the sisters, they seem to be overall dysfunctional and drama-seeking.

I tend to be sensitive to names, though. I want to make sure I address someone correctly, and spell their name right. I know a lot of people who are just more oblivious to that sort of thing. They don't willfully think, "I'm going to call Victoria Vicki, even though she said Victoria, because I like it better." They don't consciously think about it at all, and somewhere in their subconscious they're going, "Victoria... Vicki... Most people I know do that... Can't remember..."
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: AliciaLynette on February 24, 2015, 01:14:04 PM
I wonder, are the folks where each family member has an individual surname tolerant of those who literally can't keep up? Or are they snippy about it?

I know for a fact that my defective memory would never be able to keep 4 different surnames in the same household straight, especially if it were something very "lysdexic" like swapping the order of a hyphenated name. I have trouble calling my own 2 kids by the correct first names.

Hi, Mom!  One time, I got called the names of six cats, the dog, and my brother before my mom actually called me my own name  8)

When my dad found himself calling me by the name of the dog that had died three years before I was born (I was 8 or 9 at the time), he gave up and reverted to breed names plus descriptors for everyone (dog, cat, other cat, black cow, red cow, child, etc). Mum wasn't impressed, but as he said, with 3 daughters, lots of animals and too many hobbies, it was good if he remembered his own name!!
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Browyn on February 24, 2015, 06:20:41 PM
Make it a joke.  "I'm keeping my name."  Why? "I don't want to have to learn to spell LongGermanicLastName."

For those with the kid questions, just say "Well, if we have kids, they'll take my name, of course.  It's easier to spell!"

I found this approach worked best for me - although I was dealing with the flip side.  I got married at 37, and I have a professional career, and I changed my name.  All the reasonable explainations did no good, nor did not giving them any reason.  "I moved up in the alphabet and don't have to spell it for people" did :-)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: lmyrs on March 10, 2015, 01:47:39 PM
The only people who have cared, so far, that I didn't change my name have been: my DH's cousin who we see once a year, and the lady at the cable company  :o.  However, my MIL insists on sending all correspondance to: Mr & Mrs. [DH's First name] [DH's Last name], or my favorite: Dr. & Mrs. [DH's First name] [DH's last name].  Despite the fact that I am also a Dr (twice over actually), and she is aware that I didn't change my name.  For now I just silently get annoyed and roll with it.

My sister in law does this to us. I just don't open it. I leave it for DH since it's his name on the envelope. Hopefully, it's not important, because DH opens his mail every few months.

(And, I told all of the ILs that I don't open mail addressed to Mrs. DH because it's not me. So, SIL has no excuse.)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Ms_Cellany on March 10, 2015, 02:08:00 PM
My birth name was "Melisandre Cellany Brown," as I was named after my father's godmother, "Melisandre Cellany." In the '80s, I legally dropped the last name to become "Melisandre Cellany" (partly because the name was much cooler than "Brown").

When The Sweetie and I got married, neither of us felt strongly about having the same name, plus I knew from experience that the paperwork is a hassle, so we kept our own names.

But our last names begin with the same letter. We joke that we sound like a law firm.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Thipu1 on March 11, 2015, 10:49:54 AM
Niece was married for ten years and had two children before I learned that she kept her maiden name.  All this time, we'd been addressing cards and gifts to 'Jane and John (his last name).  That's perfectly fine and she never corrected us but we still felt slightly bad even though we honestly didn't know. 

Niece's maiden name is close to the name of an animal. Think 'Katz' or 'Foxx'.  I found a nice pair of earrings with her animal and we sent them to her with a little note of apology.  We received a  phone call of thanks and we had a good laugh about the long-standing misunderstanding.

Moral:  if you're keeping your maiden name, let people know because we want to do the right thing.

 
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: gellchom on March 11, 2015, 11:36:26 AM
Niece was married for ten years and had two children before I learned that she kept her maiden name.  All this time, we'd been addressing cards and gifts to 'Jane and John (his last name).  That's perfectly fine and she never corrected us but we still felt slightly bad even though we honestly didn't know. 

Niece's maiden name is close to the name of an animal. Think 'Katz' or 'Foxx'.  I found a nice pair of earrings with her animal and we sent them to her with a little note of apology.  We received a  phone call of thanks and we had a good laugh about the long-standing misunderstanding.

Moral:  if you're keeping your maiden name, let people know because we want to do the right thing.
I agree.  Will you accept a "friendly amendment" to include those changing their names? 

I know you absolutely meant no offense.  But you made the assumption that your niece was changing her name.  That might've been a safe assumption prior to the 1970s or so, but even where it is less common to keep your own (I don't like the term "maiden"; it's inaccurate) it's not so unheard of as to justify the opposite assumption.  So I always ask. 

How do you think people should let people know?  I haven't seen an "at home" card in ... I am not sure I've ever seen one.

I didn't do anything special or formal.  Most people figure it out okay.  I'm surprised that in ten years you never saw your niece's name on any correspondence, birth announcements, thank you notes, etc., even if just part of the return address. 

I absolutely love your clever apology gift!  What a lovely gesture.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: turnip on March 11, 2015, 12:10:13 PM
My maiden name is clearly displayed on social media sites and in my email address.  Despite this I have ILs that continuously address me as <first name> <married name>.  I just laugh it off - they're set in their ways, I'm not going to change any minds.

However I'm frequently tempted to 'accidentally' address them as Mr. and Mrs. <her maiden name>.  "Oh, I'm sorry, it's so hard to keep track these days!" <smile>.

I wonder how they'd react.   ;-)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: daen on March 11, 2015, 12:58:53 PM
In my circles, I'm seeing couples "announce" their name choice by putting their contact information in the program or on a wedding favor (like a fridge magnet). On a program, it would be something like this:

Our New Address
Jane Johnson and Bill Brown
321 Main Street
Anytown, Province  X1X 1X1

(plus whatever email addresses and phone numbers you want to supply).

Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on March 11, 2015, 02:31:11 PM
In my circles, I'm seeing couples "announce" their name choice by putting their contact information in the program or on a wedding favor (like a fridge magnet). On a program, it would be something like this:

Our New Address
Jane Johnson and Bill Brown
321 Main Street
Anytown, Province  X1X 1X1

(plus whatever email addresses and phone numbers you want to supply).

Yes, that's how I would do it. Something given/sent/announced around the time of the wedding, when it will be on people's minds. Also, I always double-check return address labels when I receive cards from people, to make sure I've been addressing them correctly.

If a lot of people are making the same assumption and it's never corrected, or only very subtly, I can see how it might be missed. I've also noticed that on social media/email, a lot of people don't put their "true, legal" name, so I don't go by that 100%. For example, one person I'm Facebook friends with goes by just her first and middle names there, as she doesn't want to be identified by her very unusual last name. Conversely, I know other people (women) who are on Facebook as Linda Brown Johnson, Brown being her birth name and Johnson her married name, so people who just know her as Linda Brown can still find her. But she doesn't go by "Linda Brown Johnson" in any other context, and it would be weird to address a card to her that way.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Danika on March 12, 2015, 01:09:53 AM
When I got married (a decade ago), I was on the fence as to whether or not I should take DH's last name. So I did. And then for the first year we were married, every time I heard someone refer to me as my new name, or worse yet, when I had to call people and identify myself as my new name, I got sick to my stomach. Not because his name was bad but because I really identified with my maiden name. My first name (IRL, not Danika) is a very common name for my generation. In college, there were 8 of us on my floor of the dorm. So we all went by our last names. And that's what I was called for 4 years of undergrad and by my closest friends for years after that. I couldn't believe I had talked myself into moving that into the position of my middle name.

So, I legally changed my name again! Now, I have my maiden name back as my last name.

Mostly, I had originally taken DH's last name because I thought it would be easier for our children's teachers. But we didn't have children. So I'd done it for the convenience of teachers of hypothetical children who had not been conceived yet!!!

When I went back to my maiden name, I told myself that if we ever did have kids and their teachers got confused, they would be welcome to call me Mrs. DHsLastname if they wanted to. I don't really care what strangers call me. It's when I call people on the phone and identify myself, I want to say a name that I feel is *me*. I hadn't felt like *myself* for a full year because I'd changed my name.

The only people who have ever really commented on it were:

1) our realtor for our house who told DH that he didn't think I was fully committed to the marriage (at this point I was 8 months pregnant and we were buying our second home) because his first wife never took his last name and then she divorced him. It's worth noting that his second wife did take his last name, but she also divorced him.

2) my uncle's wife who is the only one in our family of that generation who hyphenated her name instead of taking her husband's last name. She told me I *should* take my husband's last name. I'm still trying to figure that hypocrisy out. I think she felt like she wanted to keep her maiden name but family twisted her arm and made her add her husband's last name, so she couldn't let another woman do what she didn't have the ability to do - resist pressure.

sulygirl, my personal responses to the questions you mentioned would be as follows:

"Oh, you will be a Mrs. Hislastname soon"
Me: "No, actually, I'm keeping my name." <- Statement. No JADEing. Totally flat tone without defensiveness or any other emotion.

"Well, what message does that send to his children?"
Me: "That we don't live in the 1800s and women can make their own choices."

"What about your children?"
Me: "They'll still be my children."

At this point, you'll know if you're talking to someone who is truly curious or who is just trying to be condescending. You don't need to keep engaging with someone who is being condescending. Just look unamused by anything they try to insult you with and don't engage further. Just excuse yourself and walk away.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: CakeEater on March 12, 2015, 05:47:34 AM
When I got married (a decade ago), I was on the fence as to whether or not I should take DH's last name. So I did. And then for the first year we were married, every time I heard someone refer to me as my new name, or worse yet, when I had to call people and identify myself as my new name, I got sick to my stomach. Not because his name was bad but because I really identified with my maiden name.

Isn't it funny how we're all different?

I thought I would find it hard to adjust to a new surname, but I didn't at all. I'm a teacher, so am referred to by my surname all day, every day at school. And I was completely used to being 'Mrs McGahan' rather than 'Miss Jones' in no time at all.

I think I mistakenly identified myself by my maiden name once, and that was it. Now I find using my maiden name for anything slightly odd.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on March 12, 2015, 10:44:08 AM
I've no potential to make a change anytime soon, but I'm 98% certain I would change my name to my husband's. Probably the only thing that would stop me was if my future husband was very much against it. I think it would make me feel like we were united, and would be an outward symbol that something had really changed about me. That's very much my personal preference though; I tend to be a little more old-fashioned in my personal values and behaviors compared to my peers, but in many things I really don't care what other people do. With a name, just make it clear so I can address you properly!

I have a very common first and last name (I was just mixed up with other people named Lynn Miller the other day) and, although I like the anonymity they afford and would be pleased to change my name to something equally common (like Lynn Brown or Lynn Smith), I've always found it hard to be like, "Yeah, I'm a Miller!" Well, so are millions of other people, most of whom aren't related to me at all! I remember a long time ago, my dad and I were helping my older cousin (a Miller) move to college, and she confessed that she was "worried about letting down the Miller name." She was very sincere, and of course feeling nervous about this big change in her life; but I remember thinking that was one of the most bizarre things I'd ever heard a person say, because that consideration was entirely foreign to me.

I've never had strong group loyalty anyway, like to schools or the town where I grew up. I've been at my university for almost 20 years now, as a student and staff member, and I still don't own anything with the school logo or explicitly in the school colors. The idea of doing so actively turns me off, in fact.

I can see how I might feel differently if I had a much more distinct name. And obviously some people with common names (like my cousin) still identify strongly with them. I do like reading the different perspectives.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Diane AKA Traska on March 12, 2015, 12:00:07 PM
"Oh, that will be simple. Our children would have the surnames Sulygirlsdotter and Sulyhusbandsson, but thanks for the concern."
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: gellchom on March 12, 2015, 12:17:52 PM
I'm 98% certain I would change my name to my husband's....I think it would make me feel like we were united, and would be an outward symbol that something had really changed about me.

An excellent reason for your husband to take your name!  :)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on March 12, 2015, 01:01:25 PM
I'm 98% certain I would change my name to my husband's....I think it would make me feel like we were united, and would be an outward symbol that something had really changed about me.

An excellent reason for your husband to take your name!  :)

Ha ha! :) I do sometimes "worry" about what if the last name is really awful (IMO)--something that sounds ugly or like a rude word, or just is hard for my mom to say, or sounds funny with my first name. Lynn Lin? I think of Lauren Bush Lauren... Who thought with the first name of Lauren, she would manage to meet and marry someone whose last name was Lauren?

That's really pretty low on my list of worries, though. ;)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Danika on March 12, 2015, 01:28:22 PM
I knew a couple who both hated their own last names. They looked back into their family trees and found a last name that they had in common that was short, easy to spell and they both liked. They both changed their names to that when they got married.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Ms_Cellany on March 12, 2015, 01:58:33 PM
Two friends of mine had last names that started with the same letter - let's say "T."

They both changed their names to a phonetic version of the letter - let's say "Teague."
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: gellchom on March 13, 2015, 09:22:31 AM
I'm 98% certain I would change my name to my husband's....I think it would make me feel like we were united, and would be an outward symbol that something had really changed about me.

An excellent reason for your husband to take your name!  :)

Ha ha! :) I do sometimes "worry" about what if the last name is really awful (IMO)--something that sounds ugly or like a rude word, or just is hard for my mom to say, or sounds funny with my first name. Lynn Lin? I think of Lauren Bush Lauren... Who thought with the first name of Lauren, she would manage to meet and marry someone whose last name was Lauren?

That's really pretty low on my list of worries, though. ;)

We all know a few people with such situations -- and I know a few who married people with the same or very similar last names.

My point was that there is a flaw in the argument that women should* change their names when they marry as a statement of change of identity and of the unity of the couple: no one ever says that men should change their names, or criticizes them for not doing so, for those reasons, but the identical reasoning applies.  Like people who insist that "Ms." is just for business (it isn't and never was), and you must use "Miss" or "Mrs." socially, because "how else can you tell whether she is married"?  The whole point of it is that you can't, because you shouldn't need to, just as you don't need to know a man's marital status from his honorific.  The only reason you would need to know it for a woman is if you believe that a woman's identity --but not a man's -- is defined by her marital status, or that etiquette requires her to announce her availability status in her name.  Well, same here -- if a woman is somehow diminishing the importance of her marriage by not changing her name, why isn't a man for not changing his?

*I hasten to add that Lynn2000 most certainly did *not* say that women *should* change their names, for this or any other reason, just that she herself thinks she probably would, and for this reason.  Unless the name is a real clunker!   :)  And of course not all women who do change their names think that everyone should, or that everyone should use "Mrs." or "Miss."  I am thinking only of the people such as those described by posters in this string who insist on calling women by their husband's last names even when they have no reason to believe (and often every reason not to believe) that the woman uses his name rather than her own.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on March 13, 2015, 09:43:28 AM
Oh, I totally agree. My main opinion is that people should get to choose what they want, and not be pressured by other people. I know what my own choice would be, and I would be mad if someone in my life tried to be like, "But why would you change your name? Won't you lose your identity and sense of self?" (in a disapproving tone) No, *I* won't. Maybe the other person would, and that's exactly why they should not change their name. But them pressuring me, is exactly the same as other people who pressured them from the other direction.

I think the only bad reasons for changing/not changing a name, are if 1) you truly don't realize your options, or 2) you are giving into pressure from others. Or maybe if you yourself look back and regret your decision and think your reasons were silly. Kind of like in the "silly reasons you dumped someone" thread--on the surface the reasons may sound silly to others, but often they reflect a deeper dissatisfaction with the relationship, and being made to feel like you must have "good" reasons, suggests that the default is to be in a relationship, and that you need a special exception to be/get out of one. Which to my mind is a dangerous and rude way of thinking.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: gellchom on March 13, 2015, 01:04:02 PM
Lynn2000, you are so wise and so articulate.  If we didn't have you, we would have to invent you.

I may just need to start a string on that.   :)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynn2000 on March 13, 2015, 01:20:02 PM
Lynn2000, you are so wise and so articulate.  If we didn't have you, we would have to invent you.

I may just need to start a string on that.   :)

Why thank you!  ;D You're very kind.

I have a couple friends who took their husbands' last names, because their birth names were long, unwieldy, and hard to pronounce, and they married men who had shorter, easier names. Like Knollheimer (the K is pronounced) versus Taylor. I could see how some people with the name Knollheimer might take great pride in it, though--like, "We know it's tough, but we love it!"

On the other hand, one reason another friend kept her last name, and gave it to one (but not both) of their children, was because she felt like the name would be lost otherwise. It's not a unique name, it's along the lines of Hamilton, but her particular branch of the family in the US has always been small and most of her cousins are female, and took their husbands' last names. It really looked like unless she took a stand and insisted on passing Hamilton on to one of her kids, the Hamilton name would end with her generation. And that was something very important to her, that she worried about. So right now, one of her sons has the surname Hamilton (the other has his father's surname); her one male cousin had a late-in-life son surnamed Hamilton; and her sister's son is Hamilton-Brown. Her Hamilton son is the oldest, though. Of course she also had other reasons for keeping the name herself, but I thought that was an interesting consideration, as that's not something I personally have ever worried about.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: greencat on March 13, 2015, 11:05:42 PM
I've often joked that I will take my husband's last name as long as it's higher in the alphabet than mine - I was very tired as a kid of being the last in line all the time!

In reality, I'm highly unlikely to change my name when I marry.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: norrina on March 14, 2015, 01:10:51 AM
I got chastised the other day for taking my husband's name. I don't even remember how the topic came up, but some of the back story to the name change was shared. Mainly, that I chose to take DH's name.

I took my 1st husband's name because he threw a fit, and always regretted it. I also found changing all my records to be a royal pain in the tuckus. So DH expected that I would keep my maiden name and was 100% supportive of that. But after we starting actually planning the wedding my heart told me I wanted to share DH, and DSS', name. No real qualifiable reason, just an intuition that this was going to be my love message to them and it would go deeper than just changing some letters. And I actually ended up going through the courts for a legal name change 9 months before the wedding, because I was starting a my own business in a new profession and knew that I wasn't going to want to change my professional identity after 9 months of marketing but also knew that I was going to want to take DH and DSS' name. There were definitely a lot of people that didn't quite know what to make of that maneuver, but it felt right to me, and I don't have any regrets.

Nonetheless, the chastiser apparently is heavily involved in women's rights and felt like I wasn't exercising my rights by following the sexist tradition of taking my husband's name. I tried to explain that part of exercising my rights was choosing what I wanted to do, and that I had wanted to take his name, but she wasn't having any of it and luckily some lovely bean dip came by because my etiquette still needs some work when my decisions are personally insulted.


Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: ladyknight1 on March 14, 2015, 09:56:26 AM
My maiden last name is one that is associated with a religious icon of a religion I don't belong to. I was constantly teased in a bad way as a child and teenager. It is also very low in the alphabet.

My DH has an awesome last name that is much higher in the alphabet and after using it for 17 years, it fits me better than my maiden name ever did. No regrets.

It is a very individual choice, and I don't see how anyone outside the happy couple has any say in it.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Tea Drinker on March 14, 2015, 11:21:19 AM
I never seriously considered taking my husband's last name, nor did he want me to. I have told more than one person that I'd offered him the chance to take my name, and he'd said no. (We both have names that are regularly misspelled.) That tends to stop the conversation, because most of the "you should do it because" reasons that people give women for why we should change our names imply but don't actually say that only women should change their names when they get married. Anything from "the couple should have the same name" to "but what about your children's names?" is resolved equally well by John Smith taking Jane Doe's surname as the other way around. In our specific case, it would have put me earlier in the alphabet, but on average it's as likely to put the name-changer later in the alphabet.

That doesn't mean you, as an individual, shouldn't change your name--and that's true regardless of your gender or the gender of the person you're marrying. (I know one woman who took her wife's name, and two mixed-sex couples where both parties combined their surnames.) But it might be useful if you're a woman who is being pressured to change her name and doesn't want to: along with bean dipping, you could brightly say "I never thought of that! You've got a point, and fiance probably should take my name. Do you want to tell him, or should I pass this along?"
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: artk2002 on May 15, 2015, 07:03:50 PM
I know you absolutely meant no offense.  But you made the assumption that your niece was changing her name.  That might've been a safe assumption prior to the 1970s or so, but even where it is less common to keep your own (I don't like the term "maiden"; it's inaccurate) it's not so unheard of as to justify the opposite assumption.  So I always ask. 

It's still a very safe assumption. I just read some research that said only about 8% of women keep their names. It peaked in the 90's at 23%.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/14/changing-your-last-name_n_3073125.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/14/changing-your-last-name_n_3073125.html)

That said, it's much better if everyone communicate their intentions, but if someone doesn't communicate, changing is still a safe assumption.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Dindrane on May 15, 2015, 07:15:37 PM
I would imagine that the percentage of women who retain their birth name upon marriage has a fair amount of variation among different groups of people. Among the women I know in my personal life who are married, I'd say no more than 50% of them changed their names (and the percentage of name changes is lower among people in my own generation), so I personally wouldn't consider it to be a safe assumption.

Among people I know at work who are married, the majority of them changed their names legally. But, even then, I work in HR so I assume nothing. :) At most, I'll ask someone who has told me they are getting married if they plan to change their name, but only so that I can tell them how such a thing is done in our system if they do plan to change it.

I'm sure that other people with different social circles who live in different areas of the country/world have different anecdotal experiences, so I wouldn't be likely to apply my experience particularly universally. Especially since the absolute biggest reason why I personally never assume a woman will change her name upon marriage is because I personally didn't change mine.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: gellchom on May 15, 2015, 11:26:58 PM
I agree. That Huffpost article was just the results of one small survey anyway, not an actual report of the real percentages anywhere. 

But even if it really were, it still wouldn't matter, because national (?  The article doesn't say) averages don't tell you anything about any community.  Like Dindrane, I can report that a far higher percentage of my baby boomer peers didn't change their names.  And I'm sure it varies with geography and ethnicity, too. 

Averages are always misleading, and even where we have a pretty good confidence low number, I disagree that assumptions are safe.  Would you say it's a safe assumption that someone is heterosexual?  Christian?  Fertile? 
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Miss Understood on May 16, 2015, 12:17:16 AM
I knew when I got married that both my family and DH's family would not get the idea of me not changing my name, so I am fine with them calling me Mrs. DHname because you just can't fight it.  The thing that has confused me is that friends who *have themselves not changed their names and made a point of it and know that I did not either* still address correspondence to us as "Mr. and Mrs. [DH's last name]."  Or using our first names rather than the honorifics but still assuming his last name for us both. I can't really wrap my mind around that one since I try to respect their non-name-changing choices when I address them.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: greencat on May 16, 2015, 02:07:55 AM
My parents weren't even married and people tended to just assume they were and call her Mrs. Dad'slast.  Only, she was Ms. Her-ex-husband's-last, since she never changed her name back after they divorced (she was still close to his family, closer than he was.)  It was a bit confusing, but better than her being Miss Her-maiden-name, which is just long and hard to spell.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: TootsNYC on June 12, 2015, 09:29:52 AM
I knew when I got married that both my family and DH's family would not get the idea of me not changing my name, so I am fine with them calling me Mrs. DHname because you just can't fight it.  The thing that has confused me is that friends who *have themselves not changed their names and made a point of it and know that I did not either* still address correspondence to us as "Mr. and Mrs. [DH's last name]."  Or using our first names rather than the honorifics but still assuming his last name for us both. I can't really wrap my mind around that one since I try to respect their non-name-changing choices when I address them.

They're lazy.

It's also possible that they know your ILs' family uses the old-fashioned form, and that they think you've kept your name professionally but changed it socially.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: SamiHami on June 23, 2015, 01:50:15 PM
We all know a few people with such situations -- and I know a few who married people with the same or very similar last names.

If I had married a man with the same last name as my own, I would totally hyphenate! "Hello! I'm Sami Hami-Hami! How do you do?"  ;D
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Browyn on June 23, 2015, 05:57:27 PM
I'm 98% certain I would change my name to my husband's....I think it would make me feel like we were united, and would be an outward symbol that something had really changed about me.

An excellent reason for your husband to take your name!  :)

Ha ha! :) I do sometimes "worry" about what if the last name is really awful (IMO)--something that sounds ugly or like a rude word, or just is hard for my mom to say, or sounds funny with my first name. Lynn Lin? I think of Lauren Bush Lauren... Who thought with the first name of Lauren, she would manage to meet and marry someone whose last name was Lauren?

That's really pretty low on my list of worries, though. ;)

I had a friend in college whose last name was the same as my first, he suggested one evening (after a couple of long island ice teas) that if we got married I could be like Jeannie Jeannie on I dream of Jeannie.  We moved his drink away from him (lol) 
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: lmyrs on August 20, 2015, 04:16:05 PM
I know you absolutely meant no offense.  But you made the assumption that your niece was changing her name.  That might've been a safe assumption prior to the 1970s or so, but even where it is less common to keep your own (I don't like the term "maiden"; it's inaccurate) it's not so unheard of as to justify the opposite assumption.  So I always ask. 

It's still a very safe assumption. I just read some research that said only about 8% of women keep their names. It peaked in the 90's at 23%.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/14/changing-your-last-name_n_3073125.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/14/changing-your-last-name_n_3073125.html)

That said, it's much better if everyone communicate their intentions, but if someone doesn't communicate, changing is still a safe assumption.

That survey is really flawed. The questions were: (all italics mine)

(1) Should a woman take her husband's name? (Should is loaded. The options for this question were for you to say that a woman should or should not or you weren't sure. There was no option to say that you thought she should do whatever she wants, including hyphenation.)
(2) Should a man be allowed to take his wife's name? (That's a bonkers question. A man can change his name to Mr. Johnny Tightpants if he wants to. There's no reason he can't change his last name to anything he wants, even if it is his wife's name.)
(3) How do you feel about couples who hyphenate their last names? (Not women, or men, but couples who both hyphenate.)

I'd like to see actual numbers on women who changed their names to their husband's last names, versus kept their married name or hyphenated. Because every study I've ever seen on the subject asked simply whether the woman changed her name after marriage or not. And, the number is very high (around 80% in Canada). But I changed my name after marriage. But not to my husband's name. I hyphenated. And, I would be included in that 80%. But most people reading it assume that 80% took their husband's name and 20% didn't. When in reality 20% kept their own name and 80% either hyphenated or took a different name (maybe their husband's or maybe a combination or maybe something completely new). And people use these stats in order to justify saying things like, "Well 80% of woman are Mrs. John Smith so it's a perfectly valid assumption to make."

(PS - Not that I think that Art was saying that at all. It's just something that I run into a lot and it's a huge sore spot for me.)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: gellchom on August 20, 2015, 10:51:36 PM
Even if the 80% figure were accurate, it still wouldn't justify an assumption (a guess, yes, but not an assumption), just as one cannot blithely assume a person is white, Christian, heterosexual, a college graduate, right-handed, etc.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: mmswm on August 21, 2015, 02:30:10 AM
I chose to take my (now ex) husband's name for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that I absolutely detest my maiden name.  When we got divorced, I chose not to restore my maiden name for both that reason, and by that time I had three kids and it was just easier to all have the same name.  I've been asked what I'd do if I ever got married again.  My usual response is to quote a joke I read once that said "A truly enlightened man doesn't mind when his wife chooses to keep her name...from her first marriage."  Funnily enough, my boyfriend now would be totally okay with that, if this ever leads in that direction.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Wintergreen on August 21, 2015, 03:53:54 AM
I chose to take my (now ex) husband's name for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that I absolutely detest my maiden name.  When we got divorced, I chose not to restore my maiden name for both that reason, and by that time I had three kids and it was just easier to all have the same name.  I've been asked what I'd do if I ever got married again.  My usual response is to quote a joke I read once that said "A truly enlightened man doesn't mind when his wife chooses to keep her name...from her first marriage."  Funnily enough, my boyfriend now would be totally okay with that, if this ever leads in that direction.
I think quite many actually might be, considering there are kids (especially if they are young still). So even if person otherwise would prefer that woman takes his name, even some of those might see the reason for mother to keep the same name with young kids :D

We are both going to keep our own names. I don't want to change it, fiance does not want to change it. Neither of us has any super rare or special last name, both are kind of nice though. I do have one extra reason not to change my name, but :D I don't want to write it even here (paranoid much).
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: mmswm on August 21, 2015, 05:50:42 AM
My kids are all teenagers, so them being young wouldn't be an issue. He was actually reading over my shoulder when I posted that. He shrugged and said he's always known me by this name and it would honestly be a little weird for him to think of me by his name. In fact, that was precisely the reason his late wife kept her name when they got married*. She didn't have any strong feelings one way or another, and he preferred she keep her name, so she went with his preference. She did have some second thoughts after they had kids, but she eventually resolved that conflict.

*He married his wife in 1976, before I was even a year old. She passed away in 1998, long before I ever met him and when their kids were only 13 years old, so I only have his version of events to go by. That said, I have no reason not to believe him.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Jaelle on October 29, 2015, 06:30:58 PM
I think one's name is such a personal thing. There's not one cookie cutter answer that works for everyone. Instead of judging each other about these choices we should all just be glad that we're happy and get over it. For me, I took my husband's name. I liked it and I wanted to so I did. I have friends who chose differently and that's cool too. That's as it should be. Busybodies should be shut down as quickly and politely as possible. It's a changing society and people are just going to have to get used to that fact.

I do recall one unpleasant incident years ago, when I was working in an HR capacity. A couple was getting married (both worked there, so I knew them both). Near the time of their wedding I asked her if she would be changing her name, as there would be paperwork to complete if she was. She reacted with such disgust that I would even dare ask her if she'd do something so awful that I pretty much lost all respect for her. It's fine if she didn't want to change it, but I had a valid reason for asking. And her reaction made it clear that she thought less of women who did take their husband's name. And she knew very well that I had; my husband worked there as well and she knew him. It seemed very judgemental and unprofessional to react in such an OTT way.

I've gotten this attitude too. I'm not enough of a feminist because I changed my name.

Well, I didn't care that much. I have a brother who might pass on the name and many cousins who have the name. DH's family is very small. His dad's only sibling is (Catholic) clergy.  There is literally ... with the correct usage of literally ;) ... no one else to pass it on. So it meant a lot to him. (We've done some searching. There are actually only a handful of people with this surname in the U.S., and not many more elsewhere!)

It had nothing to do with feminism. I was my decision. Isn't that what feminism is all about? The rights of women to make their own decisions?  ::)
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: bopper on January 29, 2016, 01:59:39 PM
Also you could just say: "'Angharad Schweinsteiger'?   Can you imagine?  No I will be keeping Smith, also because I am known as Smith professionally."

Anything else you just "So kind of you to take an interest."


I changed my name, because I wanted all of our potential family to have the same last name.  Paper work is not that bad if you do it right aftr the wedding.    My name went from slightly unusual to slightly unusual.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Outdoor Girl on January 29, 2016, 02:06:49 PM
My response will be, 'I'm keeping my own name because I am incredibly lazy.  I really do not want to have to do all the paperwork required to change it.'   ;D

If BF feels strongly that I take his name?  Then he can do all the dang paperwork.  And he's even more paperwork adverse than I am so I really don't see that happening.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: katycoo on January 30, 2016, 02:18:34 AM
I'm 98% certain I would change my name to my husband's....I think it would make me feel like we were united, and would be an outward symbol that something had really changed about me.

An excellent reason for your husband to take your name!  :)

Ha ha! :) I do sometimes "worry" about what if the last name is really awful (IMO)--something that sounds ugly or like a rude word, or just is hard for my mom to say, or sounds funny with my first name. Lynn Lin? I think of Lauren Bush Lauren... Who thought with the first name of Lauren, she would manage to meet and marry someone whose last name was Lauren?

That's really pretty low on my list of worries, though. ;)

I had a friend in college whose last name was the same as my first, he suggested one evening (after a couple of long island ice teas) that if we got married I could be like Jeannie Jeannie on I dream of Jeannie.  We moved his drink away from him (lol)

There is a very sad story of a young girl (13/14) from Newcastle in Australia who was murdered back in the early 90s.  There was a film about it- Blackrock?
Either way, her name was Lee Lee.  I think her mother remarried and Lee took her new stepfather's surname.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: WolfWay on August 18, 2016, 06:27:08 AM
There's currently an ongoing situation in South Africa where hundreds of married women who opted (on the marriage registration forms) to keep their maiden names have been finding out that the Department of Home Affairs changed their names anyway (over their wishes). The women only found out last month when they went to vote in the municipal elections and found out that they were registered under the wrong names. Now the Dept is insisting that the women obviously didn't know how to fill out the form correctly so its their fault, silly little darlings that they obviously are (not actual wording, but heavily implied in tone).  There's a lawyer gathering a list of cases to start trying to take legal action.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Danika on August 18, 2016, 09:38:08 AM
There's currently an ongoing situation in South Africa where hundreds of married women who opted (on the marriage registration forms) to keep their maiden names have been finding out that the Department of Home Affairs changed their names anyway (over their wishes). The women only found out last month when they went to vote in the municipal elections and found out that they were registered under the wrong names. Now the Dept is insisting that the women obviously didn't know how to fill out the form correctly so its their fault, silly little darlings that they obviously are (not actual wording, but heavily implied in tone).  There's a lawyer gathering a list of cases to start trying to take legal action.

 :o

Wow!

Thanks for mentioning it. I'll look up that story and follow it as the lawsuit progresses!
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Twik on August 19, 2016, 04:24:13 PM
There's currently an ongoing situation in South Africa where hundreds of married women who opted (on the marriage registration forms) to keep their maiden names have been finding out that the Department of Home Affairs changed their names anyway (over their wishes). The women only found out last month when they went to vote in the municipal elections and found out that they were registered under the wrong names. Now the Dept is insisting that the women obviously didn't know how to fill out the form correctly so its their fault, silly little darlings that they obviously are (not actual wording, but heavily implied in tone).  There's a lawyer gathering a list of cases to start trying to take legal action.

 :o

Wow!

Thanks for mentioning it. I'll look up that story and follow it as the lawsuit progresses!

Sigh. In my home province, back in the 1970s, a legislator voted "no" on whether married women changing their names should be optional, with the reasoning, "Otherwise, how would we know who she belonged to?"
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Diane AKA Traska on August 19, 2016, 07:39:34 PM
There's currently an ongoing situation in South Africa where hundreds of married women who opted (on the marriage registration forms) to keep their maiden names have been finding out that the Department of Home Affairs changed their names anyway (over their wishes). The women only found out last month when they went to vote in the municipal elections and found out that they were registered under the wrong names. Now the Dept is insisting that the women obviously didn't know how to fill out the form correctly so its their fault, silly little darlings that they obviously are (not actual wording, but heavily implied in tone).  There's a lawyer gathering a list of cases to start trying to take legal action.

 :o

Wow!

Thanks for mentioning it. I'll look up that story and follow it as the lawsuit progresses!

Sigh. In my home province, back in the 1970s, a legislator voted "no" on whether married women changing their names should be optional, with the reasoning, "Otherwise, how would we know who she belonged to?"

 ???
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: jedikaiti on August 19, 2016, 09:44:08 PM
There's currently an ongoing situation in South Africa where hundreds of married women who opted (on the marriage registration forms) to keep their maiden names have been finding out that the Department of Home Affairs changed their names anyway (over their wishes). The women only found out last month when they went to vote in the municipal elections and found out that they were registered under the wrong names. Now the Dept is insisting that the women obviously didn't know how to fill out the form correctly so its their fault, silly little darlings that they obviously are (not actual wording, but heavily implied in tone).  There's a lawyer gathering a list of cases to start trying to take legal action.

 :o

Wow!

Thanks for mentioning it. I'll look up that story and follow it as the lawsuit progresses!

Sigh. In my home province, back in the 1970s, a legislator voted "no" on whether married women changing their names should be optional, with the reasoning, "Otherwise, how would we know who she belonged to?"

In that case, we need the men to be required to take their wife's last name.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Ryuugan80 on September 15, 2016, 06:25:59 PM
I'd honestly consider saying, "Do you know how long it takes me to write out just my FIRST name? Yeah... so no, I'm good."
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Lynda_34 on December 01, 2016, 01:24:51 PM
I've not read the whole thread but I will. 
My last name has six letters.  My ex has eleven.
I work as a nurse and was not going to sign charts with his name.  I kept my name.  At church I was known as Mrs. B as his name was also difficult to pronounce.
I've been divorced for a while.  We are civil at family events. Our children have his name.  He is their father.
My son has a daughter out of wedlock.  We weren't sure if he was the father and so she had her mother's name. I had a DNA test done and he is definitely the father.  However he is a single parent and she was in daycare while he worked.  When she started writing her name I told him to tell them to teach her his last name.  The daycare staff's reaction was that would be so difficult for her.  His reply was, "I did it, she can too."  My feeling was if she started with her mother's last name, 6 letters, she would be confused when we tried to switch it.  She if 5 and can write it and spell it correctly.
I also chose not to have children until we had been married for about 5 years.
You have to do what is best for you at the time.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: VorFemme on December 01, 2016, 10:01:33 PM
I wonder, are the folks where each family member has an individual surname tolerant of those who literally can't keep up? Or are they snippy about it?

I know for a fact that my defective memory would never be able to keep 4 different surnames in the same household straight, especially if it were something very "lysdexic" like swapping the order of a hyphenated name. I have trouble calling my own 2 kids by the correct first names.

Hi, Mom!  One time, I got called the names of six cats, the dog, and my brother before my mom actually called me my own name  8)

Thirty odd years ago, I had a neighbor with seven older brothers.  She got called by all seven names before her mother got to her name on the list...she was the *only* female child - so it bugged her just a little.  Until she realized that with 8 kids, her mother had spent at least six years pregnant...
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: WolfWay on March 23, 2017, 01:07:07 PM
There's currently an ongoing situation in South Africa where hundreds of married women who opted (on the marriage registration forms) to keep their maiden names have been finding out that the Department of Home Affairs changed their names anyway (over their wishes). The women only found out last month when they went to vote in the municipal elections and found out that they were registered under the wrong names. Now the Dept is insisting that the women obviously didn't know how to fill out the form correctly so its their fault, silly little darlings that they obviously are (not actual wording, but heavily implied in tone).  There's a lawyer gathering a list of cases to start trying to take legal action.

 :o

Wow!

Thanks for mentioning it. I'll look up that story and follow it as the lawsuit progresses!

update from friend who lodged case:

#Marriednames is a greater victory than I thought.

The Department of Home Affairs has agreed, not only to change back the names of affected women and help them to get new birth certificates for their children if needs be, but they have also undertaken to:

* train staff to address bias or preconceived notions;

* include a compulsory “chosen name” tab on its system;

* disallow the “default” option (woman takes husband’s surname); and

* If Part C (surname) part of marriage form is incomplete, officials have a duty to follow up with individuals.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: Luci on March 23, 2017, 01:11:27 PM
There's currently an ongoing situation in South Africa where hundreds of married women who opted (on the marriage registration forms) to keep their maiden names have been finding out that the Department of Home Affairs changed their names anyway (over their wishes). The women only found out last month when they went to vote in the municipal elections and found out that they were registered under the wrong names. Now the Dept is insisting that the women obviously didn't know how to fill out the form correctly so its their fault, silly little darlings that they obviously are (not actual wording, but heavily implied in tone).  There's a lawyer gathering a list of cases to start trying to take legal action.

 :o

Wow!

Thanks for mentioning it. I'll look up that story and follow it as the lawsuit progresses!

update from friend who lodged case:

#Marriednames is a greater victory than I thought.

The Department of Home Affairs has agreed, not only to change back the names of affected women and help them to get new birth certificates for their children if needs be, but they have also undertaken to:

* train staff to address bias or preconceived notions;

* include a compulsory “chosen name” tab on its system;

* disallow the “default” option (woman takes husband’s surname); and

* If Part C (surname) part of marriage form is incomplete, officials have a duty to follow up with individuals.

Great! Thanks for the update.
Title: Re: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?
Post by: LondonAngel on July 04, 2017, 03:18:57 PM
just thought i'd share this

my best friend kept her maiden name, for 8 years but changed it recently because her children had their fathers, on her request not his, at school all the school children called her "Mrs husbandlastname" and you can't correct a five year old! and to her it felt like the right thing to do. my sister double baralled her last name as did her children, but it's so long they all just use their dad at work