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  • November 21, 2017, 11:54:44 PM

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Author Topic: Would this be an acceptable reply to assumptions about taking a married name?  (Read 35828 times)

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sulygirl

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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.

Dindrane

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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.


Mel the Redcap

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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.)
"Set aphasia to stun!"

Lynn2000

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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.
~Lynn2000

Outdoor Girl

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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.
After cleaning out my Dad's house, I have this advice:  If you haven't used it in a year, throw it out!!!!.
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EllenS

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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.

greencat

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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)

Lynn2000

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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.
~Lynn2000

Ryuugan80

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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.
"Yo, those kids are straight up liars, man. All I told them to do was run product. And by product, I mean chewing gum."  - Lie to Me

daen

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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.

lowspark

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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.
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ladyknight1

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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.
ďAll that is gold does not glitter, Not all those who wander are lost; The old that is strong does not wither, Deep roots are not reached by the frost."
-J.R.R Tolkien

Ginger G

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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. 

Ponydoc

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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.

Lynn2000

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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..."
~Lynn2000