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June 01, 2006

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I had always figured I'd base the decision of whether to change my name or not on the last name I was inheriting (yeah, superficial and not very feminist, but there it is.) When I knew J and I would be getting married, I initiated a very long conversation once about names and what he would think if I kept my maiden name (I'd pretty much decided to take his, but was curious about his thoughts.) We decided that for the purposes of kids we'd share his last name, and I kept my maiden name as a middle name.

I knew my parents would never have expected me to NOT change my name (it was never really a question when they were married), so I thought my dad would be pleased when I told him I'd be keeping my maiden name in the mix as a middle name. And you know what? He laughed like he thought it was the silliest thing.

I still like my decision. I can hold on to my past and still share the common name with my husband and girls.

My husband changed his last name to mine. I am lucky I know. :) But he did it when we were a few years into the marriage. We have since changed the kids last name as well. Oh and I never changed my name in the first place - it never even crossed my mind!

:)

DUH. Plopped my comment on the wrong post.

Don’t beat yourself up. I think we all have moments of loathing motherhood. It’s tough. There are times when the sound of “Mommy” makes me cringe.

Last night my girls let me enjoy a glass of wine without interruptions; took a bath without fighting over who got the pink mermaid and who got the green; and put on their PJs without being reminded 10 times in a row.

Then it came time for the bedtime story.
“Mommy. I want Care Bears.”
“Mommy. Why does she always get to pick the story?”
“Mommy. Here, Care Bears”
“Mommy. I want the Princess and the Pauper.”
“Mommy. Nooooooooooooooo. Care Bears!”
“Mommy. Mommy. This one. She always picks!! NOT FAIR!”
“MOMMIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! NO! NO!”
“MOMMY!”
“MOMMY! MOMMIEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!”

At times like that, I HATE the word Mommy.

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I didn't change my name for all the usual feminist reasons. My husbands' family is still annoyed beyond belief, especially now that we have kids. It feels right to me though. It's who I am.

Mrs. Jeff'sName, I didn't know that he would have been willing to take your name! I love your maiden name. We were on the bus together, heading into the tunnel, when you told me your maiden name. That's how much of an impression it made. And of course, I own a book with your maiden name in the acknowledgements.

I liked my maiden name, but no one could spell it. And it was spelled exactly like it sounded. When I met my one-syllable-last-name-husband-to-be, I was thrilled. Perfect marriage material, including the name!!

Except that my maiden middle name didn't sound right with his last name. And I LOVED my maiden middle name. Sadly, it became a casualty.

i thought about changing mine, but it was too much of a pain in the ass. with international paperwork and all.
actually i had a lot of reasons not to change it.
First was the paperwork.
then i thought about my mom, she has the same first and last name as me. and i kinda wanted to keep it that way. plus she didnt change her lastname after she remaried so i wouldnt feel left out. so i didnt want her being the only one of us stuck with my fathers last name.
Plus my last name kicks ass. it means queen in russian. thers no way im changing that!
and the last argument was that my husband told me that he likes my name and that its a stupid tradition anyway.

What a great entry. I just got married in May and went through a great deal of stress over this. My family didn't think it was a big deal, but I'm a writer, too, so my clips also feature a maiden-name byline, and also, I loved my last name. It has two A's separated with an apostrophe, for cripe's sake. How cool is that?

But for the sake of unity, unity with my husband and for our future children, I decided to change it. I know I made the right decision, but I'm still having a really hard time perfecting my new signature, and I'm still really proud that both my bachelor's and master's degrees bear my maiden name. That name certainly earned it.

Fizzle ~ that's nothing. My MIL refused to marry my FIL unless he changed his very Polish name to the American "equivalent" - (a few of his family members had done it). Craziness.

Now this is terrible. But we're all friendly, anonymous types, right? I can tell you that I hate my husband's last name and it didn't quite match with mine so I didn't choose it, right?

Oh, I mean, for sure there was that attachment I had to my own last name and the fact that it reflects my heritage. Then there's a piece of not wanting to supplant my identity and become Fizzle Other Last Name. But when push came to shove, when the proverbial computer guy showed up at my desk, I mentally put my first name with the husband's last name and the die was forever cast.

I'd keep my name, thankyouverymuch. And I'm subtly working the lines so that our hyphenated last name for the ninos just shakes down to mine... ;-)

Mommy sacrifice...makes you do crazy things, like change your name! Great points brought up here, thanks!

That is very sweet that your husband was willing to change his name (even if he was just saying so - like mine would do just so I thought he was being sensitive).

Excellent post topic. I, too, took my husband's name for the sake of our future children. And while I don't like the idea of having to explain (and proove with documentation) over and over again that yes, she is my daughter and no, we don't have the same last name, I also really miss my maiden name.

I don't feel as though I've lost my identity. But I do feel like I have lost some of the connection to my own parents (whom I adore beyond belief), and created some "false" connection to HIS parents (whom I mostly cannot stand). Sometimes I feel a little like a traitor.

I too struggled with it but came to the same conclusion as nan

"Well, I'd been identified by my father's last name for over 20 years. Either way, I'd be identified by a man's last name." only I've been identified by my Step father's name

I shouldnt be surprised that so many of this wrote on this same topic and share the same feelings about it. I'm glad I share a name with my husband and son but when I see other parents names with seperate names on the day care mailslot I feel the slightest bit envious.

I never had a middle name, so oddly, after getting married I was excited to use my maiden name as my middle name and take my husband's last name. I almost always write or sign my entire name. Luckily, it's not too long. I like having that connection to both sides of the family.

I had a former employer who was an ultrafeminist. She essentially berated me and said that I was stupid to lose my identity by taking my husband's name. Well, I'd been identified by my father's last name for over 20 years. Either way, I'd be identified by a man's last name.

I don't think I've lost my identity; my personality and my character hasn't changed since marriage. The only thing that's changed is my house is twice as messy. Hopefully, people label me as the woman that volunteers for that organization or the woman that works hard at her job...and in the future, that woman who is a great mom. My identity as a whole is not so-and-so's wife.

Living in the South, I often get solo invitations or letters to Mrs. Husband's first, middle and last name...that does annoy me...

I had a similar experience. As a writer, I had amassed a mountain of clips in my maiden name. And, my husband's last name was long and hard to pronounce. I changed everything over but my social security card was the last to go. I just did it a few months ago in December. It took me almost five years to finally let go.

I had no qualms about changing my name back in (eh-hem) 1990 when I got married. Then-husband and I had been dating for 7 years and I was ready to be the Mrs. Then add divorce into the picture 13 years later. What to do? I wanted the same last name as my children, but an identity separate from my ex who had, let's say, moved on. So I added back in my maiden name and hypenated it. Becoming Kvetch Pre Hyphen Post. I needed an identity separate from him, and was hell-bent on having one. Since my ex died, the identity separate from his is kind of a moot point. The identity separate from his, just is. So now I am either Kvetch Post. Or Kvetch Pre. Or Kvetch Pre-Post. It doesn't matter, but can make me dizzy. If I ever get married again, I will not change my name. Too many hyphens.

This was such a great post on this topic. I can't wait to hear what people had to say.

I hypenated for awhile with my first marriage and then get tired of the two name thing (mine just didn't sound right). SO I changed it and then when I got divorced, I vowed I would NEVER do it again. What an ass pain.

Now I use my maiden name, except on base of course, because no one knows me. However, if someone calls me Mrs. My Husband's Full Name, it sends shivers up my spine.

Officially, I've never changed it - and while my husband jokes about it now and then - he and his family are probably secretly annoyed.

And secretly, I kind of like that.

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