Maiden or Married name?

@deejean06 (1953)
United States
March 18, 2009 9:07am CST
When I got married I chose to change my name to my husband's name. It did take awhile to get everything switched over, and I'm not really sure that everything is switched over even now, but I made that decision. However I know that more and more women are choosing to keep their maiden names after marriage. I'm just curious as to the reasons. Why do some women hyphenate their names? I have a family member who chose to hyphenate her name the first time she got married but did not the second time she got married. What was your reason either way? Tradition? Keeping your family name to remember your family? Blending families? I'd love to hear from you...
3 people like this
21 responses
@brazeel1 (22)
• United States
19 Mar 09
I took my husband name when we got married. But I did actually ask him if he would take my name because my senior year in high school my parents and only sibling was killed so therefore I was the only one left. And I myself, couldnt carry on the name. So I asked him too because he had a brother to carry on his name. But the more I thought about it I didnt do it. Wanted to be old and traditional so I just took my husbands name after all. Its a good thing too because I found out not long after my parents accident that the grandfather that I knew growing up was actually not my grandfather. My dad had a totally different dad that we never knew about. So its a good thing I didnt want to keep that family name going since it wasnt our family name to start with.
2 people like this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
Well hello brazeel1 and welcome to mylot! I'm so sorry for your loss. But it does show you're a kind and considerate person who wanted to honor your family name. Thanks for sharing your story and your difficult decision.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Mar 09
That you so much for the welcome. Its been 11 years since my loss so it is better now. Married and have two beautiful children. So life is GREAT!
2 people like this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
20 Mar 09
To you and your family I wish you only health and happiness...to you I wish you happy mylotting!
1 person likes this
@laura1167 (149)
• United States
19 Mar 09
When I got married, I took my husband's name because we were forming a family by being married and it seemed like the right thing to do, although I did consider keeping my name at first. When we got divorced I legally went back to using my maiden name.
2 people like this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
20 Mar 09
Thank you for the response although I'm sorry to hear of your divorce.
1 person likes this
@Ravenladyj (22992)
• United States
19 Mar 09
when I got married I kept my maiden name..Why? well because my kids are from another man and I wasnt changing their names..Funny thing is all three of my kids have different last names...My oldest has his fathers last name, my daughter has my last name (same father but we werent together when she was born) and my youngest had my husbands last name LOL..I can honestly say that if I were to ever get remarried I would still keep my last name...its just way easier...
2 people like this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
29 Jun 09
Hi Raven...Well you have a unique situation and I believe you did what was best for everyone - good for you! Thanks for the response!
• Philippines
19 Mar 09
I have transferred to a different city away from my old hometown before i got married and that was almost six and a half years ago. I opted to hyphenate my name because for forty years i was known by my maiden name and if an old friend, former co-workers or distant relatives see my name in some papers with a different surname they may not recognize that it's me. Besides, with the few thousands of Postal IDs i have issued that bear my complete name i got to meet people who know somebody from my old school, church or workplace and i actually met a relative in my new place just because i still keep my father's name. Well, everyone with a surname like my father's have at least an ancestor that came from our province. Come to think of it, maybe i'll try putting in my mother's maiden name too and see what happens next. Lol Hi deejean06!
1 person likes this
@Galena (9124)
20 Mar 09
as it happens, my surname is my mothers maiden name. as she raised me and my father didn't, I decided that I would use her surname, and not his.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
20 Mar 09
Oh, yes i can relate to that. I have two sisters who are both unwed mothers and they raised their children without the fathers who disappeared like bubbles! Me and my husband play a big role in the kids' lives as we don't have a child of our own. And well, they both use their mothers' maiden name. Hello there!
1 person likes this
• Philippines
20 Mar 09
I just remembered...i have a lawyer friend who has 2 first names and also includes her mother's maiden name, her father's and husband's last names in all her documents. Just imagine that! She had already narrated to me the long story attached to that, so there... Hi Galena!
1 person likes this
@sacmom (14338)
• United States
19 Mar 09
I decided to take my husband's name when we got married. I guess I'm kind of old fashioned and feel a woman should take the man's name. I don't really see the point in hyphenating my name. Plus it wouldn't look good together anyway! LOL
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
29 Jun 09
Hi sacmom...You're too funny! Do you think that people really decide whether to hyphenate on how it looks? I think that they just do it because they want to, not because it looks a certain way. I think that your reason is the number one reason why women choose to change their name - tradition. Thanks for the response!
1 person likes this
@sacmom (14338)
• United States
7 Jul 09
I don't know if other people decide whether or not to hyphenate based on how it looks, but when it comes to mine it just looks so wrong together. LOL But even if it looked great I couldn't see hyphenating it anyway. Like I said, I'm old fashioned. LOL
• United States
19 Mar 09
Dee- I went with my husband's last name because I wanted his last name. I was marry him and wanted to be one with him, and that was one way I did this. Perhaps I am a traditionalist, but I don't feel I'm loosing anything of my person by taking his last name. I also wanted our children to have his last name as they are his children too. Namaste-Anora
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
Hello Anora - Yes I agree with you. But the more comments I receive the more I realize we are the minority these days. I wanted the more traditional family that we all have the same last name. Thanks for the response.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Mar 09
Dee- Well, welcome to the minority lol. Namaste-Anora
1 person likes this
@suspenseful (40326)
• Canada
18 Mar 09
When I got married I took my husband's name, but when my son married his fiance, she hyphenated her name because that was the custom in her family and she was already a business woman at the time. It also made it easier I suppose so someone will not get her confused with another G - who married another man with the same last name as ours. And my single last name is not my real last name because my father changed ours before he and my mother got married. So now that is confusing.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
You're right - I'm confused already! But it's nice that your family follows their custom. Thanks for sharing!
1 person likes this
@suspenseful (40326)
• Canada
19 Mar 09
I understood my father changed his name because he was German/Austrian and it was during World War II, that he fought for the Allies but there was a lot of prejudiced against Germans even German-Canadians. (The family moved to Canada when he was a child.) I do wish he could have kept his last name, because he had to make up a different place where he was born. So it says he was born in Canada whereas he was born someplace else.
1 person likes this
@makingpots (11928)
• United States
18 Mar 09
I took my husband's name when we got married. We were young, right out of college, starting a new life and I wanted his name to be the name of the family we would be building. We have a very common last name so I briefly considered hyphenating my name just to set me apart from so many people out there with our name. I finally decided that having a hypenated name would be more annoying to deal with than running into others with my same name. I was wrong!! Should have hypenated. I can understand some women, who marry later in life and have an established professional career in their own name, wanting to keep their own name when they married. My best friend did that. She decided she would take his name if they ever had children. They finally did three years ago and she now goes by his name but keeps her professional stuff in her maiden name. It works for her.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
18 Mar 09
Hi makingpots! I have heard of keeping your married name due to professional reasons - after all you made a name for yourself before you were together - that is a valid point. Unfortunately that wasn't the case for me... I'm just a regular worker bee. Thanks for sharing with me!
@makingpots (11928)
• United States
22 Jul 09
Thank you for the best response, dee.
• Canada
30 Mar 09
I changed my name, but I did it when I was still single. I didn't relish the idea of being handed from my father to my husband, didn't agree with the transfer of authority, and didn't think it fair to keep my father's name when I would not take my husband's because in the "transfer of authority" the husband was just an extension of the father....and that really creeped me out!!! No one has authority over me. I don't believe in it. I'm a peaceful anarchist. That is to say, I go by common sense, and don't bother the people who don't bother me. I took my mother's birth name, because I wanted to re-claim my Danish heritage. I kept Dad's name as a middle name, and go by my mother's maiden name. When I married my husband, I kept this name, and he agreed with the idea. At first he wanted to take my name, but I asked him to keep his own. I thanked him for the idea, but mentioned that if he were to take my name, as long as we had the same last name, people would still think that I took HIS name, and they'd still address us as Mr. and Mrs. John Smith, even if Smith was my name.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
30 Mar 09
Hi danish... That's an interesting story - thank you for sharing. It's very nice that you wanted to reclaim your heritage and your husband respected your decision. It sounds like you two are a good match and I wish you all the best. Thanks for your response.
@bubbletush (1334)
• Philippines
19 Mar 09
I adopted my husband's name when I got married. Some people do not change their name probably because of the inconvenience of updating records of bank accounts, credit cards, Tax Identification, Social Security and even changing the signature. I went through all of that but it's okay. The inconvenience of the paper works is nothing compared to how I would make my husband feel. I know it means a lot to him that even though I cherish my dad, I opted to use my husband's name.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
29 Jun 09
Hi bubble...You're so right! There is so much paperwork to go through and even though my husband said that he didn't mind if I changed my name or not, I don't believe him. I think he would have been very upset if I didn't change my name so I did! Thanks for the response!
• United States
19 Mar 09
I choose my husband's last name because I wanted to express to world that am happy to be married to my husband. However , when I did change my name everyone in my dad's family made a big fuse over it though, because they thought I was going to keep my fathers last name because he based away, and my father side of the family the my fathers last name is a big deal. But in my case I changed my last name because, I wanted to and not for tradition
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
29 Jun 09
Hi misslovely...I think it's great that you chose to change your name not for any other reason than you love your husband and you wanted to do it for him! Thanks for the response!
• India
19 Mar 09
I have taken my husband’s name. I am brought up the traditional way and it was absolutely natural for me to take my husband’s family name after marriage. Also ours was a love marriage and it was both a pleasure and a privilege for me to identify myself with him and his family.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
23 Mar 09
Hi sudipta! How wonderful that you love your husband and wanted to change your name upon marriage! Thanks for your response.
@lingli_78 (12852)
• Australia
19 Mar 09
i still keep my maiden name until now even after i am already married for more than 3 years now... the reason is simple... i love my family name better than my hubby's surname and since he is not forcing me to change it as well, then i won't... i don't have any problem at the moment... so i will keep it as it is until there is a need to change... take care and have a nice day...
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
23 Mar 09
Hi lingli! That's an interesting reason to keep your maiden name! That's great for you that you don't have any problems with having two names. Thanks for the response.
@zhontine (127)
• China
19 Mar 09
why don't man change their names?Sx discrimination appear in my mind
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
I actually don't know why men don't change their names when they get married. Maybe that's a good question for another discussion... Thanks for the response.
@lynnemg (4540)
• United States
19 Mar 09
I took my husband's name. Not only is tradition but I also feel that it shows him respect.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
That's interesting... I never even thought that it would be respectful. Thanks for sharing!
@ponganne (19)
• Australia
19 Mar 09
I got married last year and I choose to hyphenate my maiden name to my husband's last name. I did this because of the nature of my work. I usually interact with clients and work colleagues from overseas through email, having a new last name might lead to a bit of confusion. Also, I wanted to keep a part of my former identity but still manage to merge it with my new life as a wife. The only hassle is that my last name does not roll off the tongue quite easily and can be a mouthful. But otherwise, I'm happy with having a hyphenated last name.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
Many professional women have the same problem - people won't know who they are if their name is changed. As long as you like it that' all that matters! Thanks for the response.
@Yori88 (1468)
• Philippines
18 Mar 09
I got married last year and until now I still don't have the ID's I need as a proof of my new last name. As a tradition and as part of the law here in Philippines, I have my husband's last name after we got married. Problem is when I do transactions like en-cash a check I still use my maiden name because I still have the two ID's when I was maiden. The IDs I requested from two government agencies are were not yet given to me. I don't know when will I receive them but as long as I don't have them I will be using my maiden name even if I am married.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
Congratulations! I did that too until I switched everything over to my married name... I still think there are one or two things which haven't been changed yet. I don't think I realized how many things are actually held in my name! Thanks for the response.
@Galena (9124)
18 Mar 09
I'll be hyphenating. for a start, I have a more interesting surname. and my name is already qyute long, so one more syllable won't make a difference. in an ideal world, both would hyphenate, I think. to me, that way best shows the true nature of marriage. two joining together, rather than one becoming part of the other, unequally. also, in my family, this generation are all girls, so I am reluctant to make any move to eliminate my unusual surname which has strong links to the place of my ancestors.
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
19 Mar 09
That's a good reason and a nice reason to honor your family name by keeping it in marriage. Thanks for sharing!
@NIECIE21 (365)
• United States
18 Mar 09
When I get married, I am taking his last name personally. I am getting ready to graduate in a few months, and am getting married next year, so professionally, I am going to hypanate my last name for a few months so people will know that it is still me. My reasoning on taking his last name is tradion. And he has a daughter who will be my step daughter, so it will be like I am joining their family
1 person likes this
@deejean06 (1953)
• United States
18 Mar 09
Well congratulations on your graduation and your marriage! This is an exciting time for you and I hope it's happy too! Tradition is an excellent reason and the exact same reason I changed my name. Thanks for the response.
@mhayfie (242)
• Philippines
19 Mar 09
honestly i didnt yet get married..but the time i will i would continue using my maiden name...for me the reason that i will get married is that we love each other and not surrendering any right of using my fathers last name...it just giving respect to the family that created me as me...simple logic man now are not higher than women...we are equal..thus, if the law will dictates that we will used the husband last name then the law should tell the husband to use the wifes maiden name...God bless.
1 person likes this