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September 30, 2005



I have all four of my names. I added my maiden name to the middle and my husband's to the end. I love all the names.


I had a very long hard to pronounce Irish last name and when I got married changed to a short German last name. I actually changed ALOT of things when I got married - got a house and moved, cut off 4 feet of hair, and last, got a new job. Nobody at work ever knew the 'old' me so it was 100% transition. I miss not matching my cousins but I like my new name.


I changed mine when our oldest was born so we would all 'match' and I wish I hadn't. I guess I feel so often lately that so much of me has been swallowed up by the role of wife and mother that changing my name is yet another part of me that is lost. Or maybe it's just bacuse my jackass FIL and his new wife like to joke about how sorry she is that marrying him meant she had to share a last name with me. What I'm annoyed about it that I changed it for free, but would have to get a lawyer and petition a judge to change it back, not to mention deal with all the church-lady gossip that would accompany such an act. So, in short, I changed it and I regret it. I am every bit the mother of my children no matter what my last name is and I wish that my surname still honored my father and not my jerky FIL.


I took my husband's last name, and I've never regretted it. It really bothers me, however, to be addressed as Mrs. Mark T____. Or even Mrs. T____. I much prefer Ms.


I kept my maiden name during my first marriage. Made it easier when that ended in divorce anyway! When I met my husband, though, I couldn't imagine anything more wonderful than taking his name. I was (and am) so totally in love that I just wanted to be a part of all things him. We also knew that we wanted children and having a family surname simplifies that. Plus, my maiden name was 14 letters long and unpronouncable, whereas I am now "Evans". And finally, my husband and I have the same first name (his is the masculine version -- one extra letter), so its kind of amusing and confusing at the same time!

As a side note though, I wish that I'd known about the keeping your surname as a middle name and being able to use either caveat. That would have been the best option (and I detest my middle name!).


I still haven't deciced. I have a daughter from a first marriage. BUT, I kept my maiden name and My daughter has my maiden name. My ex's last name was too horrible to give to any child on purpose...much less a girl. But, with my current husband,(that sounds so temporary doesn't it?) I still float between my maiden name and my married name. I still haven't changed my drivers license, or my checks. SO, I am still on the fence with this one.


I took my husband's name - seemed much easier that way with the prospect of kids and such. I'm happy with the choice. Makes me feel like I really committed myself to the relationship.

Two interesting options -

1. Both parties changed their name to HIS ancestral name - what it should have been before his ancestors came through Ellis Island and got the name americanized.

2. She kept her name & all three boys have her maiden name. Reason - so that her family name wouldn't die out with her father. No brothers & all sisters took husbands name.


I kept my own name. I never planned to do anything different, but it was made easier by the fact that I like my last name and think my husband's is kind of lame. I answer to Mrs. Husband's-name when people we don't know well call me that, but correct those with whom I will have more than a passing acquaintance. I am a feminist, but the big thing about not changing it was that his name wasn't mine. It just wasn't. I totally get you, Chris, because it is just weird to be called by this other name.

We went a step further, though, and two of our kids have my name and one has his. We strongly disliked the idea of hypens. They were all supposed to be mine (we decided if the first baby was girl they'd all have my name and if it was a boy they'd all have his, and I won), but I loved having a kid with my name so much that I didn't want to rob him of the fun, and let him have the second kid, who happened to be a boy. The third, a girl, reverted back to me.

The fact that I kept my own name doesn't freak people out much, but the kid thing sure does.

Grouchy Old Yorkie Lady

I turned my maiden name into my middle name and took my husband's name for daily use. I use my full name, including my middle/maiden name, for my signature, business cards, name tags at professional gatherings, etc. but introduce myself at social gatherings as Mrs. Husband's Name. Doing it this way is my way of honoring my stepdad, whose name I carried for years without really appreciating all that he did for me while I was growing up or the many, many sacrifices he made.


Because I have children from a previous marriage I kept my married name from that marriage and added the new name on the end. I pretty much just dropped my middle name altogether so that now I am Jolene C______ B______. No hyphen because I found out that without the hyphen you can legally use either last name when you sign something. It makes it MUCH easier when you have a brain freeze, sign something with only one of the names, and then realize you oopsied! ;)

My aunt's husband took her last name when they married. Now THAT guy gets my respect. LOL


I kept my last name, and informally use my husband's last name as a middle name. This is confusing to most of our family members who always reverse the order and put my husband's name last. It bothers me sometimes, but not enough to make an issue of it. I like my last name (even though it is harder to pronounce than my husband's). It's part of who I am and I was reluctant to give it up when we married. Our children have my husband's last name and I have no problem with that. For a short time, though, they get to have my last name... babies are identified in the hospital by the mother's last name after they are born. Our first child was delivered by c-section, so he had my name for 5 days. (Much to my husband's dismay!) Our next child is due next month and she, too, will have my last name for the duration of our hospital stay.


i kept my name. at one point before our marriage we played around with the letters of our last names to see if we could come up with something different but really, the idea of all that paperwork was a total turn off. i have absoltely no connection with my father, he had his father's last name who had his father's last name and so on...it really doesn't matter, it's not HIS name, my name is MY name.

people do ask all the time, "what's yer new name?" i laugh and say no new name, i'm still me but if ya want to call me mrs.s, go for it. whatever.

when kids come into the picture we will probably hyphenate their names to ease confusion...

Alice H

I took my husband's last name and replaced my middle name with my maiden name.

I was talking to one of my doctors about this a few weeks ago - she took her husband's name when she got married a couple of months ago. She said that most of her friends from med school who had kept their last names or hyphenated had eventually ended up just changing their names over anyway, so she went ahead and took her husband's last name when she got married. No one seems to know who Dr. W is, though, including some of her receptionists.

I hope I never get divorced, and I hope if I do, I don't hate my husband so much that I feel like I need to get rid of his last name. I think it helps the kids feel part of a family unit to all share the last name, although I am sure it's not nearly as important as actually acting like a family unit.


My maiden name went into my middle name. So essentially I have two middle names and my married name is my last. And to be honest, my maiden name feels more foreign to me now then my married name. I only have to drag out my maiden name on very legal forms where you have to say your name as it is spelled on your SS card. ;)

Robin P

My maiden name was a very easy Jewish last name which was rarely spelled incorrectly and never pronounced incorrectly by strangers.
Rich's last name is your typical Italian name which is only pronounced correctly by our family members.
I'm an old fashioned girl and when I got married at 31,I was pleased and honored to take his last name.

Everyone has their own opinion on this topic. I think people should do whatever works best for them.


I would agree wholeheartedly. I did the no hypen version... just two last names and people do waht they want with it. I use both, but I paid for my maiden name (did not want my father's last name anymore, he did not deserve me to carry it), so it was much more important to me. My husband did offer to change his, I said "pish, you don't have claim over it..." (I think he was slightly relieved) so perhaps I am not so highly evolved?


My husband's last name is hideous (not literally), mine I like, and I can't stand my in-laws, so I kept mine. I'm also very lazy and won't do any extra work, so not changing my name suits me.


Chris, you must send me your email, as I have a great cartoon to email you.

I did take my husband's name, but wish I had kept my maiden name as my middle name, I guess that is the correct tradition wrt that - but I didn't know...I wish I had to honor my father, why should just the guys get to hang on to that last name?


I've changed my last name TWICE in a dozen years, and the whole process has left me somewhat uncomfortable, though I'm not really sure what other options I had/have. When I got married the first time, I was excited to take my husband's name because I had been tormented all my life by my long, weird, German name. My husband's name was short and simple, and went really well with my first name. After we got divorced, I kept it, and intended to keep it forever, until five years later, when my new husband thought it was strange to keep the name of an ex-husband. I saw his point, and agreed to change it yet again, this time to a completely commmon, generic name. I still use my second last name on occasion, mainly for publishing purposes (I published a book under this name) but I often find myself missing my second last name and, I suppose, the identity I had while I had it. Recently, I renewed my driver's license, and on a whim, decided to add my middle name. I had dropped this name the first time I got married, since I didn't feel it had any special meaning, it didn't go particularly well with my new last name, and also because I occasionally used my birth name as a middle name. But now I feel like my original middle name is part of my identity/history, and so I should acknowledge it. That helped a little, but overall, I wish I could just drop the last name altogether, like Cher or Madonna!

Sara B

I took my husband's (very generic) and couldn't be happier. I grew up with an extremely long and unpronouncable Dutch last name. My signature takes less time as does any spelling confusion.

gina L

I like tradition. There are reasons for such formalities. To take your husband’s name, create a family, and a family name is all part of building a legacy. Because you take your husband's name it doesn't mean you loose anything of yourself. You are building something together. Understandably, there are various rationales for taking a professional name or adding hyphenated versions. It is easier for all to embrace the union and not have to give multiple names.


I kept my original name, he kept his, and the baby's name is hyphenated. This was always my idea but was such a big issue for my poor husband that we actually had to go see our therapist to get it all hashed out; while there we decided to come up with a family middle name (change each of ours & give it to all the kids) so there's still a "family identity" but it's just our secret, nobody's business. I don't regret it one bit and while I know my husband struggles with it occasionally still, he tries to believe me when I remind him that it's not about rejection of him, it's about the importance of all of us getting to shape our own identities.


I've legally hyphenated although I continue to work under my maiden name and I answer to Mrs. "Husband's Last Name" when the school calls. Like you, the hyphenation seems too cumbersome in many cases (I hate ordering goods over the phone when I have to spell out my last name.)

I think of them all as secret identities, to some extent -- none of them is the real me.


I changed my name and now that I'm divorced I'm stressed out with how much work it is to change it back. What a pain in the butt. Isabelle wont' have the same last name as mine..but she'll know that I'm proud of my last name....And she's still my girl....who cares if we don't share a last name...right? :)

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