Don’t Lose Who You Are – Name Change

Image source: Pinterest | Rustic Wedding Chic

Hello lovely readers – a bit of a personal post coming at you this evening.

I’ve been thinking about this for quite some time now…..The name change!

Even before my fiance and I were engaged we were engrossed in several conversations about how he would feel incredibly insulted if we got married and I chose not to take his surname. We were having a discussion recently following a mutual friends marriage last year and her resistance to take her husband’s surname, due to the fact that it didn’t ‘sound right’ to her. To date (now married) I still don’t think she has officially taken it. I think the groom was secretly hoping the euphoria of marriage might soften her and change her mind….nope.

Not long after my fiance and I got engaged, I started to play around with new signatures….(I know, what a geek!) It’s since been put in a corner, I haven’t mastered it yet, but come to think of it, why would I? It took me several years and several pieces of A3 paper to my master my current squiggle of a signature: The little signature I remember working on with great precision for several years as a child, with my little afro ponytails and coloured crayons (maybe they were pencils – my memories a bit fuzzy). Imagining I was signing an autograph for my adorning public each time. In any case, it wasn’t mastered overnight and the creation of my signature meant that I was a grown up, it meant that I was important and that I had a say – Then just like that, “I Do” signed, sealed, delivered and its obsolete…

It’s a big decision.

Image source: Pinterest

Funny – for me the word ‘Mrs’ seems to lend itself to the elders, someone with authority, the elderly next door neighbour that you always addressed by her title and surname out of respect. What happens when someone calls me Mrs…..for the first time and I don’t recognise my new title. Surely its a given, considering I have become so accustomed to my current name format for thirty years. Haha!

We also live in a society where it’s more than acceptable to live together and create a family together without being married, which has enhanced the use of double barrelled surnames retaining both identities.

A friend of mine and her husband have legally taken each others names. So her maiden name is now a second middle name for the both of them, followed by his surname. I had not heard of this being done before and thought this is a really lovely idea and interesting that the groom takes on part of the brides name so that they may carry that on through generations to come.

Sara of Under the Vintage Veil blog also addressed the same issue she has been contemplating whilst in preparation for her own wedding and I’ve had many a conversation with clients regarding similar concerns so it’s obviously something that is quite close to home for a lot of people and is a big decision for some.

Image source: Pinterest

Although I am sure it will come with adjustment, I am looking forward to taking my fiance’s surname, I keep saying it out loud to myself with apprehension and excitement (what a dork) and it just sounds, well, ‘different’.

One thing I am looking forward to is not having to spend several minutes on the phone to utility companies explaining why my fiance and I have different surnames and proving that I am not some kind of fraudster trying to access joint utility accounts. LOL! I’ll also be clinging onto my current (maiden) name for professional use – so feel I like I am not completely letting go of ‘me’, which feels important and right for me.

Isn’t it funny how much weight there is behind a name change – your family name and what that means to you. In reality, we will all still be who we are, feel the way we feel and have the same history and the same roots and same belonging.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this Nu Bride readers, so please do leave a comment on the blog below: (if you can’t find the comment box below, click on the grey speech bubble by the post title. ;o) )

Will you be taking your fiance’s surname? Will you be double barreling it? Do you feel like taking your partners surname wipe out all your history? Does it make you feel like you are losing a part of yourself and a part of your identity? Losing your family? What did / does taking your partners name mean to you?

In the words of William Shakespeare:

“What’s in a name? that which we call a rose by any other name would smell as sweet”

Image source: Pinterest

© Nu Bride 2012

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10 Responses to “Don’t Lose Who You Are – Name Change”

  1. Emma Pryor
    May 10, 2012 at 8:45 am #

    I personally cannot wait to change my name. I’ve spent the last 30 years correcting everyone when they spell it wrong or spelling it out several times before people get it right! Plus as it’s my dad’s name I don’t want it!!! Roll on August when my initials will be E.T!!!haha

    • Nu Bride
      May 10, 2012 at 8:02 pm #

      E.T!! Brilliant!! Of course! I hadn’t thought of that – I think the correction of spelling surnames is likely to happen regardless for most of us.
      Thanks for sharing your comment Emma. 🙂

  2. Natalie B
    May 11, 2012 at 11:19 am #

    I like my maiden name and of course it is weighted with memories and family history. A part of me wants to double barrel to retain that part of myself, but another part of me feels proud to be taking on the name of my fiancé and three children. We will at last all share the same surname and become a solidified unit (we are that unit already, but the change in my surname will be the icing on the cake) so I am trying to embrace it with open arms.

    • Nu Bride
      May 11, 2012 at 12:02 pm #

      Thank you Natalie. How lovely that you symbolise changing your name to the icing on the cake of solidifying your family unit.
      I really don’t think there is a wrong or right answer. Couples / families need to make their own rules and do what feels right for them. Thanks for sharing. ;o)

  3. Emma Woodhouse
    May 11, 2012 at 11:39 am #

    I had absolutely no hesitation in changing my name, partially because my maiden name sucked in terms of spelling and pronunciation and partly because I got a kick ass new literary name when I got married. For me, I don’t think changing your name changes anything apart from letters on formal documents. If you think you’re going to lose a little part of yourself, that’s probably more to do with your mindset, than your name.

    • Nu Bride
      May 11, 2012 at 11:57 am #

      I’m intrigued Emma – what was your maiden name?!
      Absolutely, it is down to mindset – especially if we hold our names at an identity level as so many of us do. So I can understand from both sides.

      • Emma Woodhouse
        May 11, 2012 at 11:59 am #

        I used to be a McLaughlin. Sort of sounds like Maglocklin, often misprounced as Miss Laughing, mis-spelt in a myriad of ways and no, not related to Sarah or Craig or Kyle Maclachlan!

      • Nu Bride
        May 11, 2012 at 12:06 pm #

        Haha! Now I understand and sympathise. I forsee having these phonological processing problems in the not too distant future!
        Thanks Emma. :o)

  4. Scarlet Gabriel
    May 14, 2012 at 10:11 pm #

    I dunno, I love my surname and its my professional name too, I think I’d have to double barrel it if anything but who knows, I may change my mind later…not actually planning to get married by the way, just enjoying the blog 🙂

    • Nu Bride
      May 14, 2012 at 10:21 pm #

      Thank you Scarlet, food for thought isn’t it! Thank you for following, Proof that you don’t need to be getting married to also enjoy the blog. 🙂