To Be Increasingly Irritated by PIL Insisting I have Name-changed on Marriage

(195 Posts)
LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 11:13:59

When I have not? Small problem, I know. But they have completely ignored my not changing my surname on marriage. I have told them repeatedly I am still known by my original surname, but they refer to me as "MrsTheirSurname", send me letters addressed to MrsTheirSurname and have forwarded invitations sent to their address for DH and me, scoring out my surname and replacing it with theirs.

On challenging them, they told me "If you join this family, you take our name. Its not up for discussion". Except I haven't, and I'm not going to.

5madthings Wed 17-Apr-13 11:16:09

Yanbu this would really fuck me off!

I would return stuff that is wrongly addressed, but that may be petty!

ChasedByBees Wed 17-Apr-13 11:16:18

They're being rude and ridiculous. <whispers> if y

ChasedByBees Wed 17-Apr-13 11:17:07

Argh, pressed send <you could give any DC your surname too...>

picnicbasketcase Wed 17-Apr-13 11:18:21

Well, they sound fucking ignorant tbh. You could cross out their name on the envelopes they redirect to, write 'no-one by this name at this address' and send it back but I suppose that's even more childish than they're being. All you can do is keep pointing out that actually, it's NOT your name, you have no intention of ever being called that name, and they that should respect your decision. Or do it back: for instance if they're called Frank and Betty, start calling them Jeff and Felicity. They'd get the message in the end.

aldiwhore Wed 17-Apr-13 11:18:21

Sounds like a mountain out of a molehill. How often does this problem arise?

Both DH and I changed our names on marriage, me because I didn't want to lose mine and didn't like his (it would have given me the same name as my first teacher, whom I despised) and him because he liked mine and it would make him stand out more professionally...

His parents were very pleasant, but very old school and just couldn't get used to it at all. I didn't make an issue out of it, and neither did they, for years I'd receive the xmas cards with MrsDHinitial & surname, roll my eyes and carry on.

It sounds very formal if they're referring to you by surname anyway.

I guess I pick my battles, and for me, it wasn't one that I felt was worth falling out over.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 17-Apr-13 11:18:32

Would drive me crazy with rage.

Its rude and not their choice.

PeoniesPlease Wed 17-Apr-13 11:19:18

YANBU! Mine do this too - they had a shit fit when they found out that I wasn't taking their name, and now address all post to Mr and Mrs PeoniesH.

I have brought it up a couple of times, but they have ignored it. I'm just trying to not let it bother me these days (although it still does.)

Very passive-aggressive. Urgh. You have my sympathies OP.

HumphreyCobbler Wed 17-Apr-13 11:21:55

It is one thing just using your DH's name when writing to you, but to actually scrub out your name and replace it is very aggressive. To argue with you in person about it is also really rude.

This would really wind me up, and I did take my husbands name when I married.

EggsEggSplat Wed 17-Apr-13 11:22:09

That sounds like they are making a real point of it. Can you get your DH to have a word with them?

I had a similar but less extreme problem with my PiLs, but they just resorted to basically avoiding using my surname wherever possible, eg would post things just under DH's name, or would add '& myfirstname' without the surname. It is only since DH has died (after we'd been married 15 years) that they have finally been forced to address letters to me with my full name.

NomDeOrdinateur Wed 17-Apr-13 11:22:32

They're perfectly entitled to call you whatever they like - as long as they're prepared to accept that you will extend the same courtesy to them... wink Have some fun with it.

Peevish Wed 17-Apr-13 11:23:21

Sympathies, OP - mine weren't so obtuse, they just thought it was 'what everyone did', but I had to be very firm about the fact that if you are addressing me formally on an envelope I am either Peevish McPeevish, or Dr Peevish McPeevish, not Mrs DHName. Also about the fact that our baby has both our surnames, which they also have difficulty with.

I don't think they mean to be unkind, they just don't get that, while I'm fond of them and their family, I did not marry into a clan in some 19thc way that means I become one of them, like the Borg or something.

Point out you haven't in fact joined their family, it's not the bloody Guides or the Ramblers' Association. Your DH has equally 'joined' your family, and no one is expectin him to reinvent what he is called.

StephaniePowers Wed 17-Apr-13 11:23:44

Well, now you know your place in their affections, you can work on being as distant as possible from now on smile
Seriously, it takes many people decades to work out that their in-laws don't respect them. They've done you a favour.
As for this particular problem, I'd ignore it for now (you do obviously have a right to call yourself by whatever name you choose!) - let them think they have their way and just ignore them as far as you possibly can.
They sound extremely horrible by the way.

Chunderella Wed 17-Apr-13 11:24:25

How lavishly obnoxious. The refusal to respect your name change is annoying- I have an elderly great aunt who does that because she thinks its funny, so I let it go. But the comment is on a different level to what might be called the 'normal' stubbornness over names, and for that reason I can't agree with aldiwhore. I'd fight fire with fire and start calling PIL by MILs birth name.

BlingLoving Wed 17-Apr-13 11:26:53

YANBU. This is unbelievable. I'm just amazed that you've had 12 responses and only one has told you you're making a mountain out of a molehill. Because for reasons I don't understand, a lot of people seem to think that if a woman is consistently called by the wrong name, it's not such a big deal and she should just suck it up.

DH needs to talk to them, firmly but politely. It's irritating enough that they can't get it right generally but for them to specifically and pointedly change things that are in your correct name is taking it to a whole new level of aggression.

I'm going to face the same problem and I'm not even married yet. MIL to be almost started a row with me in a shop about this a few weeks ago, the lady in the shop was sticking up for me.

LadyClariceCannockMonty Wed 17-Apr-13 11:29:48

'"If you join this family, you take our name. Its not up for discussion".' shock

I think the response is 'You're right, it's not up for discussion. This is my name and there is no question of my changing it. If you can't deal with that, send invitations and cards to 'DP and partner' or just 'DP' if it pains you so much to write my name.'

I am childish though, so I would also follow the suggestions above to cross out their names on the envelopes they redirect to and write 'no-one by this name at this address' and send it back. grin

taxi4ballet Wed 17-Apr-13 11:30:11

Have you explained to them exactly why you decided not to change your surname to theirs?

What does your DH think about it?

HumphreyCobbler Wed 17-Apr-13 11:30:31

I love the phrase 'lavishly obnoxious'! How true in this situation.

StephaniePowers Wed 17-Apr-13 11:31:43

It AMAZES me that people don't realise that the name you choose for yourself is non-negotiable.

The more I think about it the more it seems they are itching for a fight with you OP. What does your DH think of them and can you collectively just tell them to sling their hooks for good?

SirBoobAlot Wed 17-Apr-13 11:31:54

How rude of them. If they're not listening to you, your DH needs to have a word, and tell them this is unacceptable.

What unbelievable wankers. I think I'd be spending as little time with such disrespectful, misogynistic dickheads as possible if I were you.

BlingLoving Wed 17-Apr-13 11:33:17

I think the thing that makes it sooo annoying, is that thes people really do think that this is the way it is done and therefore there is no other way. It's like by choosing not to you're doing something deeply illegal and/or immoral.

I'm actually quite wound up by this. More so even than I get when people tell me that I shouldn't care what people call me and that they're going to continue calling me Mrs DHName because it's easier for them. WTF?!

olgaga Wed 17-Apr-13 11:33:44

It must be very irritating for you but it sounds like you're not going to get anywhere with this at all!

If they have no "better nature" to appeal to, you can't exactly force them to do as you ask.

HolofernesesHead Wed 17-Apr-13 11:33:53

Play them this song at every opportunity: That's not my name

EldritchCleavage Wed 17-Apr-13 11:34:38

Well, if it is a mountain out of a molehill it is they who are making it so, not you.

I agree that your DH should now raise it, because they have gone out of their way to be rude and silly about it. once he has though, I think you should ignore them if they keep doing it. But also, file away their overbearing lack of consideration for future reference. Sadly, with these sorts of attitudes it may not be the only thing about which they are difficult. Forewarned is forearmed.

Squitten Wed 17-Apr-13 11:35:50

See, usually I would say just let it go, pick your battles, etc, until...

"If you join this family, you take our name. Its not up for discussion."

THAT would royally piss me off. Has your DH not had words to tell them that their attitude is unacceptable?

TimeIsACurrency Wed 17-Apr-13 11:36:35

shock Unfortunately it's not unbelievable to me as DH has a set of relatives who refuse to use our DC first name. They don't like it so write his middle name and underline it several times in all cards/letters etc.
The called him the wrong name to his face also which was obviously confusing to a small child. We tried talking to them about it but they ignored us. They don't see us or DC anymore due to a host of other nastiness, but they still send cards to him with their preferred name.
They go straight in the bin.

I hope you and DH tell them straight, that actually they're right, there is no debate. You pick your name, not them.

DewDr0p Wed 17-Apr-13 11:37:50

My PILs do this too - I choose to laugh at their pettiness because frankly to argue with them over it would (a) make no difference and (b) be a waste of my valuable time.

People I love and respect use my correct name so in all honesty, if PILs want to play these silly little passive-aggressive games then they can knock themselves out. grin

pippitysqueakity Wed 17-Apr-13 11:38:34

This should be such a non-problem. What is wrong with some people? Surely we should have moved on from this, why get married if you won't take my name stuff by now? (I realise it is PILs not DH btw).


Does it happen often tho? I cannot think of any letters my PIL have written me in 10 years, not counting birthday/xmas/etc cards.

What I mean is, does it impact on how anyone else addresses you or is it just their little PA way of making some sort of stupid point?

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 11:39:46

I've explained to them my reasons for not changing my surname on marriage (not that I need reasons):

- its my choice
- both of my parents are dead, I'm an only child and the last person in my family with my name
- its a nice name, and I'm well known by it in my profession
- I find changing your surname on marriage sexist and outdated
- I have some Scandinavian blood and have a whole host of female relatives who didn't change their name on marriage, in fact one of the husbands changed his name to his wife's.

FuckOffMrBloom Wed 17-Apr-13 11:40:42

Is it possible they are confused? My ILs (and DH) thought it was actually illegal not to change your name. I use both my name and my DH's surname depending on circumstance, and they were horrified when they saw my driving licence, they honestly thought I woudl go to prison for it.

HolofernesesHead Wed 17-Apr-13 11:44:29

You don't need to persuade them, Abs. It's your choice and they should respect that, regardless of your reasoning. I'd be hmm at their idea that in marying your DH, you are 'joining their family.' I'd want to sort that one out one way or another before it causes other problems, tbh. What does your DH think?

GobShizz Wed 17-Apr-13 11:45:44

"If you join this family, you take our name. Its not up for discussion."

Actually, you don't - you form a NEW family, when you choose to marry someone. I haven't changed my name, and MrShizz refused to change his, which I think is fair enough.

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 11:45:58

I'm sitting looking at an envelope, addressed to me and DH, forwarded from them, to my own house, upon which my surname is crossed out and replaced by theirs. It has happened a few times, because DH and I were moving house, and some of their relatives would send invitations, thank you letters to PIL's house. Its also happened with every formal invitation they've sent us, not many to be sure, but the point is still made. And in conversation, they will correct me and refer to me as "You are MrsOurSurname" now, not "MsYourSurname" (emphasis on the Ms). When I correct them, they talk over me. I would have to create a big scene and stomp out to make my point.

I just hate it. Hate it. I don't see why I should get DH to speak to them about it. I am going to take them to task on it again and again, each and every time they use it.

Despite this, we get on reasonably well. But for sure, I find them old fashioned and sexist in their views - they seem to think DH and I are doing well because of his job, and make reference to the nice house we have bought, when in actual fact I earn more than him and paid the vast majority of the deposit!

quoteunquote Wed 17-Apr-13 11:46:18

What an arse, and very rude, don't give in.

send back letters , as not known at this address.

Wibblypiglikesbananas Wed 17-Apr-13 11:49:01

My mum (!) still refers to me as Mrs DH, despite me never having changed my name on marriage. Whenever I bring it up, she just says, 'Well, you really should change it.' Erm, no I shouldn't! DD also has both surnames.
Interestingly, my somewhat more enlightened inlaws are fine with this set up.
I really do not understand people who believe they can tell you what you should be called! Your name is of your choosing, simple! In your case, I'd be getting your DH to have a word. Your inlaws are being incredibly rude.

StephaniePowers Wed 17-Apr-13 11:52:38

OP they have zero respect for you. That isn't 'getting on reasonably well'.
You are going to take them to task and there is going to be another thing and another thing and then another.

What options do you have for limiting contact? Is it a big family who have lots of get-togethers? Does your DH ordinarily have trouble with them (hmm lots of men ignore red flags from parents though).

NinaHeart Wed 17-Apr-13 11:53:47

Utterly rude and ignorant of them.

(One of my BILs does the same to me and another asked what was the point of getting married of I wasn't going to chamge my name?)

I think your H should intervene and tell them in no uncertain terms that he thinks it is rude. I expect they quite like winding you up, but may think about it a bit more coming from him.

badbride Wed 17-Apr-13 11:56:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Jan49 Wed 17-Apr-13 11:57:07

Argh! This would really annoy me. No advice but lots of sympathy in having to deal with these people. I think it's very offensive that people think they can tell someone else what their name is.

My (now former) ILs couldn't cope with the fact that I'd kept my own surname so Christmas cards were addressed to "Mr J Smith and Jan" and birthday cards were addressed to "Jan" with no surname. My MIL said it was because she couldn't remember how to spell my surname, though it's not a hard one. Once we split up, she continued to send cards but immediately started addressing them accurately to "Ms J Jones".hmm

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 11:57:32

LOL StephaniePowers I don't see them that much, simply because we have little in common, although we live so close together. My idea of fun isn't sitting indoors all day on a Sunday, not even going out for a walk. DH is with me on that one. For some reason, they seem to have the attitude that they are some wealthy leading local family, whereas I don't see them that way at all.

I actually had a friend of DH's, on Facebook of all places, whom I barely knew, having a real go at me for not changing my surname, and accusing me of it being because I didn't like the surname in question! Quite bizarre. DH told him he was stupid.

It is kind of clannish...

They are rude and ignorant, and this is the best way they let you know that they have absolutely no respect for you.

The MrsTheirSurname they are talking about is another woman, the woman your dh might have married, not you. MrsTheirSurname does not actually exist, so when they are writting Mr and Mrs Theirsurname, they are referring to their son and NOBODY.

I would just distance myself, and be Nobody to them.

Alwayscheerful Wed 17-Apr-13 12:04:10

Ladyclarice - I am loving your post, if I had your name I would take your attitude.

OP - I rather think your in laws are just ignorant and any point you try to make would be wasted, save your energy and your breath.

Loulybelle Wed 17-Apr-13 12:07:34

Oh lord, do they find it offensive because you havent immediately taking their surname.

I'd start sending shit back, with no such person at this address and circle the name.

Does it even bother you DH, that you didnt take his name?

BlingLoving Wed 17-Apr-13 12:07:44

"And in conversation, they will correct me and refer to me as "You are MrsOurSurname" now, not "MsYourSurname" (emphasis on the Ms). When I correct them, they talk over me. I would have to create a big scene and stomp out to make my point."

This is the best that just astonishes me. MY parents (never IL) have been known to ask plaintively why I haven't taken DH' name and to have suggested that really I should. But they've never told me to my face that in fact my name is not Bling Loving.

I think you may have to get rude. "No, that is not my name. Stop calling me that" said loudly and very firmly and shout over them if they try to do it to you.

elfycat Wed 17-Apr-13 12:07:45

I get this after 9 years of marriage. I ignore, ignore, ignore. Except cheques written to the wrong name. MIL blusters. I say 'well thanks for the thought anyway but I can't bank this. Never mind'.

(Backatcha with the PA!)

Mind you my FIL did tell me at our wedding reception that I wasn't welcome in their family unless I bucked up my ideas. I haven't changed my ideas at all, so I take his offer as stated.

Thank goodness the apple (DH) fell far from that tree.

Kundry Wed 17-Apr-13 12:10:03

You are not getting on reasonably well because you are seething.

My MIL will cheerfully talk at length about her darling boy, how stressful things are for him, how he has a good job etc etc while just turning to me to point out what essential DIL task I've forgotten now.

When actually I earn double his salary, have bought a house twice the size any of her kids have, have much more responsibility at work and work longer hours. And had none of the financial support from my parents (who didn't have a bean but are amazing and my inspiration) that they have been able to give their children.

Initially I smiled nicely but then I realised I could have 20 years of this. I pull her up on it every single time now - she isn't happy but I am! It isn't you who are making a mountain out of a molehill - SHE IS.

badbride Wed 17-Apr-13 12:12:00

"And in conversation, they will correct me and refer to me as "You are MrsOurSurname" now, not "MsYourSurname" (emphasis on the Ms). When I correct them, they talk over me.."

In this situation, I would be sorely tempted to turn up wearing a T-shirt with "MsMyName" printed on it. That way, they can talk over you all they want--you can just sit there wearing your correct name, and smirk.

Haberdashery Wed 17-Apr-13 12:12:43

God, they sound absolutely horrible. So rude. I agree that you should start sending things back with 'not known at this address' on them. Or get DH to tell them that he's changing his name to yours.

olgaga Wed 17-Apr-13 12:21:32

I would just bin any letters/communications from them that aren't addressed to you properly. Don't start sending things back, IME it confuses the PO and you might suddenly find you stop getting any post at all. (Happened to me once - at the end of my tether with junkmail.)

When you are asked if you have received x/y/z you can say "Oh I only look at stuff addressed to me in my name".

How often do they actually write to you though?

slug Wed 17-Apr-13 12:33:35

I'd be tempted to start signing letters/cards to them with Ms and Mr Yoursurname

GreenEggsAndNichts Wed 17-Apr-13 12:45:37

It's not about having your DH fight your battles for you. They're his parents, it's his surname (you married him, not them), and if he is supportive of you keeping your name then he needs to take them aside and ask that they stop harassing you over it.

If my parents were harassing my husband over something, I would do this. They're my parents. I have the closer relationship with them.

FWIW I didn't take DH's name, and I can't imagine having to deal with this from my ILs. They do sometimes address the odd card to the DHsurname family, but I understand it's for space reasons (postcard or so). There's a difference between that and actually being lectured like a child about marrying into their family. angry

perplexedpirate Wed 17-Apr-13 12:55:51

Very, very annoying!
But I think you should have some lols with it. Send them any letters addressed like that back to them, spell their name wrong on correspondence, pronounce their names wrongly at every opportunity, or just make up new ones.
If they say anything, just say (big smile, head tilt) 'names are so tricky aren't they'.

EggsEggSplat Wed 17-Apr-13 13:01:01

Make yourself a name badge and wear it every time you see them? Maybe make one for everybody - "just because you seem to find it hard to get names right, perhaps its your age..."

Tenacity Wed 17-Apr-13 13:01:50

They don't really respect you though OP, do they? Why do you think it's a reasonable relationship if this is how they treat you? They also sound very aggressive, and this could be a sign of things to come. They are telling you to be a good girl, and do as you are told. In any relationship this would be a deal breaker.
IMO you should start as you mean to go by. Let them know you will not put up with this. They need to know that this will ultimately affect your relationship. In a way, this could be a blessing in disguise as you have a chance to lay the boundaries out early on in your marriage.

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 13:10:38

They're very unworldly - they come from quite an isolated part of the country, where they have lived all their lives. For instance, they will make negative comments about "black people", not I think because they are actively racist, but because to them, seeing a black person on the streets was something very rare until recently. They think everyone is like them, or if not, should be!

OxfordBags Wed 17-Apr-13 13:22:54

I think you do need to get your DH to have a word with them, for sceral reasons: he is their son, they will listen to him more. IMHO, if a parent or set of parents need dealing with over something awkward/shitty, the adult child of that parent tackles them, not the partner, but above all, because they might believe - or be kidding themselves - that DH actually agrees with them but doesn't want to say anything to you because he is under the thimb or besotted or whatever.

Some people do think that women change their names legally when they get married, as an earlier poster said. In fact, any woman who changes her name to her husband's is just adopting a false name, which is fine under UK law. Unless she changes it to his by deed poll, her real name will always actually be her maiden name.

I think they need putting straight about your surname, and about your job, etc. they clearly think very plain speaking is the order of the day towards you, so let them get a taste of their own medicine. After all, you're in the right here!

I'm presuming that you don't have kids yet, but you need to put your feet down, you and DH now, before they start taking thepiss on a whole new level when the DC come along.

You need to be confortable with making things awkward. If they tell you that that's not your real name when they are visiting tou, insist that they leave, as you will not be disrespected in your own home. If they mention this wrong name, ignore them, then tell them that's not your name when they ask why you're not responding. Just get up and walk away when they start this crap. Start calling them names that aren't theirs and tell them you're just doing what they do to you.

If it matters this much to you - and it would do me (my PILs spelling my name wrong and insisting that it should be spelt that way (not a name with variables, either!) drives me to the brink, so I feel for you!) - then PLAY HARDBALL!

bran Wed 17-Apr-13 13:25:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Kundry Wed 17-Apr-13 13:33:55

Are you my SIL? My PIL spent Xmas telling us all how a distant cousin had married a black lady and do you know, their children have the fuzzy hair!!!???

They were clearly disappointed that none of us gave any reaction at all to the long lost cousins, fuzzy hair or not. They'd also be mortified to hear they come across as racist and that outside their tiny circle of friends, no-one thinks like them. Appearance and show is very important to them (their house is doily central) but they are oblivious to the fact that rules have changed in the last 50 years.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Wed 17-Apr-13 13:58:16

"If you join this family, you take our name. Its not up for discussion".

Goodness. What an interesting attitude.

Is the name Corleone by any chance?!

badbride Wed 17-Apr-13 14:14:34

Is the name Corleone by any chance?

My money's on Lannister grin

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 14:17:05

LOL @ Boulevard and badbride. I'm now tempted to get myself a name card saying Corleone, and pin it to my lapel, for the next time I see them...

YoniRaver Wed 17-Apr-13 14:19:14

Return the envelpoe, after all its not addressed to you is it ?

exoticfruits Wed 17-Apr-13 14:24:40

I would give no reaction at all-it will be far the most annoying to them. If they are then driven to mention it just say in, in a bored tone, that you are......... and change the subject. If they carry on just tell them it is not up for discussion and change the subject. Don't give them a way in-you don't have to.

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 14:26:33

That's pretty much what I do exoticfruits. It still persists...

I've been quite polite up until now...

skippedtheripeoldmango Wed 17-Apr-13 14:26:52

I've not read all the thread...but, if they feel that you have joined their family, couldn't the opposite be true of your DH? Hasn't he also joined your family thus he should have changed his name - by their logic anyway. They're a couple of silly, small-minded, passive-aggressive fools. Scratching your name out on RSVPs is the epitome of rudeness. It's none of their bloody business what you call yourself and they should respect their wishes.

If, however, they continue to call you what they consider is appropriate, perhaps you should do the same in kind?

Something along the lines of...Mr and Mrs Insufferably-Obnoxious?

They sound bonkers frankly. I don't have any constructive suggestions but do like the idea of calling them Mike & Jean or something.

I had a problem with my future FIL once. I said ,"For fuck's sake Peter just fuck off out of my house." I haven't had any other problems since.

Gusthetheatrecat Wed 17-Apr-13 14:41:33

'lavishly obnoxious'.
::happy sigh::
This is my new favourite phrase!

(Your PILs are hugely unreasonable, and seem very rude to boot, but you didn't need me to point that one out...)

MadonnaKebab Wed 17-Apr-13 14:52:49

Never had any trouble with my inlaws but my own mother refused to use my surname (same as hers of course) once I married, and told everyone in the family I'd changed my name when she knew I hadn't
After I told her a few times "thanks for the cheque for DCs but we can't cash it because no-one of that name exists/ has a bank account"
She then sent cheques in DHs name instead
She felt she'd won and it gave her a warm glow of victory until the day she died
Smile & nod, smile & nod, no point wasting energy on this type of shit

HerrenaHandbasket Wed 17-Apr-13 14:54:42

I was thinking they sounded like the Dursleys!

I second badbride's suggestion of a t-shirt with your name on it op. Or maybe one saying 'That's not my name' on it.... or (if you decide to go nuclear) have a big party and put up a banner or piece of wall art or something saying 'It's MissAbs, ACTUALLY.' They will see it and choke. Everyone else will see it and snigger wink

Floggingmolly Wed 17-Apr-13 14:56:08

How many letters can they possibly be sending you that it's such an issue? confused. Admit it, it was just the once, wasn't it?

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 14:59:04

It wasn't just one Floggingmolly. Its been 3 pieces of forwarded mail, 1 formal invitation to MIL's landmark birthday with details of what we were doing when and where, another formal invitation to their wedding anniversary celebration, and quite a lot of birthday and Christmas cards, some from them, some from other family members who weren't sure of our new address, all with my own surname replaced with theirs, sometimes crossed out, sometimes added.

fedupofnamechanging Wed 17-Apr-13 15:04:10

I would refuse all contact with them until they learn some manners.

I would also give my children my name too, if I was in your position (only child and the last one to have the name).

I think your dh does have to intervene, because this will not get better - they clearly have no respect for you and should you have children they are likely to seriously piss you off with their attitude. Best to nip it in the bud now by having dh tell them to stop this and by not seeing them until they are prepared to behave properly.

MerylStrop Wed 17-Apr-13 15:04:44

This is one battle I would definitely pick to fight

If they are scratching out your name on Christmas cards they are deliberately insulting you.

I would be LIVID


fedupofnamechanging Wed 17-Apr-13 15:06:03

You have a legitimate excuse to avoid all these occasions, since they haven't actually invited you, but some woman who doesn't exist

StephaniePowers Wed 17-Apr-13 15:12:53

For starters you need to get on top of sending out new address cards to all the family grin Or rather your dh should, if it's his family, but since you're narked at the name thing maybe you could steal a march on him.

GibberTheMonkey Wed 17-Apr-13 15:15:46

As your dh is onside could you get him to tell them that you've (you and he) decided they are right and that as a family you should share one surname so he's going to change his name to your surname

JassyRadlett Wed 17-Apr-13 15:17:51

Oh god, you should do what I threatened to do if my husband's immediate family didn't fix the Mrs and Mrs HisLast thing they tried.

Basically, you send every. piece. of. post. you ever send to them addressed to Mrs and Mrs MIL'sMaidenName. When they complain, tell them 'This is the way we do things in my family. It's not up for discussion.' And then just ignore/talk over their protestations.

How are they with logic? I have a few older relatives who'll start in on some long convoluted argument who are actually stopped dead in their tracks by the statement 'I'm sorry, I just don't see the logic in it.' I don't know why it works, but it does.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Apr-13 16:30:33

I would send out your Christmas cards early and have a note with name and address and email those you can. I doubt whether anyone else would be rude enough to change your name. I would ignore PIL completely,sound bored if mentioned.

slug Wed 17-Apr-13 16:31:30

Of course your DH joined your family when he married you. You could always sweetly tell them that, after much thought, you agree with them that a family should have the same surname. Therefore DH is changing his name to yours.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Apr-13 16:35:41

It really isn't worth it- there is a lot of power in ignoring.

EuroShaggleton Wed 17-Apr-13 16:42:38

They seem to have missed the fact that your husband has joined your family as much as you have joined his...

I feel your pain OP. My own nan does this. She seems to hate everyone and everything though, so I have a five minute fume when my Xmas card arrives each year and that is it. She refused to come to my wedding (for reasons that are still not clear 3 years on) and has never met my husband, so why she is so keen on his name I have no idea.

Everyone else has been put straight and seems to have got it.

exoticfruits Wed 17-Apr-13 16:52:35

If you ignore them they are the ones eventually out on a limb and just look silly. I would think long term .

Dahlialover Wed 17-Apr-13 16:55:14

I would ignore it and file them on the "nuts" shelf for future reference.

Does not bode well for grandchildren sad

they sound dreadful.

what knobheads.

you have to keep on at them, or threaten to divorce your DH.

(i meant threaten to them that you'll divorce DH, not threaten to DH!)

HollyBerryBush Wed 17-Apr-13 17:08:57

If you look at an etiquette book, the correct addressing of a joint invitation to a married couple would be Mr & Mrs DH Initial, H Surname. That would be irrespective of whether you use his name or your own.

Holly - if you look at an uptodate ettiquette book, the correct form for if the woman hasn't changed her surname is "mr dhsname surname & Ms/Miss(whiechever is preferred) opsname opsurname.

Hollyberry, etiquette books are only relevant to people who think their contents are interesting or important. As OP clearly doesn't, what an etiquette book might or might not advise about how she should be addressed is irrelevant.

Etiquette wasn't born out of nowhere in any case, there is a reason that tradition dictates 'mr and mrs man's initial man's name' and it is a premise that I reject.

JulesJules Wed 17-Apr-13 17:28:16

But why WHY on earth would you look at an "Etiquette Book" Holly?

And so what if it does opine on "correct form"? The correct way to address someone is by THEIR NAME. That they have chosen.

YANBU, OP. They are being obnoxious, aggressive, bloody rude and ignorant.

etiquette was born out of how to be polite, and DeBrett's now states that if you don't know, the most polite thing is to ask

OrbisNonSufficit Wed 17-Apr-13 17:30:20

What an extremely odd way of behaving. This is 2013, isn't it?

I'm trying to find a way of giving them the benefit of the doubt and failing... I didn't change my name when I got married and thus far the only pitched battles I've needed to have are over Ms/Mrs (since Mrs NonSufficit is clearly my mother), no one has challenged my actual name.

I do agree with exoticfruits, the best approach is to just keep ignoring it and try and solve the mail-sent-to-ILs problem at source. Anything passive aggressive (or aggressive aggressive) will just lead to escalation.

That said, my inner stroppy child would be yelling at them next time they corrected me about MY name something like "It's my fucking name you complete and utter imbeciles, what kind of fucking problem do you have with showing me the most basic level of respect by using my CORRECT NAME???". But obviously other than short term satisfaction possibly not helpful. Sadly.

Floggingmolly Wed 17-Apr-13 17:44:57

Etiquette books are only relevant to people who think their contents are interesting or important
What a bizarre viewpoint, Eric hmm Evidentally it's interesting and important to the PIL's, who, like it or not are actually correct.

LittleBearPad Wed 17-Apr-13 17:51:47

They are being incredibly rude but I'd get DH to deal with them. Their his parents he gets to tell them to jog on. Also nipping such PITA behaviour pre-kids is probably a good plan too.

echt Wed 17-Apr-13 17:54:04

Good manners trumps etiquette every time.

Floggingmolly Wed 17-Apr-13 18:00:11

Good manners is the very basis of etiquette...

echt Wed 17-Apr-13 18:02:38

So you think the PILS are right to behave as they do because of a book?

FrauMoose Wed 17-Apr-13 18:08:54

I changed my name - not via marriage - by a statutory declaration and my parents refused to accept the change My father is dead now, but my mother still addresses me as FrauleinHamster and not as FrauMoose. This did very little for my relationship with either parent.

Floggingmolly Wed 17-Apr-13 18:09:30

No, they are being obnoxious, but I was taking issue with your dismissal of established etiquette as of no consequence; which is blatantly ridiculous.

EggsEggSplat Wed 17-Apr-13 18:12:11

Floggingmolly - in what way are the in-laws 'correct'? There is no legal obligation to change your name on marriage in the UK, it is merely traditional. The OP has chosen not to change her name, and her in-laws should respect that.

Old-fashioned etiquette guides may say that married couples should be addressed as 'Mr & Mrs DH's Name', but I saw for myself this month that an invitation from Buckingham Palace to a married couple where the wife has kept her own name was addressed as Mr Hisfirstname Hislastname and Ms Herfirstname Herlastname. Now, if the royal family (or rather the etiquette-setters at Buck Pal) think it's OK, why on earth should anyone else try to impose their own outdated ideas on the OP?

tigerlilygrr Wed 17-Apr-13 18:13:17

OP I think they're terrified of you and your modern ways and this is their way of trying to assert control. I feel a bit sorry for them, they don't sound well adapted to today's world!

Dear Mum & Dad,

We won't be coming to your birthday and anniversary parties because you have inexplicably invited some woman called Mrs Dh-surname instead of my wife. If this was a senile mistake on your part, please send us invitations that include my wife. She is the most important member of my family you know.

love LessMisAbs-dh

PS Actually I'm considering taking LessMisAb's surname, but I'll let you know in due course

BlingLoving Wed 17-Apr-13 18:21:19

Um Flogging, I think you will find that modern ettiquette guides make the point that it is polite to address a woman in the way she has stated her preference ie this

if you don't know what she prefers, then yes, please go right ahead and use the old traditional form. But if she has told you, repeatedly, how she prefers to be addressed, then please use that.

Ooh Eggs how posh. I agree this must be evidence of correct modern etiquette.

Alternatively, start calling them Brian and Doreen. If they comment on it, look puzzled and comment blandly on the weather.

JeanBodel Wed 17-Apr-13 18:23:15

I had this with my PILs.

'Yes, we know you're choosing to be called Ms Maidenname, but legally of course your name is Mrs Marriedname.'

They are lovely people, they just live a very rural insular life. I don't think they've got it now to be honest. In their case it's ignorance rather than pig-headedness.

I pick my battles and haven't picked this one as I generally get on very well with them.

In the OP's position - it looks like the first of many battles to come, with such appalling people as PILs. sad

Chunderella Wed 17-Apr-13 19:06:47

If you're going to get on your high horse about following established modes of etiquette, you should at least check what they are. It is of course, the height of rudeness as well as being factually and legally incorrect to address someone by a name they do not use. But for those who, bizarrely, consider that traditional etiquette is more important, it seems rather contradictory of you to presume you know better than Debrett's and the royal family.

Gus, use it three times and its yours.

Gossipmonster Wed 17-Apr-13 19:23:28

My parents did this to me - yrs after I divorced and went back to my maiden name (their surname!) they insisted on addressing things to me in my married name hmm.

redexpat Wed 17-Apr-13 19:38:53

I like Bertha's answer!

I would do several things.
1. Return mail with not known at this address (as lots of others have said)
2. Send out xmas cards early with your names on (as others have said)
3. Get DH to talk to them.
4. If none of the above stop it then I would withdraw contact. It is the most basic form of respect. If they don't respect you enough to get your name right then you are in trouble.

TiggyD Wed 17-Apr-13 19:59:29

They pick a new name for you, you pick a new name for them. From now on address them as Mr and Ms Fuck-Face.

SconeRhymesWithGone Wed 17-Apr-13 20:42:54

I have an etiquette book that prescribes "Mr. and Mrs. DH Surname" as the proper form. It also has a chapter entitled " How to Host a Dinner Party with Only a Maid-of-all-Work."


SugarPasteGreyhound Wed 17-Apr-13 21:04:44

Do the sympathetic head tilt:

Dh and I are worried about you, they say one of the signs to watch for is forgetfulness, people's names, that kind of thing...

Bproud Wed 17-Apr-13 21:20:43

Now this has got me thinking...
After 27 years of marriage I still don't feel that I AM myfirstname DHsurname. I am thinking of going back to MY real name, my maiden name. Would I have to change by deed poll now or can I just return to my real name? (we are not going to divorce by the way).

OxfordBags Wed 17-Apr-13 21:26:05

BProud, your maiden name is still your 'real' name. Using your husband's name upon marriage is not a legal thing, it's just a tradition of adopting a false name. Like actors having a stage name, but their real name is always whatever they were called at birth. It'd be pointless to change it by deedpoll when it is still your name. Going back to using your maiden name would be much like what happened when you changed to your husband's surname: you need to inform all official channels, colleagues, family, friends, etc., of the name change.

Bproud Wed 17-Apr-13 21:39:20

Thanks Oxford, I will start with friends I think and then change official stuff as it turns up - will have to wait another 10 years for passport as I only just renewed!

oxford and bproud

yoyr real bame is the name yoy habitually use. the law in the uk is tgat whatever name you use is your legalname as long as you are not ysing it in an attempt to defraud.all you need is a paper trail (ie proof that you use the name)

sorry can't type! real name

Doubtitsomehow Wed 17-Apr-13 21:43:46

Op are your pils ime? Same bloody thing, right down to the rural isolation and mistaken impression that they are some socially leading local family (not to mention the racism, sexism...I could go on).

Nt wort it for me to fight it. miL is such a warped personality that it would just backfire (she'd be ' so hurt' that I had not taken their name...)

So have tried to rise above it. And often failed. Am guilty of petty revenge on occasion e.g. Deliberately starting a conversation about how immigration really benefits this country / producing a meal which required chopsticks instead of Roast Sunday Lunch / and so on. Childish I know. Just can't help it sometimes.

<<do not recommend this approach as they put you down as even more of a nutter than previously>>

and taking yoyr husband's name is a social custom and is most definitely definitely your legal name. it's not a stage name, any more than keeping your maiden name is.

Taking a husband's name is just a courtesy title.

DP and I have never married, but if we ever do (after 26 years, I doubt it grin) I won't be changin my name.

Even my 69 yr old mum has told me that if she were to go back in time she wouldn't have changed her name.

OP, I think your PILs are astonishingly rude. Yes, you may be able to stand up for yourself, but I feel that if your DH is backing you up in front of them it will carry more weight as they may be telling themselves he doesn't actually agree with you.

floggingmolly please look at my link to debrett's.

OxfordBags Wed 17-Apr-13 21:51:47

Unique, it becomes a legal name because it is perfectly legal to assume a false name in the UK. It is not legal as in your name changes by law to the new name and the old one is then defunct. The only way to do that would be to have every woman who wanted to change her name upon marriage change their name by deed poll, which would be too much of a palaver and expensive too. And as you know, no-one has to legally change their name upon marriage. Therefore, it as legal and fine to revert back to your maiden name and let them became your legal given name.

I wasn't saying that a married name is a stage name, I was likening the use of it to actors using their stage names.

EldritchCleavage Wed 17-Apr-13 21:55:14

It just isn't correct to override someone's expressed preference/choice because of what used to happen and appears in etiquette books. I find that quite an odd suggestion.

OP could have taken her husband's name, but she didn't. So whether one is addressing her individually or as part of a couple with her husband, she isn't to be called Mrs OPDH.

squoosh Wed 17-Apr-13 21:57:05

Wow, this isn't just a case of them being a bit stuffy and traditional they sound positively aggressive. As for their comment "If you join this family, you take our name. Its not up for discussion", well I doubt
Debretts would regard such things as 'correct'.

If it was me I just wouldn't bite my tongue to keep the peace. I physically couldn't. I would be icy, icy, icy calm and explain to them in no uncertain terms that they were behaviour was rude, obnoxious and bordering on the bizarre.

I'd make them rue the day they decided to dictate to me ther terms of my own identity. Shut this craziness down!

you're wrong.
your legal name is and has always been the name you habitually use. there is no such thing as a false name (the stage names you refer to are not the users legal bame because they choose them not to be)
yoyr maiden name does become defunct in as much as no one is using that name so it does not legally exist.
of course you can revert to using it if you choose (revert merely meaning to change to sonething you have used before)
there is no need for deed poll as all it is is an item of paper to help with the paper trail.
to revert to your maiden name, legally all you have to do is start using it.
it's easy to start the paper trail on that because you have legal documents in that bame (eg birth certificate). that starts it and then you just inform everyone else.

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 22:01:17

jeanbodel that's pretty much it!

Its obviously a specific type Doubtitsomehow!

If I raise the matter in person with them, it goes something like this: Me: "My name is <myname>. Them: "but in our house you are MrsOurName. Me: "No, that's not my name, its myname. Them: "belittling laugh then change of subject.

Or the ridiculous when I'm visiting. I answer the phone and say to MIL "theres someone asking for you". She will then say "Theres two of us, perhaps they're asking for you". Highly confusing and unnecessary.

Very against confrontation, but very into passive aggression. Its not a pleasant atmosphere when it goes like this. I don't see them that often so am just polite when I do, but I am going to insist next time.

Should be fun, they won't like it!

Btw I thought Debretts was all about making other people feel comfortable by using manners appropriate to the situation. And calling someone by the name they choose to be known as is certainly correct etiquette, "Mr and Mrs HisName" is simply the default position in the absence of other instruction surely.

you?re totally right littlemissabs.

when they do the patronising laugh and change the subject change it back again.
and show them a copy of the latest debrett's with tgat page open.

squoosh Wed 17-Apr-13 22:07:14

Bring some good old confrontation to the table, blow their pathetic passive aggression out of the water.

No offence but they sound like colossal tosspots.

CheerfulYank Wed 17-Apr-13 22:08:33

Ugh! Beyond rude.

Katisha Wed 17-Apr-13 22:10:49

I've had bloody banks insisting that when you get married it's compulsory to use your husbands name. I was incredulous that the person on the end of the phone thought this but it happened with two separate banks! Needless to say they didn't get my custom.

LessMissAbs Wed 17-Apr-13 22:14:03

In 2012 Katisha? Seriously, that's sex discrimination, they should get their house in order.

Katisha Wed 17-Apr-13 22:18:31

Yes it was a couple of years ago. Ultimately the problem was to do with me wanting to use two different surnames. I still use maiden name at work and keep some documentation in that name, but since having DCs it seemed easier to change to married name for some stuff. However I do rather wish I'd just stuck with one or the other as the bloody computers can't seem to cope with it.

OxfordBags Wed 17-Apr-13 22:20:13

Unique, erm, what you describe about just going back to the old name and creating a paper trail is exactly what I described before you. So why you are telling me I'm wrong, I do not know. The stuff about false names is what my BIL always says on the matter, and he is a divorce lawyer, so I've always presumed he knows what he's talking about. If he's wrong about the legal/false thing, fine. But nitpicking over my exact meaning of the word legal is pointless, as I gave the correct advice to BProud when she asked how to go about using her maiden name.

Katisha, those banks should be named and shamed! Not only is it incredibly sexist, it's just not legally true and never has been, and they shouldn't be allowed to do that!

EldritchCleavage Wed 17-Apr-13 22:32:51

PIL sound quite nasty, actually. The more I hear, the less I think it is about the name itself. It sounds like a control issue. If they gave up this one, they would pick another stick to beat you with.

I wonder if you and DH should talk to them together about showing you more respect. If left, there will come a time (especially if you two have children) when the impulse to bully and knock you causes real problems and can't be smoothed over.

Kundry Wed 17-Apr-13 22:37:40

I've had a problem with banks being incapable of seeing that I have 2 surnames as I use both. Once I'd changed my name at Santander they refused to bank any cheques with my maiden name despite them clearly having the records to say it was me!

Result is I have another account with Halifax (having made sure I didn't tell them I was married) in my maiden name purely for paying in the odd cheque and I transfer it back to Santander.

Worst bit is I didn't really want to change my name, I haven't changed it in my workplace, DH couldn't give a toss one way or the other but as we don't live together I did it so I felt more like Mrs DH when he wasn't here. And I couldn't decide what to do about Mrs or Ms if I was using my maiden name - even the registrar gave up and said she'd announce us as the bride and groom after hearing us debate about it.

I wish I hadn't bothered now as it's been so much hassle but I can see it is even more challenging to the older generation who may not even have considered they had a choice - we got given cheques as wedding presents to Mr and Mrs DH, which we had to politely ask for again as we didn't have a joint account - so they were sent to me as Mrs DH when I hadn't changed names yet - so more polite asking and general bafflement amongst family members as to what sort of weird marriage we had.

When I rule the world all women over 18 will be entitled Mrs and that will be an end of it angry

LemonBreeland Wed 17-Apr-13 22:39:24

MIL is being rather PA with the telephone stuff. She is forcing her opinion on you. I see no reason not to ge PA gack.

prettybird Wed 17-Apr-13 23:29:09

What about that old MN favourite, "Did/do you mean to be so rude?" with a sympathetic smile?! wink

Oxford/Unique I'm not 100% sure what the situation is post marriage (i.e. reverting back having used married name) but - my brother had one name on his birth certificate but had been known by a different surname for his entire life pretty much. So his passport, bank accounts etc etc were all in that second surname.

He eventually (in his 30s) decided to revert to his original name. In his case, he had to either change it by deed poll (which he didn't do) or make a sworn declaration which he did have to have witnessed/stamped formally. I think it was done at the local Justice of the Peace. He did need a "new" piece of paper to restart the trail effectively.

OxfordBags Thu 18-Apr-13 00:03:50

Stats, I think that might be to do with him having used it since childhood, and so it was the sole legal name he'd ever had as an adult, IYSWIM. That would completely different from an adult reverting to a surname they'd held as an adult previously. There would no legal paper trail existing for his original name, so no proof, as it were, that he'd ever been known as it (which he hadn't).

I know of several women who have reverted back to their maiden names and have been told that deed poll is irrelevant, as the maiden name is still their original legal name, or words to that effect.

DadDadDad Thu 18-Apr-13 00:08:57

"If you join this family, you take our name...".

Sounds like a very traditional view, oh except second chapter of the Bible said a few thousand years ago:

That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.

So as others have said, they make a new family, not join an existing one.

IneedAsockamnesty Thu 18-Apr-13 01:27:22

In the uk legally anybody can call themselves anything they want as long as they have no intention to defraud.

If I woke up tomorrow and decided I wanted to call myself Burt bogface I am perfectly entitled to do so legally all I have to do is inform people that that is how I wish to be addressed.

The problems arise when in the absence of paperwork confirming this, you want people that rely on paper trails to comply with that wish, but that does not change that it is perfectly legal to do so without paperwork.We have deed polls to assist with this its purely a document that proves your naming wishes and has to be accepted by banks ect.

LittleFeileFooFoo Thu 18-Apr-13 02:01:50

* She will then say "Theres two of us, perhaps they're asking for you"*

OP, perhaps you should ask if she has a clone.

Also, would you pretty please for me, OP, give your children your name? Or at least the girls, in the true Scandinavian way? I think LeMissAbsdottr is very catchy!

OrbisNonSufficit Thu 18-Apr-13 09:13:35

Sock (snortle) or should I say burt bogface? Good point.
OP, as it is apparently sufficient to place an ad in a national newspaper declaring your new name, perhaps you could do that with your current name? Then send the ad to the ILs? Tell them it's legally binding...

That is actually a perfect answer to your inlaws overbearing "if you join our family you take our name".

"Well, actually I have not joined your family, me and your son have created a new family unit, and we are known by MrYoursurname and MrsMYsurname, and this has little to do with Your Surname"

sashh Thu 18-Apr-13 09:31:40

A friend of mine had this. She just binned anything and everything that was addressed as Mrs HName.

Birthday cards, bills, invitations. Eventually people got the point.

LittleBearPad Thu 18-Apr-13 09:42:57

Your MIL sounds like an utter cow. Sod the passive aggression, tell them off otherwise this will never end. It's highly unlikely that companies likely to address you over the phone formally i.e. Ms X, are going to track you down to your PILs house. She's just being horrible.

HazleNutt Thu 18-Apr-13 09:49:20

was about to write what Quint said. You did not join PILs family, you created your own. And your family is called Mr Hisname and Ms Yourname. If they insist that someone has to join the other's family, it can as well be DH joining yours, so he can start calling himself Mr Yourname. I wonder how they'd like that.

Also, companies will use the name they've been given, not the name your PIL are trying to force on you.

Jengnr Thu 18-Apr-13 10:20:53

When she does the 'there are two of us' thing say 'Oh how lovely, when did you change your name to Ms Yourname?' And take the call. Make sure you put the caller straight on her new name too. And address all invitations to that new name.

Lay it on how nice it'll be for her to share a name with your kids too smile

Two can play at that game sunshine!

HazleNutt Thu 18-Apr-13 10:40:15

Or start calling PILs Günther and Brunhilda. When they look confused and say that's not their name, reply that Mrs Theirname is not yours either, but as they use this name for you, you assumed they would like to be called something else as well.

2rebecca Thu 18-Apr-13 10:43:28

I'd find this petty and controlling, it's a totally unnecessary fight. I kept my surname and if my inlaws went on about me being really mrs Husband's name I'd clarify that I am no more that than he is Mr my surname. If they insisted I would tell them I found their behaviour controlling and refusing to call someone by their name showed a lack of respect and liking for that person and if they persisted then I would want to have as little to do with them as possible.
I would ensure my husband was on side as well and get him to tell his parents that they are wrong and rude, and no good can come from this unnecessary battle.

YoniOneWayOfLife Thu 18-Apr-13 10:47:44

"Since you've decided my name is YourName, we've decided the best way to keep MyName alive is to give it to all our DC. Thank you for making the decision so easy for us"

quietlysuggests Thu 18-Apr-13 11:09:22

I think you should remind yourself that they are doing you a favour.
People telling you to return your own post to them?
Others saying cut all contact?
Jesus woman get a grip.
How many pieces of post have my PIL forwarded to me in the past year - none.
Because I dont ask them to and if I did I would have to accept that they can then address it as they want so long as it gets to me.
So dont be a child.
You are moving house and are currently relying on your ILs to forward post to you.
Suck it up.

Then outside of this, I honestly would get DH to tell them one last time that your name is your name and that everytime he hears them calling you by his name that he thinks they are fools.

And then I would just bite my tongue.

squoosh Thu 18-Apr-13 12:11:55

Why should she bite her tongue when they don't bite theirs? Nothing more dull than a martyr.

5madthings Thu 18-Apr-13 12:18:14

My crossing her name off the posr and writing another name they are defacing her property. Interfering with post in this way is a crime.

Yanbu op they are being incredibly rude.

Not quite the same but when the madthings were littke and sent post she insisted on just addressing them to first name dps surname when actually they have a double barreled surname shoukd be first name mysurname-dps surname. She doesnt like them.having my surname as well... I pulled her up on it but she didnt stop until the children got old enough that they commented on it themselves!

HazleNutt Thu 18-Apr-13 12:50:05

I could understand if she would be forwarding the mail and just writing Family Theirname on the new envelope. But as OP says, they actually cross her name out and replace with theirs where there's absolutely no need to do that. That's just incredibly rude.

Statisically - you're right - you do have to have a sworn declaration, even if you've used that name as an adult.
That's basically all deed poll is - a piece of paper confirming that you are now using another name.
When I mentioned the birth certificate, I meant it wasa useful starting place for showing that you were changing your name - you cannot use the birth certificate alone as proof that you are that person, but it kind of says "look, this is the name I want, and I've been known by it before"
You need the papertrail, which in most cases is a sworn letter or document saying that you are now using the name.

That's regardless of whether you've used that name as a child or adult, or never used it before this time.

ah Sock said it so much better than me smile

JustinBsMum Thu 18-Apr-13 12:58:34

Do they mean to be so rude??

You should outlive them so will win in the end grin grin
So just ignore it.

quietlysuggests Thu 18-Apr-13 13:27:04

Ah yes, you are right, I am wrong here, they actually cross off her name. I didn't register that. Yes crossing her name off is so wrong.
I had a mental picture of kindly, old ILs who she otherwise really likes.
But now I am picturing rude and obnoxious MIL thinking Hah this will show her.
So even though my point was if they are doing you a favour you should suck it up, I take it back. Yes they are doing you a favour but they are being really really rude.
Sorry for my earlier YABU, I now side with YANBU.
(fickle moi?)

LessMissAbs Thu 18-Apr-13 14:31:23

Yes, I still have that bloody envelope with my name, my own actual name, crossed out, and theirs written in its place, on a piece of forwarded mail from a few days ago. Kind of them to forward the mail, but theres just something about having your own name crossed out, as if you don't exist any more, and someone else's forced on you.

I am going to email MIL along the lines of "thank you for forwarding my mail. Theres no need to cross out by name and replace it with yours as, in common with many women, I did not change my name on marriage. My name is not <yourname> but remains <myname>."

I bet she won't accept it though. For some reason, they labour under the belief that I am some poverty stricken waif whom their son has taken under his wing to house, when in reality he is a student and I work in my profession.

StrangeGlue Thu 18-Apr-13 15:37:32

They are being dicks. You didn't join their family, you and your dh forged a new family which they are a branch of you are in no way owned by them and your name is not up for debate. You need to keep pointing it out and get your dh on side.

The only people making this an issue are them.

LittleBearPad Thu 18-Apr-13 16:45:32

I think some change of address cards are needed with both your names prominently shown. Send them to everyone and make sure MIL knows they've gone to everyone.

BegoniaBampot Thu 18-Apr-13 17:08:33

i'd have nothing to do with them till they behaved. this would really wind me up, they probably think it's funny.

ILiveInAPineappleCoveredInSnow Sat 20-Apr-13 19:41:27

My IL fell out with me when I double barrelled my name after marriage!!!

My MIL was the worst, which I couldn't understand as its not even her bloody real name!!!!

Screw them, I enjoyed giving my ds my surname! And I write every letter and card signed with my surname just to make a point!!!!

Jelly15 Sat 20-Apr-13 21:23:21

My MIL double barrelled her nameand FIL so DH had both their names. On our marriage he dropped her name and we became Mr and Mrs Jelly (FIL's name). We didn't bother tell MIL as we didn't want to hurt her feelings. However, she found out after seeing DS1 baby record book out on the kitchen unit and asked why was only Jelly written for the surname. I told her that I was just Jelly and so was DS, she went ape shit! So I told her I didn't keep my name so why should I take hers and DS didn't have my name so why should DS take hers. She was ranting and raving so DH told her he had dropped hers too.

ChairmanMeoww Sat 20-Apr-13 21:46:11

My Grandmother does this. About 5 minutes after our wedding ceremony she cornered DH and I and quite agressively asked why I was not changing my name, even though we had already told her weeks before, and my DM (her daughter) never changed her surname on marriage! It was pretty embarrassing as quite a few of our guests were well within earshot.

She refused to accept that I would stay Ms Mysurname and to this day still addresses birthday, christmas cards etc to Mrs DH'sSurname. Makes me so cross!!

jelly I think you were wrong not to even discuss it with her
I'm pretty sure she had good reasons to keep her own name for you to just drop it and not even tell her.especially her own son. sad

xkittyx Sat 20-Apr-13 22:24:31

jelly that sounds quite mean sad

GreenEggsAndNichts Sat 20-Apr-13 22:33:18

It would have been Jelly's DH's responsibility for discussing it, not hers, imo. He's the one who changed his name from the name he's always had. Jelly just took the name he decided to keep. He could have just as easily kept her part of the name and not his father's.

Honestly, double-barreled names for children are asking for trouble, anyway. I understand a couple marrying and deciding to keep both names, then giving that name to their children. However, when the children grow up and get married and both parts of the couple want to keep their names, what then? Quadruple barreled?

I say this as someone who kept her name so I understand wanting to do so.

yes, greeneggs I meant "you" as both of them

So first generation is double barrelled, second generation is quadruple barrelled, after that it might get a bit silly. Wouldn't it be easier to decide on a family name for your new family unit once you get married. In OP's case, that should clearly be OP's name!

squoosh Sat 20-Apr-13 23:14:26

People decide on their own names and their children's names. After that people can decide for themselves. I really can't be arsed worrying about what my great-great-great-great-great grandchildren's surname is.

Pilgit Sat 20-Apr-13 23:31:53

Not read the entire thread but I think they are being extremely rude and unreasonable! Your DH joined your family as much as you joined theirs - why does their name get to trump yours? This will all back fire on them in the end - my MIL has the attitude (and she has 3 sons) that you have a choice to make when your son marries - gain a daughter or lose a son.

For those saying she should suck it up - they are being aggressive and rude to the OP in the way they readdress things and insist on their name dominance. It is a form of bullying.

MaryMotherOfCheeses Sat 20-Apr-13 23:45:21

Oh it all sounds very Krays / faaaaaamily imo.

I wouldn't bother emailing. Rise above it.

sashh Sun 21-Apr-13 04:45:41

I have just thought of an evil plan.

Go to the post office and have a redirect put on the name your ILs use, I assume Mrs ILs.

So anything she redirects to you with her/Dhs name is automatically sent back to her.

HermioneHatesHoovering Sun 21-Apr-13 06:35:36

Just make sure any children have "yourSurnamehisSurname", in that order. Then if you ever split up you can just drop hissurname from their names wink

HermioneHatesHoovering Sun 21-Apr-13 06:44:12

And obviously you won't have to endure go to their birthday/wedding anniversary deathly boring celebrations, as you haven't actually been invited, so to turn up would be positively rude, wouldn't it? wink

KittieCat Sun 21-Apr-13 06:56:47

I kept my name when we married. Didn't realise FIL wasn't overly happy until we (after much agonising and upset on both DH and my parts) gave DS my surname as double barrelled didn't work etc.

This caused big ructions and I saw a nasty side of FIL. We don't really speak now, and the ILs don't really bother with DS. All really very sad as we used to get on really well.

I still see it as having been my choice to have kept my name and my and DHs choice to give our son whatever name we saw fit.

I still get post from the rest of DH's family assuming we all have DH's surname.

Ledkr Sun 21-Apr-13 07:04:26

Pil do this to me so do the GPS which I think is just old ness but pil should know better.
Even my birthday cheques so I can't cash them.
However if I directly spoke to them and they stil did it if seriously fall out with them especially as I kept my name for my existing children's benefit.
They sound weird with all the in our family have our name bollox

Isityouorme Sun 21-Apr-13 08:05:32

Buy thank you cards with your and DH names on in big bold print and post to parents each time they send mail on .... And stick printed from sender name labels on the envelope. Very formal and polite and the closest you'll get to sticking two fingers up in their face!

Are they the mafia? confused

Soupqueen Sun 21-Apr-13 08:34:40

My father in law does this. He sends parcels to Mrs DH's surname, I'm never in to receive them and have real problems picking them up from the sorting office because all my proof of ID is in my name.

exexpat Sun 21-Apr-13 10:51:40

Soupqueen - have you told your FiL about the post office/ID issue? That might actually make it register with him how silly he is being not to use your legal name.

I found that explaining to grandparents & aunts that I couldn't pay in cheques they had sent me in the wrong name was the only thing that made them stop.

hettie Sun 21-Apr-13 11:02:35

Some members of DH's family did this..... I thought it was hilarious especially as dh had actually taken my surname. But do you know what I didn't let it get to me and in the end they stopped writing to us altogether
People are weird, but you can chose how you react to it....

Soupqueen Sun 21-Apr-13 11:02:45

I have told him but he "forgets".

MmeThenardier Sun 21-Apr-13 20:47:29

I'm astonished at how rude they are. How disrespectful.

Given they seem to prefer passive agressive to confrontation I would choose the latter and initiate an out and out confrontation with them. I'd include evidence (the envelope), have DH present and make sure they are both there. Perhaps in a restaurant after a meal along the lines of

<produces exhibit a>
"I saw you'd crossed my name out and put the wrong one on, do you realise that isn't my name?"

"Why do you think it so important to you that I use your surname?"

"Do you realise I will never call myself this?"

"You say if I'm part of your family I have to have this name, I'm happy to not be part of your family, I married DH, not you. Does this mean we shouldn't get together anymore, ok, bye"

"Do you know what DH thinks of all this, would you like him to tell you?"

<takes deep breath>

Have I overdone it? I'm just incensed at their behaviour that they think its acceptable to presume to tell you (repeatedly) what your name is!

LessMissAbs Sun 21-Apr-13 22:04:22

Update. Didn't send my email to MIL. Instead I told DH to speak to her about it. I asked him today if he had done so, and got told he hasn't, and in a way which indicated he wasn't going to. Had an argument with DH and then phoned up MIL to set her straight.

Although I remained very calm, and mentioned it quite casually a slight hint of anger might have crept into my voice. I referred to the letter they had forwarded, with my surname crossed out and replaced with theirs, and thanked them for forwarding it, but that was not my surname as I had not changed my surname on marriage. "Oh" says MIL, sounding surprised, and then, sensing trouble, "OK then", and very quickly changed the subject.

So we will see if she sticks to it. Could be it was their way of making me feel part of the family, if that's all it was, then no harm done.

As for DH...

MmeThenardier Sun 21-Apr-13 22:46:13

oooh I love a good update!!

I just knew she wouldn't like an up front discussion!

Katisha Sun 21-Apr-13 22:52:34

Lets see if she can keep it up or whether there'll be the odd meaningful remark... As for DH grrr .

ComposHat Mon 22-Apr-13 02:14:46

"If you join this family, you take our name. Its not up for discussion"

This really made me laugh, it isn't like it is membership of some extraordinarily exclusive club, with a host of privileges attached?

What happens if you refuse? Will they rip up your 'Shufflebottom' (or whatever your husband's surname is) membership card and take your badge away?

You aren't joining their family, you've married your husband and you haven't become part of their goods and chatals.

Fucking loons. I'd far rather join the Manson family.

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