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Babys Surname - how important is it?

(70 Posts)
Seasidegirly Fri 02-May-14 15:51:16

Hi - wasn't sure which section to put this but I wonder if someone could give me some insight into situation. I am 5 months pregnant with my first child at 41. Pregnancy was a total shock and the father (who's a bit younger than me) did not take the news very well at all. At the beginning of the pregnancy I said the baby could have the fathers surname with my surname as a double barrelled name. The dad seemed to come to terms with the pregnancy and we talked about first names and started to look forward to it. Fast forward and a couple of months and the dad said he did not want to be with me anymore but would always be there for the child.

Anyways, after speaking to a few friends, they suggested that I didn't give the child the double barrelled surname - just my surname as they were unconvinced that he would stick around (he's not been to the 13 or 20 week scan). So, this week I have told him that I would put his surname as a middle name. This has totally flipped him. Said I was a complete liar from the start of the pregnancy and he didn't believe he was the father anymore as I didn't want the child to have his surname. He has now posted a pic of the 13 week scan pic through my door and said he I would not hear from him again . I am gutted. My question is how important is the surname to the dad? Was this just an excuse that he needed to do one? Thanks

AwakeCantSleep Fri 02-May-14 16:18:03

Sorry, no advice (I am female, single and don't have kids) but in your shoes I would give the child your own surname.

I am very surprised how many unmarried mothers in this country give their children the father's surname. I would want to have the same name as my child. This would mean either we'd all have the same surname (via marriage) or, if marriage for some reason wasn't on the cards (there are signs the relationship won't last) then the child would have my surname. It doesn't make the father any less important but it does reflect the fact that even if the dad won't stick around, I always will be there and be the primary carer for the child.

If the dad is very keen to have the same surname as his child he could always change his surname to yours.

yellowcar Fri 02-May-14 16:21:56

Sounds like he s just having a tantrum because he's not getting his own way. The question is how important is the surname to you? If he wants a relationship with the baby he will be back.

My ex went mental when I told him our dc would be having both of our surnames, threatened all sorts of shit like he would have nothing to do with the baby etc. it's just a manchld reaction. His Mother even said dc would be a bastard because they had my surname too! Unbelievable!

Needless to say, dc got both our names and even though he is a total wanker, he does see dc once a week.

If you think he will do one, do you want your child to have his surname for ever more? Don't be blackmailed into doing it to keep him in the picture. Sounds like you'll be doing all the raising of the baby so it's totally your call.

Olddear Fri 02-May-14 16:22:31

I would give your child your surname. Wouldn't give it another thought.

PeaceLillyDoge Fri 02-May-14 16:23:53

Wow he sounds delightful.

There is no way in hell id give the baby his name. You're doing all the hard work, why should he get any of the credit?

Giving baby's their dads name is a very archaic and British tradition, many other cultures do it differently. I personally see no reason to continue it, especially in such circumstances.

Dukketeater Fri 02-May-14 16:28:20

If I had an unplanned baby out of wedlock it would have my name.

A planned baby in a committed relationship would have the mans name

ZenNudist Fri 02-May-14 16:28:21

He sounds like a utter cock. Best off no dad than a selfish resentful brat of a man.sorry OP.

Definitely give dc your surname. Set the CSA on your ex.

PoundingTheStreets Fri 02-May-14 16:29:22

Definitely give the baby your name. If he refuses to be involved with his child because you're going to give him/her your surname, then it's almost certain that he will at best use tantrums, threats and manipulation to get what he wants throughout the whole of your child's life, or at worst disappear completely.

His behaviour is screaming at you to give the baby your name, not his.

As a single parent with care, it's probably going to be you taking the child to the doctor/dentist, you enrolling and taking the child to nursery/school with all that involves (letters home, parents' evenings), you taking the child on holiday possibly abroad. You can do all those things without having the same surname as your child (I don't) but it is easier and smoother to share the same name. And if your baby's father disappears completely, as 1 in 5 do, it's a severance less obvious.

PoundingTheStreets Fri 02-May-14 16:29:33

Congratulations on your baby BTW. flowers

Thurlow Fri 02-May-14 16:30:36

Overall, I don't think it is that important - it's just a name after all. Their first name is different from yours, so what is the big deal about a surname being different?

But in your situation this isn't a theoretical question. He doesn't sound as though you can be sure he will be around. You can double-barrel by all means, if it sounds nice and also if you want to acknowledge him as a father even if he ends up not being in your child's life much. There's nothing wrong with doing that at all.

However if I were in your situation I just give them my surname. And I say that as someone whose DC has their father's surname, not mine.

BuzzardBird Fri 02-May-14 16:37:17

Don't lumber your child with the name of a man he/she might never meet. The child will always have you in their life so give the child your surname.

Congratulations on your baby thanks

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 02-May-14 16:40:50

I was in roughly the same situation as you when I had my DS. His father and I registered him together, DS has my surname exclusively and there is no mention of his father's surname in his name at all. No-one is offended because we are all grown-ups.

Suggest that's what you tell this guy....

Horsemad Fri 02-May-14 16:42:15

There is no way on this planet my baby would have the father's surname if I wasn't married to him. No way, no how.

Yama Fri 02-May-14 16:43:18

It shouldn't matter to a nice man. A man who respects women and would ultimately put the child's welfare above all else.

Give the baby your name. You can only really be sure that you will always be there for your child.

HillyHolbrook Fri 02-May-14 16:43:32

Congrats on your baby OPthanks

I would give them my name in those circumstances too. You will always be there for the child, they are yours, they are your family and take your family name. Your name represents your family and if he isn't going to be present or properly involved then he shouldn't expect your DC to take his.

DP and I have been together 7 years and engaged for two, we only aren't married because we wanted a house and a baby more than a wedding and that's how the money went. Our DC will take his name when they're born, though I'm estranged from my dad and have his name so it would make no sense to give mine as even I don't want it.grin

handfulofcottonbuds Fri 02-May-14 16:43:58

I gave my DS his Dad's surname, I loved him and didn't see that we would ever split up but we did when he was 3. My DS has a little contact with his Dad but that's it.

I wish my DS had my name as buzzard is right, regardless of what happens in a relationship, your DC will always be with you.

Also, I would have liked my DS to carry on my family name when he has DC.

Mothergothel1111 Fri 02-May-14 16:50:02

I have two friends who gave dads surname, both of which are now seperated and deeply regret giving dads name.

HandfulOfSweets Fri 02-May-14 16:52:57

My DS has no contact whatever with his dad and I've still given him his surname, I believe every child should be in their fathers surname.

Andcake Fri 02-May-14 17:05:20

Give him your name sods what he thinks. How much to you does it matter that you have your dad's not mums surname? And would you ever have changed your name in marriage. Ds has both ours not hyphenated but he can choose when older. Why should a baby have fathers surname - are men better than us shock

croquet Fri 02-May-14 17:21:02

Give it your name. There's no telling whether he'll stick around - sounds like baby will be mostly with you. Deffo your name!

Congratulations on your pregnancy!!

V v quickly he'll realise there's a LOT more to being a dad then the surname!! lol

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 02-May-14 17:23:37

"Was this just an excuse that he needed to do one?"

Oh yes. It's what's known in the trade as a 'clean pair of heels'. Doesn't mean he gets off paying maintenance, however. The only time your baby will need his surname is on the support cheques. smile

NewNameForSpring Fri 02-May-14 19:30:33

Not only do I think you should give the baby your own name but I would be grateful that such an idiot is bowing out of your life. Imagine having to hand your baby or small child over to such an idiot for their contact time. FGS go it alone. Could you really trust him with your precious child.

weatherall Fri 02-May-14 19:36:48

My DCs have my name.

Wouldn't have it any other way.

I too don't understand in married mums giving the baby the fathers name.

But then I don't understand women changing their name upon marriage either (unless absent/abusive father).

Charley50 Fri 02-May-14 19:41:24

On hindsight I wish my son had the same surname as me rather than his dads. I knew the relationship wouldn't last and I think that at the time I wanted him to have a link to his dad through a shared name.
Fastforward 10 years; they have a strong relationship which I imagine would be exactly the same if DS had my surname, but I would prefer my son to have my name. My son is happy to has his dads name though.
Your ex sounds like a prick; you'll be a great mum by yourself, and pricks always try that 'might not be my baby' shit. Mine did.
It is nice bringing up baby on your own in many ways..no arguments about housework, laziness or differing parenting styles.
So good luck and give baby your name (unless it's Janus or something equally wrong!!))

Charley50 Fri 02-May-14 19:42:19

Btw Why can't I be succinct like Any Fucker??

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