One of those never-ending 'Mrs Hisname' threads.

(47 Posts)

I've had versions of the same conversation with three lettings agents today.

First they ask my name and title. Then they ask who'll be living in the property - so I say, it'll be me and my DH. 'Ah, so that's Mr and Mrs LRD then'. So, I say, no, sorry, his name's DHname (because they're filling in forms for us). 'Ah, so it's Mr and Mrs DHsname'. No. We have different names. I'm Ms LRDName and He's Mr DHname.

'Sorry, this is a one-bedroom flat, we can't take sharers, only a single person or a couple'.

So I explain no, we're married, we just have different names but they're welcome to put whichever name they like on the paperwork.

'Well we have to have your real name for the credit checks'.



And naturally, I have three emails confirming the conversation, one addressed to 'Mr and Mrs LRDsname', one to 'Mr and Mrs SomeShitMisspelling', and one (yay!) to 'Mr and Ms LRDsname'. Well, they get half points for the title I guess!

It is 2013, isn't it, not 1952?

ChairmanWow Wed 06-Mar-13 10:09:21

We get this all the time. DH is actually more laid back about it than me, and when he gets called Mr Wow he lets it slide. Our issue is our DS (and DD when she arrives next couple of weeks) has my surname. We tossed a coin because we couldn't decide, yet he gets birthday cards etc from family members, including on my side, with DH's surname. Am going to start getting shirty soon because he'll start to read and I don't want him thinking there's anything strange about having his mum's surname.

There there's the couple of comments I've had about how I must have somehow forced my husband to do this, implying I'm a bitch and he's pathetic.

Remind me of the year again...? angry

LaFataTurchina Sun 03-Mar-13 12:45:47

Gah! Threads like this make me so glad I'm foreign. At least if/when DP and I end up getting married and I stay Ms Turchina I'll get to say "No, it's Ms Turchina. Women in my country don't traditionally change their name when they get married."

Indeed. smile

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Sun 03-Mar-13 07:35:41

Hooray for nice agent, LRD.

kim147 Sat 02-Mar-13 22:27:57

It's going to take a long time to change all these attitudes. But they need challenging so people don't make assumptions about titles / surnames etc. People are all too used to the way it has been.

Jenijena Sat 02-Mar-13 21:48:57

Emailed my uni alumni's dept a couple of months ago to explain that not only were we at the same address, DH and I were married so they could just send one magazine out to us rather than two.

Email from My first name last name referring to my husbandfirstname husbandlastname and our 2010 marriage.

Got a round robin begging letter email the other day.. Dear Mrs Husbandlastname.

Agggh! Replied to the, very promptly telling them politley where to shove their mrs husbandlastname. No reply...

Schooldidi Fri 01-Mar-13 18:05:42

I had to correct someone today, first time ever that it's mattered (previously it's only ever been cold callers or dp's mum winding him up).

As part of our safeguarding procedures at school, we regularly have photos of all staff circulated so all pupils can recognise us all and know if we have people in school who shouldn't be there. I was listed as MRS. I am not and never have been a mrs, and even if I was married I would be Ms. I have emailed the deputy head and informed him that he is wrong and I expect it to be corrected asap.

Well, now I'm happy. smile

I saw a fourth letting agent today (and I think we've found a house, which is great), and she not only called me 'Ms' without asking first, she also commented politely on DH's surname while asking how to spell it, instead of being rude about.

Very reassuring.

eldritch - totally agree, it's so much funnier when it's DH correcting people. Especially as it pre-empts the inevitable 'doesn't your husband mind?'.

EldritchCleavage Fri 01-Mar-13 13:27:02

I'm married and Miss Firstname Birthname (the Miss is traditional in my profession, irrespective of actual marital status, and I like it -reminds me of being told off at school, for some reason it was always Miss Birthname that was bellowed down the corridor at me, probably as in their ire the teachers couldn't trust themselves to remember which Cleavage sister I was).

It seems irrationally to annoy people that this is the position. I enjoy that. It's even better when DH tells people off for getting it wrong, rather than me.

SconeRhymesWithGone Fri 01-Mar-13 03:18:10

For whatever reason, “Ms.” seems more accepted in the US than in the UK, which surprises me because, as a whole, the US is more conservative politically and socially. I am happy that “Ms.” is pretty much the default in the US, especially in professional settings.

I have been married 25+ years and did not take my husband’s name. I have never had a major problem with it being accepted, and I live in the South where it is less common. Sometimes people seem surprised when it comes up for the first time, but nothing more. One thing that is clear is that fewer young women are keeping their names in the US now than in years past, and while I certainly accept their right to have a choice, I do think it reflects a wider retreat from feminism, which does concern me.

I am not militant about correcting people in casual, non-professional settings. If DH calls the plumber or the electrician, but I am the one at home when they come, I don't get too bothered when they call me "Mrs. DH."

Fittingly, just just as I am typing this, I am watching the documentary "Makers" about the leaders of second wave feminism in the US, and was just reminded of a key slogan from the movement that "the personal is political." That perhaps accounts for some of the strong feelings around the issue of titles and names.

I don't mind being called 'Mrs Dh' in a casual context, or by someone who has no reason to know, at all.

PeggyCarter Thu 28-Feb-13 19:03:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

It's definitely getting married IME. I might occasionally have had to explain I was 'Ms' not 'Miss' before, but nothing at this persistent level.

I also notice that people are terribly apologetic to DH for calling him 'Mr LRDsname' when they discover it's not his name, as if that's somehow appalling because it's really not his name, whereas I'm just being picky.

Mandytm Thu 28-Feb-13 18:54:33

Hullygully lol, too familiar.

I really don't care if people get offended tbh, I will always use Ms unless corrected... because it is correct! and also because it is sexist to do one thing for women and thing for men.

Schooldidi Thu 28-Feb-13 18:52:44

Well I'm not married and have never had this problem at all. The only person ever to call me Mrs DPname is his mum and she knows full well what she's doing, she's dropping hints (to him) that we should be married.

I was lead tenant on the house we rented together and now I'm owner 1 on the mortgage, I believe in the case of the mortgage it went on who earns the most.

Maybe the problem was getting married? I'll just nor bother with that then.

Hullygully Thu 28-Feb-13 18:38:46

I get this too.

So, you are Mrs Dh and dc name

No, I am Ms Myname

But you're married?


Stares of stupefaction


Bue Thu 28-Feb-13 18:33:02

Don't worry LRD, your feminism is your vaccination against my bite grin


Wow, that's bad mandy.

I know I'm the lead tenant on our current lease - sounds as if I am lucky! hmm

bue - just so long as you don't bite any of us ...

Bue Thu 28-Feb-13 18:23:59

I've just fled here from the 'other thread'. Proud to be rabidly feminist, think I may add cagey to my list of characteristics, just for good measure.

Mandytm Thu 28-Feb-13 18:18:58

I work in lettings and there is no legal difference for couples married or not when it comes to renting property as a cohabiting couple.

Another irritating issue I had with a lettings agent 4 years ago was naming the "lead tenant" on the deposit form - the person who the deposit cheque is posted to on vacating the property. I noticed it was my (at the time) boyfriends name listed as lead tenant. As all housing paperwork and bills were organised by me, I asked the agent why it wasn't my name, they said "I don't know, i think it's always the man."

Not how we do things in my agency!

Yeah, I think it must be the agents being idiots. Two people couldn't possibly count as an HMO. Round here it's four or more unrelated people living together - I think it might vary by area, though.

I've no issue with other people who choose to be Mrs, or who use their husband's surname, or whatever it may be ... I just find it annoying that this attitude is so common.

It really does feel as if, once you make a fuss about it, they've marked you down as someone they don't really respect enough to treat professionally. It's the same once they realize DH isn't British - sort of 'oh, we needn't bother being polite now'. It is a bit shit.

LadyRainicorn Thu 28-Feb-13 17:55:19

Plus the council would have difficulties proving a case against just 2 people sharing. It's meant to stop landlords cramming 8 people in 2 rooms etc.

I took my husband's name as it was an opportunity to lose my father's name. We could've made an entirely new name free of patriarchal associations but we were lazy.

LadyRainicorn Thu 28-Feb-13 17:52:14

The legal thing with renting is about homes of multiple occupation, which 2 unrelated, un 'together' people would fall under and cause licencing and insurance issues for the landlord I.e extra cost.

But an unmarried couple would not fall under this definition, so I'd go with the agents being idiots.

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