If you didn't change your surname when you got married

(68 Posts)
OrbisNonSufficit Sun 17-Mar-13 16:00:30

I haven't changed my surname, so DH and I have different surnames. So far, so normal. But everyone I talk to assumes that kids would all have the same surname and it would probably be his surname (we don't have any yet, TTC at the moment). I don't see why. I want one each (one kid with his name, one with mine) which seems fair. Otherwise I'm the only person in the family with a different name. What do you think?

NormaSpoonOeufEggcher Wed 20-Mar-13 00:00:15

Although I have just checked on Wiki hmm and it says that the naming convention is not as I thought it was.

They don't have family names.

You are named XXXson or XXXdottir. XXX is Usually the father's name. I thought that the XXXdottir was usually the mother's name, but apparently that is a choice you can make, rather than the norm.

NormaSpoonOeufEggcher Tue 19-Mar-13 23:52:06

I like the Icelandic naming convention

msrisotto Tue 19-Mar-13 19:35:38

I don't have kids yet but wouldn't consider NOT giving them my name. We would likely just give them both of our names which would be a lengthy 6 syllables but necessary. Other than that, I suppose I would have considered coming up with a new family name.

Frankly if my children are old enough and responsible enough to make a decision about getting married and spending the rest of their lives with someone, I'd trust them to make a decision about what to do with two double-barrelled surnames.

Mandytm Tue 19-Mar-13 16:22:54

Personally I don't like double barrelling. If we all did it I just think about what a mouthful our great great grandkids names will be.

I kept my name and am now pregnant. We are not sure yet if it'll have mine or my dh name. I don't see a problem with future siblings having the other surname. We will all know we are family, just as much as I know I'm married but I happen to have my own name.

One option we've discussed is that if we pick a first or second name from one side, then the baby could have the surname of the other.

ChairmanWow Tue 19-Mar-13 07:35:49

We couldn't decide but knew we'd want them to share a surname. When I was pregnant with DS I suggested we did it on the gender of the first child - DH's surname if a boy, mine if a girl. DH liked the randomness of tossing a coin. We did this and I won, so they have my surname. The level of surprise from some peope about them having my name is interesting. In fact we celebrated DS's 2nd birthday last week and 2 relatives sent him cards and cheques in my husband's name (cheques to me with DH's surname so totally useless) despite a gentle reminder from me last time.

I think my MIL has decided I'm a bossy madam for being 'awkward' about the name thing as well, which peeves me. DH couldn't care less.

HopingItllBeOK Tue 19-Mar-13 00:06:29

I am Ms H, DP is Mr J, DS is Master H-J. Both names sound perfectly normal and follow the conventional British form ie; -ton, -grave, -son endings but are actually quite uncommon and we are both the end of the line for our surnames. Despite my having dozens of cousins there is not one person to carry my name on due to a mix of blended families and a glut of female cousins who took their husbands name or male cousins who only had daughters so the name would likely have ended with me. DP's family is similar and so neither of us were prepared to lose our names, but could at least see the other's point in wanting to keep their own name so we compromised by double barrelling.

The idea was that we would both change our names by deed poll to the double barrelled version, but DS is 18 months old now and we still haven't gotten around to it yet blush We are planning to marry at some point though so the new plan is for DP to change his name by deed poll to H-J which I will then take on marriage. That is purely for cheapskate purposes, since I would have to pay to change it by deed poll but don't if I take his name on marriage.

My eldest DSs have their fathers surname, so right now we have 4 different surnames in one household of 5 people. So far none of us have exploded so I figure any other name changes can wait a while.

My husband offered to take my name but I declined despite not really wanting to change my name, as it seemed weird and unfair hmm
These days we agree that if we got married now we'd either all have my name or me and the kids would have my name. Its nicer, it means more to me and I just don't like my married name as much.

JacqueslePeacock Mon 18-Mar-13 12:02:45

We have given our DC both our surnames. Not double barrelled, just the two words as the surname (like you we thought double barrelling would sound awful, as well as like fake landed gentry). it's not ideal as it's still quite a long name, but it feels right. I definitely wouldn't like my DC to have different surnames from each other - it might feel as though one was more "mine" and one was more "his", if that makes sense.

dublinrose37 Mon 18-Mar-13 12:01:33

I didn't change my name. Our kids have both names but the older one ( 16 yr) has dropped his and just uses mine day to day although passports etc will have both. I imagine if the younger one wants to do the same at some point he will. I know its considered "odd" but I don't care. All the comments go over my head most of the time.

StellaNova Mon 18-Mar-13 09:43:56

I didn't change my name. My sons both have DHs surname.

They have both at some point asked if all girls are called Nova and all boys are called DHsurname. (I have two sisters who have also kept their name so it is a good guess!). So I don't think it would be confusing, quite the opposite, it seems natural.

Babieseverywhere Mon 18-Mar-13 09:25:22

When I married I kept my surname and my husband took my name. Our four children all have the same surname too, nice and easy.

My surname was important to me and our children are the last of this branch of our small family with this name Iyswim. Whereas my husband's original surname is far more common and he has a large extended family who carry on the name.

I like everyone in our family sharing the same name and I also label coats, wellies and school uniform with surname only.

I am surprised that more men don't take their partners names when they get married. That said our bank really struggled with this concept and it took a few phone calls and a copy of the marriage certificate to get our bank account altered.

CelticPromise Mon 18-Mar-13 09:14:35

One poster above said children with different surnames would be assumed to be half siblings. I have thought of this, but really who cares? Everyone who matters will know who their mum and dad are. I don't really mind if people I don't know make incorrect assumptions about my family.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Mon 18-Mar-13 01:40:55

Bump

Beveridge Mon 18-Mar-13 00:01:30

I didn't change my name on marriage but have ended up with 2 DCs with DH's surname. I toyed with girls-mothers surname, boys fathers surname but we had a girl first and she has First name, middle name, my surname as another middle name, DH surname.

So regret it now as we had a boy next and DH really wanted his son to have his surname (fair enough) so thats what he got but it was impossible to fit my surname in as well plus the length of name was getting ridiculous(with rude initials too!).

If only I'd had a crystal ball and could see we'd have one of each-DD's last 2 names would have been reversed so we would have had a nice balance.It was my decision entirely to give DD her dads name as he only had strong feelings about having a son with his surname-I think I thought it would blow too many minds to give her mine, but I wouldnt have felt that if we'd had her brother first!

OrbisNonSufficit Sun 17-Mar-13 23:45:24

GoblinGold you made me laugh with "Frankly, if they're confused about that, they've got bigger problems than their surname." - that's exactly how I see it. How hard can it be to explain?

Which is pretty much how I feel about them having different surnames from each other. My official plan (currently, will see how it goes when I have actual vs theoretical DCs) is to tell them that the world hasn't come up with a good way of dealing with names for families so this is how we're doing it.

Good tip on the birth certificate though, it is something I've thought about.

GoblinGold Sun 17-Mar-13 23:32:30

We decided before DC were born that they would have their father's surname. Double-barrelling for us doesn't work due to the name combination and although we thought about the middle name option, it just didn't sound as good as the other names I had decided on we liked. Also my DS is named after my dad and my DD is named after my grandmother. It seemed fair that if I 'got' the first names then DH could have the surnames wink

I've had the 'won't they be confused about who their mother is' question. Frankly, if they're confused about that, they've got bigger problems than their surname.

My only 'official' slight problem was at passport control coming back into the UK. DH had my son and their passports, I had DD and our passports. Passport control guy insisted on seeing us all together. I'm sure it would have been fine if I'd been there on my own with her/him but I probably will take their birth certificates with me next time.

oldqueencrepey Sun 17-Mar-13 23:18:10

Haven't read whole thread, so sorry if this has already been aired. I have ended up with both dcs having my surname and dh's surname (but not hyphenated) which means that effectively they have his surname, which I am not thrilled by. A good friend and her dh decided on a new family surname when they had a child. They all have the same name but it is neither of the adults' surnames iyswim.

nooka Sun 17-Mar-13 23:17:59

The same is true for Canada - it's only Quebec that doesn't allow name changing.

louisianablue2000 Sun 17-Mar-13 23:13:18

I didn't change my name when I got married, the kids have their father's surname. We briefly spoke about going double barrelled and/or using the Spanish system (father's surname mother's surname, carrying the father's surname to the next generation) because DH's Mum is from South America and he was born there so it would be valid but decided to go with the most conventional option. I wouldn't have given them different surnames from each other, I think that would make most people assume they were half rather than full siblings.

It does make me laugh that most people assume that the namechange on marriage tradition in England is the same everywhere, when people ask if DH minds that I haven't changed my name I always tell them his mother didn't because she is from South America and they don't do it there (incidentally historically women didn't change their name in Scotland either which is why Scottish gravestones still have women's maiden name rather than their married name).

edam Sun 17-Mar-13 23:07:07

Calypso, Europe isn't one country with one law (although clearly the Eurocrats are trying...). The law in Spain is different to the law in the Netherlands to the law in Belgium etc. etc. etc.

edam Sun 17-Mar-13 23:00:50

(too much of a mouthful to have both names, I mean, it'd be five syllables).

blueshoes Sun 17-Mar-13 23:00:33

My dcs have their father's surname (English).

The dcs attend Sunday Mandarin school and in that school, their surname is mine (Chinese).

edam Sun 17-Mar-13 23:00:27

I kept my surname. When pg with ds, I wanted to give him my surname but assumed he'd have dh's as well. Dh mumbled agreement but actually when we came to register ds he decided to go with my name alone. I was shocked and queried if he was really sure, but he was and has never had second thoughts. He says his surname is v. common and boring (true) and it was too much of a mouthful. He gave ds his Dad's name as a middle instead.

Has never caused any real problems except the odd raised eyebrow - we moved somewhere suburban where many people are very conventional but hey, let them chunter, no skin off our noses.

jennybeadle Sun 17-Mar-13 23:00:26

I definitely don't think that what name your DC have matters, but they should certainly have the same name as each other.

(feel very strongly about this having an unexpected DC3!)

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