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to not understand the rules of double barrell names. Explanation needed!

(96 Posts)
heliumballoon1 Thu 14-Feb-13 10:56:47

Dh and I have decided to give our new baby both our surnames. I kept my surname when we married and want our DC to have my name too.

However, I'm not entirely sure how it works. Sometimes double barrell names are hyphenated and sometimes not. Why is this? And which one should we go for? Does a hyphen mean that the two names are one complete name and are always used together?

We may just decide to use just one name on a daily basis - does that mean it would be better not to use hyphen?

Advice needed please!

nickelbabe Fri 15-Feb-13 15:40:19

i view it as a feminist issue too.

StuntGirl Fri 15-Feb-13 15:31:22

Although it's not like I lose sleep over it. I view it is a feminist issue, some people don't. Horses for courses and all that.

StuntGirl Fri 15-Feb-13 15:29:29

Probably because the result of the male name dominated thing is some women like girl end up feeling that their name is never truly 'theirs', and that's quite sad to go through life without feeling like you own your own identity.

EuroShagmore Fri 15-Feb-13 15:19:34

I have a number of innovative swear alternatives I regularly employ during office hours!

ChaoticisasChaoticdoes Fri 15-Feb-13 15:18:06

If it's just a name then why do some people get so stroppy when the woman doesn't change her name?

nickelbabe Fri 15-Feb-13 15:05:26

sorry, that was to EuroShag...

ah, i see Girl - it does make sense like that, but it still sounds like you are seeing your original surname as a "for now" name.
but that's up to you, of course, and your reasoning with that extra explanation is much better than your original changing from dad's to husband's because you love him more wink

nickelbabe Fri 15-Feb-13 15:03:32


poor you.

EuroShagmore Fri 15-Feb-13 14:52:02

nickel I'm at work. I'm complying with our internet policy (sort of)! I can only swear properly when posting from home. It's rather odd because loads of people swear out loud here, including me, but typing swear words is a no no.

GirlOutNumbered Fri 15-Feb-13 14:50:29

Sorry I didn't make it crystal clear nickelback!

I guess in some part it's due to the fact that my mum married again and she had a different name, I was in my teens and I am not close to my dad. I hadn't really given it much thought till now. It's interesting thinking about it, maybe it's because I am still called by my old surname by friends, it's always been a nickname, so I don't notice if I miss it?

I don't know, perhaps a part of me is glad not to be called the same as my dad, like I have moved on from that?

nickelbabe Fri 15-Feb-13 14:46:30

no, you said you talked about double-barrelled, not about him taking your name.

StuntGirl Fri 15-Feb-13 14:46:26

Sorry, xpost.

So you had a discussion and went down a traditional route. Cool. I do still feel sad that you at no point in your life felt your name was 'yours', and was simply transient until you got married. What if you'd never got married?

I wonder why men don't seem to feel this ambivalence fowards their names (which if we're going down that route, is their fathers name anyway)? Or perhaps they do but as circumstance dictates they don't often have the same opportunity to ditch it?

BackforGood Fri 15-Feb-13 14:43:42

No, I was in assembly this morning and some poor child was called out for their certificate, and they had a triple barrelled surname.

GirlOutNumbered Fri 15-Feb-13 14:42:07

Nope...see above. We talked about double barrelled. I don't think anything like that is just assumed in this day and age is it...?
Loads of people asked if I was keeping name/taking her when we said we were getting married. It seems quite common to not too.
I have friends that did completely make up a surname, sounds like a superhero, it's pretty cool.

StuntGirl Fri 15-Feb-13 14:40:05

Another question which probably sounds like an attack but isn't meant to be - your husband "would have" considered taking your name. That implies no conversation on names took place. Did you have any discussions? Was it simply assumed (by you, him or both) that you would take his name?

GirlOutNumbered Fri 15-Feb-13 14:38:43

I gave my son his fathers name as I wasn't bothered about continuing my name. We are not a close family (my father that is). That's the only reason. We did toy with double barrelled for him, but our names are too comical together.

aldiwhore Fri 15-Feb-13 14:38:26

I had no problem 'carrying' my father's name throughout my life, but that doesn't mean I have to leave it behind, nor does it mean I am desperate to keep it.

For me it was about a choice. When I had a 'natural' choice to change my name I did... for me it was when I got married. I suppose I have my father's name now and my husband's (who has also now adopted my father's name) ... it could get confusing!

I 'could' have created my own name at any point in my life though, and I would not have an issue with anyone who did.

MY name happened to be my father's, but it became my own. I love my name, and it IS part of me, I am emotionally attached to it, I LIKE it, I didn't want to give it up because I was expected to as a woman... DH has had more 'stick' than me for taking 'my' name. It's a non issue. Likewise, if a woman is happy to take her DH's name, so what. So long as no one is forced, each to their own.

I think the worst 'insult' I've had is that I'm trying to up my social status, all I can say to that is MEH... I could have upped it in many other ways. I'm hardly fixated on climbing the class ladder if I drive i 15 year old Nissan Micra and rent a 3 bed semi!

I do loathe people having general opinions on me based on assumption.

nickelbabe Fri 15-Feb-13 14:34:15

and shit with a 1?

go on, just swear, it's MN not nethuns! wink

nickelbabe Fri 15-Feb-13 14:33:46

Euro did you really just spell Wanky with two vs? grin

EuroShagmore Fri 15-Feb-13 14:30:32

How can you not feel any ties to a name that you have used throughout your life? confused

We will use both names if we have children (no sure if we will hyphenate or not yet). If anyone thinks that's vvanky, I couldn't give a shiny sh1t, frankly. For me, it's a feminist issue.

StuntGirl Fri 15-Feb-13 14:30:17

I have no problem with people choosing one way or the other girl, at the end of the day its your choice.

I'm curious why you didn't give your son your name originally though, before you were married? Again, why the automatic deference to the father's name? (Not an attack, an actual question).

nickelbabe Fri 15-Feb-13 14:25:54

exactly - what okthan said.

you obviously didn't just take your DH's name because you didn't think about it and just accepted convention - you clearly did it deliberately.
but you do sound like you're trying to make excuses for it.

take your DH's name if that's your choice, but don't fob it off as giving up your father's name in favour of your DH. it's your name you gave up.

GirlOutNumbered Fri 15-Feb-13 14:18:09

I didn't think you did need one family name no, but before we were married I had a different name to my son and I hated it. I never thought about getting married before, but thought that I would actually like to be married and have a family name. I never realised how traditional I was I guess.

Yes, we did think about whose name to have, my husband would have given serious consideration to it, if I had been adamant I wanted to keep mine but I wasn't. The choice to me was either my fathers family name or my husbands family name. I was happy with husbands that's all. I guess either my dad doesn't mean that much to me or I really do just think its a name and took the nicest one....

Not sure if that makes any sense and its just my feeling anyway, I appreciate its not the same for everyone. It's nice that people can choose.

Viviennemary Fri 15-Feb-13 14:17:37

I think this trend for double barrelled names is a bit silly. And I hope in will die out soon. The old rule used to be double barrelled with hyphen then names always used together and filed under first letter of first surname. And double barrelled without hyphen last name usually used for filing purposes.

ironhorse Fri 15-Feb-13 14:16:28

i always think a surname with a hyphen in it is seen as a double barrelled name however if its just firstname mysurname othersurname then the mysurname in the middle is seen as a middle name - it doesnt make their/your surname double barrelled.

okthen Fri 15-Feb-13 14:08:02

GirlOutnumbered- you say it's 'just a name' then list several reasons why you wanted to change it. Clearly it is loaded with some significance for you, ergo not 'just a name'.

Did your husband consider changing his? Would he? That's not an attack on your husband specifically btw. How many men REALLY would change their name?and if not why not? The answer to that would explain my issue. Because if there's a reason men wouldn't, why does that not apply to women.

As for feeling like a family unit by having the same name... I don't get it. Surely you don't need a shared name to feel like a unit?

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