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Would I encounter problems having a different surname to my child?

(59 Posts)
KatyS36 Tue 04-Aug-09 18:33:33

Hi all,

Last year I got married and didn't change my name. This was primarily as I didn't want to change it at work (I've published under it and am known in my field by it, plus it is quite distinctive) and I thought having two names would be difficult (e.g. having to book work travel documentation under a different name to which you are known).

I have always said that informally I am happy to use my married name and we get Christmas cards to Mr & Mrs. I regard this as our family name. I'm happy, my husband is happy (he doesn't care either way) and my in-laws are happy.

I'm pregnant with our first child. We both want the child to have my partners name only, we don't want to go double-barrelled. This will mean I have a different name to my child on all paperwork.

Is this likely to cause any problems? I don't really care if people approve or not, I'm just after knowing if this is likely to throw up things I haven't thought of.

thoughts please

DidEinsteinsMum Tue 04-Aug-09 18:36:19

I have found problems in that a lot of medical and school letters come addressed to Mrs X instead of Miss Y. It is major annoyance to me and does cause confusion with medical appointments. Only problem found.

K999 Tue 04-Aug-09 18:38:01

I have a different surname to dd2 but tbh hasnt caused any problems so far! smile

Jaquelinehyde Tue 04-Aug-09 18:44:27

I've found no problems so far, and my Mum had a different name to me and my 3 older brothers (but the same name as my 3 younger siblings) and it never caused any problems.

janeite Tue 04-Aug-09 18:47:33

I have a different name to my children - never been a prob at all.

teamcullen Tue 04-Aug-09 18:48:22

Im not married, Kids have dads name. I have no problems.

I get called Mrs B rather than my own name at school but that doesnt bother me.

throckenholt Tue 04-Aug-09 18:49:43

I don't think it is uncommon now. I use my maiden name for work, and me things, and my married name for the kid related things. Quite a few people I know the mother has a different name from the kids.

By the way - mine have my surname as a second middle name rather than double barrelled.

alypaly Tue 04-Aug-09 18:50:07

Both my children have their dads surname as we never got married and we decide to have his incase we did eventually.
Unfortunately we are now extinct as a couple but noone seems to attach a stigma to it at school and the children are not worried either

bran Tue 04-Aug-09 18:52:11

I didn't change my name when I got married. DS has a different surname to both DH and I (for complicated but boring reasons to do with FIL's inability to fill out a birth cert properly). DD has a different surname again because her adoption hasn't been finalised yet. The only issue we've ever had has been at passport control, so we always carry birth certs and adoption certs when we travel.

bananabrain Tue 04-Aug-09 22:19:39

No probems here either, though again people almost always address me as Mrs 'dc's name'- and strangely sometimes even if I do correct them it doesn't register and they continue calling me that anyway! I don't mind whatever they call me smile

giantkatestacks Tue 04-Aug-09 22:22:39

No problems at all - though as others have said you do get used to being Mrs Whatever as school even though you're not, and in some cases you never were, and its quite offensive as the school know you're not with Mr Whatever anymore anyway [rant over].

The passports are electronic anyway with parents names on (I assume) - I've never had any problem with that anyway when we have been abroad and my ds' dad hasnt been there...

TigerDrivesAgain Tue 04-Aug-09 22:25:15

No problems whatsoever not even school or doctors getting in a pickle over this. I think it's completely normal.

littleducks Tue 04-Aug-09 22:26:48

My kids have a diff surname to both me and dh (long story) it doesnt really cause any issues apart from the following occassion:

dd age 3 had a parcel posted to her (membership pack to tumble tots) but we were out so i took the 'sorry i missed you card' to the sorting office

the woman on the counter asked for my id, so i showed her it, she did a big double take and then announced to queuue that this was no good she needed id for dds name, i showed her my 3 yr old and said she didnt have much id

she agreed that was true and said so do you just look after them, i said she is my daughter, she did big shock shock shock faces and she has a diff surname to you

by this time she had the parcel so we just left without offering her an explanantion

so the moral of the story is you may encounter huge 'problems' with slightly crazy people but should otherwise be ok

seeker Tue 04-Aug-09 22:29:32

We have three last names in this family - I am Myname, dp is Hisname and the dcs are Myname-Hisname.

Never been the slightest trouble to anyone.

cat64 Tue 04-Aug-09 22:31:46

Message withdrawn

treetroppo Tue 04-Aug-09 22:35:44

Not at all. 2DSs aged 4 and 2 - take my DH's name. Never ever had even the slightest problem. Keep your name.

ilovemydogandmrobama Tue 04-Aug-09 22:37:06

DCs have DP's surname.

Has been a problem sometimes when travelling, specifically with the airline, rather than immigration. I carry the long form birth certificates as it has my name on it and is the only document that 'proves' I am mom.

Had a similar experience as LittleDucks at post office smile. DP went to get her package and they said it could only be released to DD, so he said, 'fine, I'll go home and tell her to put her nappy on and dash on over...' grin

giantkatestacks Tue 04-Aug-09 22:38:27

Really Ilovemydog - do your dcs not have chipped passports? what a pain...

kittywise Tue 04-Aug-09 22:38:37

No never for us

MoominMymbleandMy Tue 04-Aug-09 22:39:09

I kept my surname but my DCs have DH's surname, and we've never had any problems.

Occasionally people at the DD's school call me Mrs 'DH's name' but it doesn't trouble me.

Medical appointments, consent forms for treatment, school trips etc have never presented the slightest difficulty.

chablis Tue 04-Aug-09 22:53:57

I kept my maiden name for the same reasons as the OP.

Haven't encountered many problems, but I 'answer' to 'Mrs DH_Surname' and the kids have DH's name.

I find it's a positive advantage when travelling... like, for example, on the long haul flight to the US, when the airline only had 3 seats together, so put the 'family' with the same name (DH & 2 kids under 5) together, while I sadly grin had to sit two rows behind, on my own, sipping champagne... grin

OK, in reality we swapped over during the flight, but it was fun seeing DH's face at check-in....

ilovemydogandmrobama Tue 04-Aug-09 22:57:14

Good strategy Chablis grin

PortAndLemon Tue 04-Aug-09 23:04:17

Never had any problems. Medical stuff (all bar the invitation to postnatal classes hmm) arrives addressed to "Parent or Guardian of DC" and nursery and school cope fine with "Mr DH and Ms Me". I do get used to saying "This is PortAndLemon, [DC's full name]'s mother" when I call places, but that's no biggie.

Similarly to chablis, I've had DH seated with both DCs while I get a seat to myself on the row in front, though. But I didn't get any champagne...

ilovemydogandmrobama Tue 04-Aug-09 23:08:25

Yes, they have chipped (British and American) passports. Does this make a difference?

ConstantlyCooking Wed 05-Aug-09 08:00:33

My children have Dh's surname but I kept my maiden name as I did not like the symbolism of changing it. Over the years I have found that I have become Mrs DH for school purposes and dentists/doctors/opticians so they can find the records quickly.
The only problem was at passport control when they said that if I travel with the DCS on my own I would need to take birth certs to prove that i am their mother. Both DCs have chipped UK passports.

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