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Partner has finally revealed that he's not proposed to me yet because I want to keep my surname

(149 Posts)
Pipsytwos Wed 05-Dec-12 13:29:18

So, I have taken the choice to keep my surname if I get married. Admittedly only a very small part of that is for feminist reasons, mainly it's because we have a 3 month old daughter who we gave my name. We did this because my partner has a horrible surname, one that he was mocked for at high school, I couldn't do that to our children so I convinced him that as we have a choice we should chose my average normal name. My daughter will be thankful of this esp as she has a very unique first name. The problem is that I would take his name if it was just me, but now I've named her, and I don't want a different name to her. He says he does want to marry me but feels that people will mock him and think that something of his wasn't good enough for me... Do we just not marry each other? I personally don't think marriage is about names, I think it's about unity and that unity isn't dependent on us having one name... Am I wrong?

snowtunesgirl Wed 05-Dec-12 14:15:23

It's just an excuse, has to be.

When DH and I got married, it hadn't even occured to us until about three weeks before the wedding that I might be expected to take his surname. I use my surname in a professional sense too. It had come up in conversation with others and I asked him if he wanted me to take his surname. He looked confused and said not particulary, why, do you want to take my surname? I replied, not really, I quite like mine. He said: Ok.

And that was that. grin

Mulledandmerry Wed 05-Dec-12 14:15:31 have an echo

Notmadeofrib Wed 05-Dec-12 14:16:25

Right, so he doesn't mind his child not looking like his (I don't actually think this), but he wants you firmly labelled. OK.

Not all cultures change names.

I declinded to change my name in my 30's it would have been weird.

msrisotto Wed 05-Dec-12 14:17:20

It doesn't sound like a genuine reason. If he really did want to marry you, but really wanted you to have the same name then he'd be coming up with suggestions like - both you and your daughter could change your names, he could change his name, you could double barrel etc etc. But it doesn't sound like he's doing any of this.

Pipsytwos Wed 05-Dec-12 14:23:44

I think it must be an excuse, I think back to all of the conversations we had in naming our girl and how I told him that even if he had a nice name I would've been keen to keep mine anyway. He seemed to agree, he understood that I felt that it's wholly sexist to believe that I should lose part of my identity. When I was younger I was against marriage because I felt the it was an old fashioned practice when property was exchanged. Obviously I don't feel that way anymore, and I truly believe in marriage. I think it's a choice to change your name or not. Admittedly I'd have been tempted had he had a normal name, for convenience. But as it is, I couldn't do that to my child, and I'm not changing my name when she has mine. We could put both names in because they really don't go together at all! And he wouldn't have wanted that. I feel really let down by him. I thought he had more about him. He got stick about me breastfeeding but he put up with that and always said how proud he was. He works with a lot of immature baboons! It really must be an excuse, I'd have more respect if he just said he doesn't want to marry me!

PetFox Wed 05-Dec-12 14:32:11

He got stick about you breastfeeding? shock He really does need to change his friends! Or if they are just people he works with, he needs to stop caring what they think, and especially stop putting their opinions above yours hmm

Ambivalence Wed 05-Dec-12 14:33:37

Just agree to take his name - and see how quickly he finds another excuse.

i am getting married next year, and I am not going to change my name officially, I won't object to being called Mrs X socially though, but am not changing my professional name, as at 35, I feel my reputation has been built on my name.

Catsdontcare Wed 05-Dec-12 14:34:49

God he sounds like an idiot who spends to m ugh time worrying about what other people think. I kept my surname because frankly I couldn't be bothered to change it!

Ephiny Wed 05-Dec-12 14:36:49

Why on earth would his work colleagues know or care whether you breastfed or not? confused. Why would they 'give him stick' about it? That sounds very very odd. Does he really care about what these people think?

JugglingWithPossibilities Wed 05-Dec-12 14:38:22

Sounds like he's not all bad but surrounded by idiots ?!

Glitterknickaz Wed 05-Dec-12 14:42:39

When I had the surname issue with DP (only he chose for our kids to have my name) he changed his name to mine when we married. It's never been an issue with 'under the thumb' type sentiments.

MakeItALarge Wed 05-Dec-12 14:49:33

When me and dp married the dc had my surname, registar told us the dcs names had to be changed to his, as I married their biological father. If I wanted to keep them as my maiden name I would then have to change back again confused

It does sound like hes looking for excuses, could you not all go double barreled as in mr and mrs horrible name -nice name? Then just use your last name grin

JugglingWithPossibilities Wed 05-Dec-12 15:02:52

Gosh, I'm surprised about your DC's having to take their Father's name MakeIt
- that sounds remarkably old-fashioned ?

LRDtheFeministDude Wed 05-Dec-12 15:05:06

Are you sure the registrar wasn't, well, lying, makeit? confused

Ephiny Wed 05-Dec-12 15:15:56

That sounds very odd to me too. Especially as there is no official name-changing process on marriage. You just start using your husband's name (or don't).

Was that in the UK?

orchidee Wed 05-Dec-12 15:21:32

>> When me and dp married the dc had my surname, registar told us the dcs names had to be changed to his, as I married their biological father. If I wanted to keep them as my maiden name I would then have to change back again

This sounds like bollocks. What's the business about "having to change your maiden name back again"- it doesn't automatically change to your husband's on marriage, so there's no "changing back" unless you decide to change your name to match your husband's.

Honestly, I'd report the registrar for giving out false information - unless of course they can back up that statement.

orchidee Wed 05-Dec-12 15:24:19

OP- how old is your partner? The surname business us a red herring. Your actual issue here us that he's under the thumb of the guys at work. So as long as you and the guts at work agree on how to live your lives its okay, but otherwise they'll let him know what's what, and for whatever reason, he defers to them. Sort that out and the surname issue will disappear!

orchidee Wed 05-Dec-12 15:25:28

Guts? Guys.

HullyEastergully Wed 05-Dec-12 15:29:53

Tell him to look under the bed. Perhaps his spine rolled under there.

Cantbelieveitsnotbutter Wed 05-Dec-12 15:36:22

Id rather chew my own hand off then take my oh's name if we got married... wished id given my son my surname now.

I cant see why hes happy for your daughter to have yours but wants you to have a different one, it doesnt make any sense to me??

fedupwithdeployment Wed 05-Dec-12 15:39:08

My DH has a name I don't like. Never liked it...once soon after we met he took me to a reasonably posh meal and said, "I have booked in the name of XXX". The girl snorted and then quickly apologised. He was unamused. I could sort of see her point....

So we got married...and I kept my dull but sniggerfree name. The boys have his, and haven't yet had a problem with it. Their time will come grin

It has never ever been an issue. The only person who calls me Mrs his mum, and that's fine. She calls her daughter (who has kept the snigger name) Mrs P ...

For those who are interested, 2 syllables, first is what you have on your chest and rhymes with Pit, and second is something you'd use to do your hair and rymes with bum.

I think your fiance has a few issues.

CatchingMockingbirds Wed 05-Dec-12 15:45:37

DP and I argued about who would take what name when we marry. Both names were important to us, and DP respected my views. In the end we chose to use both names but use my name as a middle name for both us and the children. wWe're planning our wedding at the moment but it was never an option not to marry based on us not deciding over the name.

Sorry OP but I just don't think he wants to marry you and is using this as an excuse.

BerylStreep Wed 05-Dec-12 16:37:25

Your DP is being an arse. Whether this is a temporary state of affairs or not, only you can know. I think impending marriages can do strange things to people's views - I am very firmly atheist, and wanted to get married in a registry office. My DH said if he couldn't get married in church, he wouldn't marry me at all hmm. We eventually got married in church, with me opting to amend my vows, but in the 9 years we have been married, he has probably only been to church about 10 times since. So he made a big deal out of something that isn't a big deal, IYKWIM - honestly, the thought of marriage does funny things to people.

However, I didn't change my name - I had built a career under my surname, and didn't really want to change it to my DH's more common name. It was no big deal, however I have found that I have organically moved towards a combination of names.

My name for: work, bank statements, some credit cards, passport, my friends and family, some utility bills, dentist, electoral roll, car insurance.

DH name for: some other bills, some other credit cards, deeds and mortgage, driving licence, GP, and school calls me Mrs DH.

Whilst I much prefer my own name, and consider that to be who I am, I don't really care what people call me - but I would definitely care if my DH tried to force the issue.

Perhaps your DP doesn't realise that changing your name is just a matter of you informing people if you want to and when you get around to it, it's not like you get a brand new legally binding birth certificate IYKWIM!

Anyhow, I would be inclined to take your Mum's advice. Don't give his silly ideas any oxygen. I'd be muttering things like, 'oh well, that's a shame, can you pass the jam?' Call his bluff, but if you make a big deal about it he will become entrenched.

BerylStreep Wed 05-Dec-12 16:38:34

Oh, I forgot to ask, what is his surname? We could do a MN poll to see if it is as bad as Fedup's DH grin

Pipsytwos Wed 05-Dec-12 17:01:18

I cant say it, it's too unique for me to get away with, but it sounds very similar to foreskin, which is what he was called at school! :0 I think I'll call his bluff. He always said he wanted to marry me but when we had the money, for one reason or another that'll never come about. Now I've taken away the cost of a wedding this issue has arisen. I think even if I'd named DD his name and was prepared to take it myself, I'd still be in this position, so I'm glad that I held firm over baba's name. Can't double barrel, our names kind of rhyme and sound awful together. I think either he doesn't want to marry me or he really is quite weak and afraid to go against the norm incase people talk... either way I'm not impressed! hmm

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