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Changing your surname

(131 Posts)
slaner Thu 11-Oct-12 22:32:19

I just wondered what everyone's thoughts are on changing your surname after you get married. I got married 2 years ago now but just can't come to terms with changing my name. This would be fine except we've got 2 children and they have my husbands surname so I feel a bit weird having a different name to the rest of my family. Also when I went on holiday, me and my daughter went up to passport control desk together and the man wanted to see my husband passport to prove we were parents, he said if I travelled with kids on my own I would need birth certificate to prove I'm the mum, is it just easier to change my name?!

sashh Thu 11-Oct-12 22:36:12

They asked to see your husband's passport? Really? One of my friends has a son who has his father's name and they travel regularly but never with his father (split up when ds was 2).

PhyllisDoris Thu 11-Oct-12 22:36:25

Much easier if you all have the same name. You won't be forever explaining that you're the Mum!
It's quite nice too to be Mrs xxx. Sounds more grown up!

slaner Thu 11-Oct-12 22:38:44

Yes I was surprised as well but I promise he did! I don't like the idea of being Mrs, just doesn't feel right to me, I'm quite happy with Ms but just don't know what to do about my surname, wondered what others do? :-)

Netguru Thu 11-Oct-12 22:39:11

I've remarried and taken my new busband's name as I had changed to my exhusband's name and didn't want to stay with it. That means I have a different name from my children who are all from my first marriage.

Not an issue.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Thu 11-Oct-12 22:42:58

I've heard of that happening before on MN but not in RL. I've never travelled abroad with DCs and not DH and no plans to, however last year passport control did say something along the lines of "who are you going on holiday with?" to DS (8) and I wondered if that was his roundabout way of checking that I was his parent. I have never changed my name, the DCs have their father's surname, other than the occasional bit of confusion at school, and people mistakenly calling Mrs DHsurname from time to time it has never been a problem. I don't have any personal problem with having a different surname to the DCs. However I have no desire to change my name and never use the title Mrs.

Thewidewideworld Thu 11-Oct-12 22:43:29

I never changed my name. DC are double-barrelled. I don't see the everyone having the same name thing as an issue at all. And as I was over 30 when I got married I didn't feel the need to sound 'more grown up', I was grown up already.

TheDoctrineOfSnatch Thu 11-Oct-12 22:46:19

I have kept my name. This winter me and DH are flying separately with one child each so we are each going to take a letter from the other and a copy of the birth certificate. I think the main concern is removing a child without the other parent's consent which they could need to check regardless of surname.

Don't change your name if you don't want to.

EdithWeston Thu 11-Oct-12 22:46:33

They check more these days if you have non-matching surnames; it's happened to me. Once your children are big enough to say in incredulous tones but of course that's Mummy!' the need for additional paperwork falls away.

I stayed with my name. I couldn't face the hassle of changing it, an DH never asked me to. The DCs think it would be nice if we all had the same name, but I've basic all told them 'tough, I made a different choice'. But I don't mind being calked Mrs DH socially, and you will find it happens a lot in schools because teachers know which parent belongs to which child, but doesn't necessarily have other surnames at the tip of their tongue.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Thu 11-Oct-12 22:48:06

To be honest, there are so many families with different surnames nowadays as many people don't change names and many couples don't marry that no one bats an eyelid. I find being called Mrs far more irritating than being called the wrong surname.

slaner Thu 11-Oct-12 22:48:57

Who knows- yes that's how I feel really, I think it's because I don't know anyone else that's got married and kept their name and I suppose I think, am I making mountains out of mole hills by not wanting to change my name, should it really be a big deal? but it feels like a big deal to me. Like you say it doesn't really affect day to day life. Do you think it's a feminist issue changing your name?

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Thu 11-Oct-12 22:52:13

Yes, I do, as no one expects men to change their title on marriage (I know some do change it but it is rare). Same with Mrs, men do not change their title upon marriage so why should women?

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Thu 11-Oct-12 22:52:31

I mean their name in the first sentence.

JudeFawley Thu 11-Oct-12 22:52:34

It's undoubtedly easier to change your name.

I didn't change my passport to my married name for years, and it was always a pita.

But aside from that, it was important to us to share a name when we got married and especially because we planned a family.

We just chose dh's surname because it's a really nice one and mine was horrid. Faux double-barrelled was never an option.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Thu 11-Oct-12 22:56:06

See, I don't think it is easier to change your name, in order to keep it you do precisely nothing. You may then spend 10s now and then explaining but that really is about it.

slaner Thu 11-Oct-12 22:58:47

I think I'll just go with my gut and it tells me to keep my name, I'm 33 so feel plenty grown up, I'm happy to do what's not necessarily easier but feels right to me, maybe I'll buck the trend in my friendship group and others will keep their names?! Here's to being Ms and forever having to explain I'm mum! ;-)

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeGoes Thu 11-Oct-12 23:00:53


Xmasbaby11 Thu 11-Oct-12 23:01:39

Why did you give your children your husband's name?

TeaDr1nker Thu 11-Oct-12 23:01:49

When I was married I didn't change my surname for anything except the passport. It really irked exDH. Mmmm think I knew it would not last!

Both my children with DP have double barrelled name (mine and his) not sure what I would do if we got married.

I guess it is tradition that makes women change their name, am sure someone will give a proper reason for why women did it

JustSpiro Thu 11-Oct-12 23:03:55

I changed my name by deed poll when I was 16, then took DH when we got married 9 years ago.

TBH I wish I'd kept the name I chose for myself these days but can't really change it back now.

If you're happy with your name don't change it because it' the soft option or what society expects as you won't be happy with your decision in the long run.

ivykaty44 Thu 11-Oct-12 23:05:25

my dad travelled with my dd2 quite abroad without me quite a bit and he had a copy of both mine and my dd2's birth certificate (as this shows her name and my name conneceted to his name) he has never been asked who she is in connection to him.

So I don't see that having different names will cause an issue

oopsydaisymaisy Thu 11-Oct-12 23:06:26

I had that before, though it was when DH was my DP, not DH, so I wouldn't have changed surames anyway. Strangely enough, it's always in Canada. Whenever I go there, I take a copy of the certificate, because every time I've been there without DH (well, he was DP then), and I travel a lot without him to Caada, I get stopped. Every single time. Never had that anywhere else though.

oopsydaisymaisy Thu 11-Oct-12 23:06:57

Canadanot Caada. I make a lot of mistakes! smile

slaner Thu 11-Oct-12 23:10:26

Xmas- I gave the kids his name as we weren't married when we had them and I felt it was important to him that they had his surname to show my commitment to him.

Zara1984 Thu 11-Oct-12 23:11:37

I was never close to my parents and had a rotten teaseworthy maiden name. Changed my name on every document, professional & personal when I got married. Much much much prefer my married surname.

Who cares what other people think, do what's right for you and your circumstances. People who don't know me well are surprised that I did something as "traditional" as change my name. I like having the same surname as DH smile

Same for guys too I think - there should be less stigma for men who want to change their names. A recently married man I used to work with has double-barreled his name (as has his wife) and he was quite cattily mocked behind his back angry

What I don't understand are spouses who get upset that their partner hasn't changed their name... v. weird.

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