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AIBU?

To not understand why double barrel surnames are so wrong/bizarre to some people?

343 replies

CarsonViolet · 28/09/2022 12:07

So I recently registered the birth of my first child and gave him a double barelled surname. His name layout is Daniel Eric (My surname) (DHs surname). (None of these are actually my son's name just an example!)

In laws were visiting yesterday and were having a look at his birth certificate and were disappointed to see the surname. We did tell them that my name would be in there but apparently they just assumed it was a middle name 🙄

Cue all the 'concerns' and old fashioned twaddle about "It's just nicer and easier" and "what happens when he marries someone with a double barrel name" blah blah blah.

Am I being silly to have assumed that this crap was dead? Sure people have their own opinions on what they would personally do but to tell other people off about it?

Wanted a rant more than anything tbh but I just find it so bizarre that women wanting to share a surname with the child they carried and birthed is still contentious to some people 🤔

OP posts:
properdoughnut · 28/09/2022 12:09

Oh I know it's awful. My inlaws made such a fuss over it and send post etc to me as Mrs DH's last name. I find it insulting.

Gensola · 28/09/2022 12:10

I have a double-barrelled name without a hyphen (so basically two surnames) which seems to annoy a lot of people 😂 if I have a kid and they want to marry someone with a double-barrelled name I assume they’ll decide some sort of sensible compromise. DH has one surname but I chose to double barrel mine when we got married as I didn’t want to lose my birth name but I did want to have the same name as any kids.

Cuppasoupmonster · 28/09/2022 12:14

Meh. I mean I think it sounds a little pretentious but I also sort of admire that the mum’s name isn’t lost and that it’s routine in parts of the EU eg Spain. I think it will become more common over here.

Fuwari · 28/09/2022 12:20

I have to send out a large volume of emails most days. When I see a double barrelled name I inwardly groan! All of the single surnames can just be written Joe.Bloggs etc but the double barrelled one's sometimes have hyphens or the 2 names joined or some other configuration and then I have to spend time searching to make sure it's right. So from that perspective yabu.

sourgreenplums · 28/09/2022 12:22

My first thought was that it's good to mix up the norm of always giving husband's name. However I think that down the line, if giving a surname to a child there are only so many names you can hold onto, and therefore some will inevitably be dropped. I would not have liked to decide whether to drop my mother or father's name, so having thought about it, I prefer choosing one, either mother or father's.

bogoblin · 28/09/2022 12:25

I double-barrelled my kids' names and I love it. I did all the hard work and I like my name, I wanted it in there as well. Plus it sounds cool af. When we get married the most I'll do is add his surname to mine or just keep my own and have the kids reflect both of us. Where I grew up though double-barrelled names were always seen as posh and pretentious!

My grandma though just cannot seem to get that his surname is both our names, not just my partner's! So annoying

LosingTheWill2022 · 28/09/2022 12:30

Its none of the IL's business so they should say nothing.
But as you're asking on a forum, I think double-barrelling is pretty daft. The question of what happens next generation of names is valid. 2 parents with double barrelled names will each have to ditch one name and risk offending one parent each. You can't say it matters to you having the same surname as your dc and pretend you wouldn't bat an eyelid if they ditch it when they marry.

the issue of surnames is a tricky one and I definitely don't think its should automatically be father's name (DD has mine). But double-barrelling doesn't solve it.

LosingTheWill2022 · 28/09/2022 12:33

Or rather ditch one surname when naming their dc I should have said

moonfacebaby · 28/09/2022 12:34

My kids are double-barrelled - largely because there’s no way in hell I was going to carry a child, give birth to it and then let just the fathers name be that child’s surname. Fuck that!

I also insisted we double-barrelled when we got married.

Yes, my surname and my kids is a mouthful - but why should it default to the father of the child’s name??

Buttonjugs · 28/09/2022 12:35

It is just ridiculous. Why not just give it as a middle name? It’s pretentious, makes life harder for the child that has to write it out and sounds silly. In fifty years we’ll have teachers reading out a register with Seth Morgan-Williams-Barrett-Hodgkins and names like that if the trend continues.

Ponderingwindow · 28/09/2022 12:35

I don’t personally like them because it forces the next generation to pick which name to drop to avoid exponential name growth. The child can’t view their own surname as one unit and pass it on as a whole if both sides names will be used. So basically it solves the parent’s dilemma and gives one to the child.

I wouldn’t criticize your name choice personally though. Once a child is named, that is the child’s name and it should be respected.

ellieboolou · 28/09/2022 12:38

I find them annoying as well as hyphenated first names which are even worse IMO

tranquiltortoise · 28/09/2022 12:38

Those saying double barrelling is 'pretentious' should think about what they are saying.

Double barrelling was a huge step forward for feminism, where previously the surname would automatically default to the man/ father.

It's not pretentious, it was massive progress that it even became a thing.

ellieboolou · 28/09/2022 12:39

tranquiltortoise · 28/09/2022 12:38

Those saying double barrelling is 'pretentious' should think about what they are saying.

Double barrelling was a huge step forward for feminism, where previously the surname would automatically default to the man/ father.

It's not pretentious, it was massive progress that it even became a thing.

Can't they just use the woman's surname then?

tranquiltortoise · 28/09/2022 12:42

ellieboolou · 28/09/2022 12:39

Can't they just use the woman's surname then?

Yes they can. However 90% of women still take their husband's surname (from a 2016 survey).

People shouldn't sniff at double barrelling when actually it was a great step forwards and the alternative for most women is still just to take their husband's name.

Cuck00soup · 28/09/2022 12:44

All of the male married couples I know have double barrelled their surnames. It does seem that it's only women who are expected to give up their surname.

OnlyFoolsnMothers · 28/09/2022 12:47

my children have double barrelled- I’ve said they can dump my surname if they wish come 18- but whilst me and my husband have parental responsibility they will have both our names.

CarsonViolet · 28/09/2022 12:47

As far as all the "in 100 years people will end up with 20 surnames" comments...We need only peep outside of Britain for 5 minutes and you can see that they're are literally dozens of nations where double barelling is commonplace and lo and behold this is not case. Almost as if things work themselves out...

I just don't see what's so contentious about giving both surnames now and if my adult dc want to change it they can. It'll be their adult choice. It's certainly more feminist than looking my children in the eye and telling them that they don't have my name because "things are just so much nicer/easier when mothers are pushed aside"...

OP posts:
tranquiltortoise · 28/09/2022 12:49

sourgreenplums · 28/09/2022 12:22

My first thought was that it's good to mix up the norm of always giving husband's name. However I think that down the line, if giving a surname to a child there are only so many names you can hold onto, and therefore some will inevitably be dropped. I would not have liked to decide whether to drop my mother or father's name, so having thought about it, I prefer choosing one, either mother or father's.

I think that having this issue down the line is still better than perpetuating an entirely outdated, patriarchal tradition.

The child can decide for themselves what to do with their name on marriage and parents just need to not be petty and offended. Really not a big deal!

(Or you can just create a new name, or just use one or the other partners - but statistics are showing that people are still not using the woman's surname equally).

worriedatthistime · 28/09/2022 12:51

How its done in spain etc is easier as you can't keep double barrelling names again and again and how do you decide what is dropped
One surname is plenty whoevers it is

worriedatthistime · 28/09/2022 12:53

@CarsonViolet such as where , ny friend is half spanish so his mums name is part of a middle name and not used aa double barrelled ?

worriedatthistime · 28/09/2022 12:55

Of my friends who have double barrelled names aa children have all taken on their dh name once married ?

KiraKiraHikaru · 28/09/2022 12:55

We double barrelled when we married as neither wanted to lose our names, I already had a child with my surname. Our son together had our double barrelled surname. I don’t really see what the issue is, it’s never caused any problems other than occasionally running out of room if I have to write my name (I also have a long forename)

PerfectlyPreservedQuagaarWarrior · 28/09/2022 12:56

As far as all the "in 100 years people will end up with 20 surnames" comments...We need only peep outside of Britain for 5 minutes and you can see that they're are literally dozens of nations where double barelling is commonplace and lo and behold this is not case. Almost as if things work themselves out

Yes, honestly it's a shit for brains take. If people don't like it that's one thing, but outright ignorance is another.

SummaLuvin · 28/09/2022 12:57

My DH has a double barrel name and it is a key reason as to why I haven't gotten round to changing my name yet, it will be a pain in the butt. There have been so many times I have seen DH irritated having to spell it out, repeat it numerous times... If there is a situation where a surname needs to be given I always give mine to to save the hassle. It does't help that while neither of his surnames is weird, they aren't super common so not intuitive spellings like Jones or Black. My BIL has said to us that when he marries his partner they will merge their names into a single name rather than keep the double barrel.

As a final point I think it can put children into difficult situations later on. If Sam Double-Barrel marries Chris Two-Names and want to share a surname then they either choose one in it's entirety or each prioritise one half. I don't know how I would go about choosing between my parents names without feeling like I was making one more important.

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