My fiance has a very unusual, hard-to-spell-and-pronounce surname. Ever since we got engaged, people have been joking with me about what it’ll be like to take on his name, but luckily it’s not going to be a problem for me – I’m just not going to do it.
The decision has nothing at all to do with the name itself. (I find it comes in handy when telemarketers call and can’t pronounce it. "Sorry!" we say cheerfully, "No one by that name here!") It’s purely a personal thing, and there are three main reasons why I don’t want want to change:
1. I’ve had my own name for a long time now, and I’m used to it. It would seem very strange, and quite sad, to loose it now, and I think I’d feel like a little bit of my identity had gone. Silly, really, because I’m still the same person no matter what people want to call me, but that’s how I feel.
2. I’m lazy. Changing my name would involve sending my marriage certificate to dozens of companies and government departments, and honestly? I can’t be bothered.
3. I’m a writer, who has always published by work under my own name. That’s the name I’m "known" by, and while I could always keep my own name for work, and change my name for everything else, I suspect I’m too scatter-brained for that to work well. If there’s anyone who could ever forget their own name, that person is me…
So, the decision has been made – or at least, I think so. If I’m honest, there’s a part of me that really likes the idea of becoming "Mrs Hisname", and I’m still vaguely toying with that option of my name for work/his name for other things. Oh, the indecision!
What’s everyone else doing about this? Keeping your own name or taking his? I know there are quite a few people now who take a different route altogether, and either both change their names to something else, or go double-barrelled, incorporating both surnames. Seems a good idea to me (although probably not one we’d consider ourselves): I’ve always thought it seemed unfair that the woman is expected to change her name, while the man doesn’t. What do you think?