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Active Questions

When marrying should u keep your maiden name for proffesional reasons?
Married Life / 3:27 PM - Sunday March 07, 2010

when marrying should u keep your maiden name for proffesional reasons?

my g.f. and i talked about marriage,but she insists she wont change her last name because of her job. im not sure i can handle this right now. any suggestions? how to handle this?

- Asked by campy1, A Mr. Nice Guy, Male, 56-65, Retail

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She is marrying you, not being adopted by you. If you cannot handle that "right now", then you are not ready to get married "right now".

- Response by theprofessor, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 46-55, San Francisco

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Many women are no longer interested in changing their name. I feel it's such a minor thing it's not worth fighting over. You should just suck it up.

- Response by rockerking, A Creative, Male, 26-28, Ottawa, Artist / Musician / Writer

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sorry, but do you have an unflattering last name that she might not like? I would hyphenate my name and then send an announcement to All my business contacts that I just got married and put my new name out there and get even more attention for my business!

- Response by kmf1, A Life of the Party, Female, 46-55, Minneapolis, Who Cares?

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I would always change it, because for me it would be a special part of being married. She could always hyphenate it so she uses both names. If I were a man, it would bother me if she did not take my name. Just my opinion.

- Response by dreamdancer, A Creative, Female, 36-45, Houston, Other Profession

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I you have worked hard to establish a name for yourself so to

speak professionally you would want to keep it because

that is how you are known and you private life is separate from

your professional . I have several friends that hyphenated their

names be cause a few were artist that became know by there

maiden name so if they are looking for you ,you want them to be

able to find you.

- Response by morningdust, A Creative, Female, 56-65, Self-Employed

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Pick your battles with her or you will be constantly at odds. So what, she wants to keep her name, don't you want to keep yours?

- Response by wandatrick91, An Alternative Girl, Female, Who Cares?

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and why should she take on your last name??? just because it has been done for thousands of years?! that doesn't make it correct. maybe you want to take on her last name, or merge your names together. why should she change her identity bc she got married. that's a warning sign for her!!! buddy, you're stuck in time. good luck

- Response by A Thinker, Female, 26-28, New York, Who Cares?

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You Americans are really a little slow on the uptake (think the metric system for example). In Quebec a woman has no choice but to keep her legal maiden name for her entire life. She can't even legally have it changed without a compelling reason. She can refer to herself by any name she wants but her drivers license, medicare card, social insurance name remains the one she was born with for life.....

Stop making this a big deal and respect the fact that you've found a woman with a strong sense of personal identity to marry.

- Response by selectivegirlsdna, An Alternative Girl, Female, 56-65, Montreal, Managerial

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One of the best parts of getting married is changing my name, soemthing that I look forward to. As far as she goes, there's no way to change her mind. You should explain to her how you feel and how much it means to you. Maybe she could meet you halve way and get it hefenated.

- Response by bts4life20, A Trendsetter, Female, 26-28, Self-Employed

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I think marriage has come a long way from how "traditional" values were/still are viewed. It likely depends what her job occupation is. If your girlfriend doesn't want to change her last name because of entitlement she's worked hard to receive (and doesn't want to jeopardize losing) or because of the ease of recognition, she could always hyphenate it. For the longest time I thought if I were to ever get married, I'd change my last name but I want to enter the medical profession so I'd likely too, hyphenate my name.

Good luck and best wishes!

- Response by kierst2please, An Alternative Girl, Female, 22-25, Student

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Depends on the Job.

I know some people choose to keep their maiden name for professional reasons, but legally change their name to their spouses.

I.E. Sandra Bullock is going to keep her name the same because she is already established herself using that name. If She changed it to Sandra James, no one would recognize it.

Also, sometimes people don't want employees, employers, customers, clents etc. tracking them down outside of work, so they keep their maiden name for work, but legally change to their spouses. Doctors, Police, Teachers sometimes do that.

- Response by A Creative, Male, 29-35

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i would like to keep my name when i marry.i honestly dont understand why it would become a problem in a long as the 2 of you love each other whats the issue.but if you arent happy with the decision of your mate keeping their maiden name then the both of you should come to a compromise meet each other in the middle.

- Response by unbreakablesilence, A Married Girl, Female, 29-35, Student

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Personally, I would never change my name, because of proffesion or any other reason. I am fond of my heritage and last name and would hope that my fiancee would undrstand and accept that.

- Response by pensgurl5, A Career Woman, Female, 22-25, Edmonton, Student

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Here is a compromise. Offer this to her: You'll be okay with her NOT changing her name, if she signs a pre-nup agreeing to waive all writes to any and all alimony and pre-emptively agree that in a divorce YOU (not her) would retain custody of any children created during the marriage.

If she doesn't want to be a part of your family then she does not deserve the perks that might come from being a part of your family.

- Response by An Intellectual Guy, Male, 36-45, Teaching

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BTW, just in case you haven't figured it out. A woman who won't change her name isn't wife material. In and of itself its not the end of the world, but Its a symptom of a problem that will prevent her from having a successful marriage.

- Response by An Intellectual Guy, Male, 36-45, Teaching

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i feel like if your going to get married to you should take your husbans last name especally if your going to have kids i hate hyphenated names to confusing to the kids

- Response by misdestar, A Creative, Female, 36-45, Self-Employed

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I changed my name legally when I got married but wanted to use my maiden name at work for professional reasons. Unfortunately, my employer eventually forced me to use my married name for email, which defeated the purpose of trying to keep my maiden name. I still, 4 years later, have people who call and ask for me by my maiden name. It takes a long time to build up contacts, I can understand why she wants to keep it.

- Response by mskitty12345, A Creative, Female, 36-45, Indianapolis, Science / Engineering

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What they do now as a rule, is use their own name, hyphenate and write their marriage last name as well. Mr. Nice Guy, it's fact of life now and you'll just have to become accustomed to it.

- Response by pushkins, A Thinker, Female, 66 or older, Miami, Who Cares?

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This happens a lot nowadays, no biggie. Thank Corporate America!

- Response by fehkarfight, A Couch Potato, Male, 56-65, Who Cares?

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Lets turn this around on the other foot. Lets say it was that men always took the female name (they do in some cultures). So lets say that for hundreds of years lineage was determined by females and you had to declare yourself part of the female line.
Lets than say that this was done because that's how riches were passed down...the women held the wealth and men were considered property and part of the property state...the kids were considered hers.
Now would you want to continue this way of being or would you at some point rebel against it and determine that you were an individual and NO ONES PROPERTY WITHIN A PROPERTY STATE?
I'm going to bet some heavy duty money here that you would want your own name...not your mother's, not your wife' of your own.
That's essentially where she is going with this. She has created an that she that she has a right to maintain regardless of what property state she enters. No other financial arrangement demands we change our names. Not business partnerships...not childbearing....not one other contract demands we alter our identity.
And so if you can't handle it than I say you are a little less intelligent and empowering than she gives you credit for.

- Response by joybird, A Creative, Female, Who Cares?, Therapist

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It doesn't matter what her name is; my ex didn't take my last name, and my s/o has mentioned that she will hyphenate. I couldn't care less either way. To marry my s/o, I would take HER last name if she wanted. last name is egregious anyway; I couldn't blame her for not taking it, and it would be a relief for me to take hers and lose it.

- Response by stillagoodguy1, An Intellectual Guy, Male, 56-65, Political / Government

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Its a pretty normal thing to do nowdays.

I don't like it either, and would prefer to take the name of my husband.

Still...for job purposes, identity, and children, women keep old names.

Upon divorce, I kept my married name, because of minor children...its been 10 years now.

I'm kinda looking forward to a change at some point. :)

- Response by mamom04, A Sweet Sarah, Female, 56-65, Phoenix

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I'm sorry, man, but that is something you're going to have to deal with. It is increasingly common for a woman to keep her name, or hyphenate, when she marries.
If I were to ever marry, I would keep my birth name, because it reminds me of my father and grandfather, who were both very kind and wonderful men.

- Response by myround3, A Hippie Chick, Female, 29-35, Who Cares?

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well i dont blame her when my es and i talked about marriage and i said i would keep my own and when he asked why i told him that i already have a last name and i like it so why would i change it? then he said somthing about it showing respect, so then i told him that if it was really a sign of respect then why wasnt he offering to take up my last name? just dont make a big deal out of it

- Response by mindgames, A Thinker, Female, 26-28, Student

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What's to "handle"? Her name is HER name. I wouldn't want to change mine either, especially if I had a good career reputation, and was known already by the name I had.

It's not a big deal, and it certainly doesn't imply any disrespect towards you.

- Response by justpassingthru, A Thinker, Female, 56-65, Financial / Banking

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That's a cop out!

She should keep her last name and add yours on with a hyphen in the middle.

- Response by myndseye711, A Cool Mom, Female, 29-35, Managerial

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It is not the end of the world but if it is that important..
ask her if she would not mind hyphenating it.
Also, she can go by Mrs Smith for some things but then not change it legally or
at work things.. Can compromise.

- Response by nbtt, A Sportif, Female, 36-45, Body Work

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Look, if your last name clashes with her first name, like Her name is Nora and you are Arthur Titov, then sure, that's a good reason NOT to take your name.

If she is Eileen Wanker and your are Harry Wright, then she becomes Eileen Wright, but that's a FAR better name then you taking her name and becoming Harry Wanker! :)

I could go on all day, like you are Tom Bottoms and She is Dusty Springfield... etc etc...

Suck it up. Do you love her or not?

- Response by bastoid, A Guy Critical, Male, 46-55, Sydney, Who Cares?

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I've spent over nine years getting four degrees, three above the BA level. All of my degrees will have MY name on them.

I am not going to change my name to a name that is not on my degrees. I do not blame any woman who has similar reasons for not changing her name. A hyphenated name is still a name change.

If you care about your s/o, you will respect the fact that her life before you is still important to her and not press the issue.

- Response by electragold21, A Thinker, Female, 29-35, New York, Teaching

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It depends on the career, years in it and how important the name is in it. A lot of women have built a professional reputation based on name recognition, thus to change the name means looking like the new kid on the block, even if she has put in years of proving herself.

I personally wanted to keep my maiden name professionally, then legally keep the maiden as a middle name and my husbands as a last. Unfortunately, I couldn't because I'm living in Italy and women here can't legally take the husband's last name. Regardless, in private life I go by my husband's last name, and often sign it after mine.

Professionally though, I built a name for myself before we were married. I had 4 really good publications in high profile journals under my maiden name, plus all of my degrees. If I changed it, those journal articles I worked so hard-years-to publish, wouldn't be recognized as mine. My boss, who knew the president and was part of every prestigious medical/scientific association, met the pope personally and was often on the news, would present my maiden name at the end of his talks for thanks, and probably even still listed it after I left. My God, I met the keynote speaker in Greece at a conference last year, and she remembered my name from my old boss! It would have been silly to have given that up.

If I had been 23 when I got married, I would have changed it completely, but when you marry a woman who has established herself in a career based on reputation, things change.

My sister was in politics, thus she really had to keep her maiden name when she married at 30, otherwise no one would know who she was when they tried to vote for her!

I wouldn't make such a big deal of it. Talk to her about why it bothers you. If it makes you feel like you two are separate, ask if she would take your name in her private life (signing into hotels, with friends etc), but still keep hers professionally.

- Response by milla, A Thinker, Female, 36-45

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Stay single.

It's her name. Not yours. Her decision. Not yours.

- Response by trawna, A Career Woman, Female, 46-55, Toronto, Consulting

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She could always hyphenate her name.

- Response by experience101, A Thinker, Female, 56-65, Who Cares?

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