marriage and name-changing

Linnea Ista lkista at UNM.EDU
Wed Sep 3 12:39:16 EST 1997

On Wed, 3 Sep 1997, Susan Laredo wrote:

> Haven't seen any debates about name-changing in quite a while.
> I'm planning a (U.S.) wedding in the spring.  I always assumed that I 
> *wouldn't* change my last name, but now I'm giving at least a little
> consideration.  One other idea that came up was to continue to use
> my current name professionally and a married name socially.  While the
> idea of two identities has some appeal, it seems like a paperwork
> nightmare.  
> I also thought of using Firstname M. Lastname Newlastname because I
> don't really want to be hyphenated.
> Anyone care to comment on their experiences?
> Susan
I was married almost a year ago and I kept my name. I have had no real
problem, except that the company through which we have our car insurance
(it was my policy and we added my husband on) has a hard time dealing with
two different last names on their general correspondance. My local agent
is working to get that changed, or more accurately, the office manager for
my local agent is working to get that changed.

Professionally and legally there has been absolutely no problem. Socially
it is sometimes another story. A had an aunt (by marriage) simply not
"get it", until my husband very sweetly pointed out that it is simply a
social convention, and that as he fell in love me under my birth name he
didn't see why I should have to change it [the other factor is that I am
slightly older than he and we always joke that I had my name longer :-)].
And one of my newly acquired sisters in law think that this is one of the 
many reasons I am just wierd.I have also been asked how people are
supposed to know that I am now married. My response "the same way they
know Scott is!" I have also been questioned as to my commitment to the
marriage as I will not "give in" on this particular matter. In our main
social group, however it is common for the woman to have kept her name.

One big benefit is that I know when a telemarketer is calling! If they
say "Good Evening, Mrs. Briggs" I know that it is someone that I probably
don't want to talk to. It is also kind of fun to inform them that Mrs.
Briggs doesn't live there, especially if they got the name from a list of
newly married people!

I would say that this decision is highly personal and what works for me
may not work for other people. Do what you think is right!

And congratulations!

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