Married name change has always been big news to MissNowMrs.com (for obvious reasons), but suddenly the whole worlds seems to be interested in this topic. From the Facebook survey indicating 65% of women change their names to Hollywood starlets contemplating taking their husbands’ last names, there is more and more buzz around name change.
Talking to feminists about name change after marriage can causing some serious soap box sessions about equality and spousal ownership. Personally, I am all for woman power and independence, but I don’t think changing your name indicates that you are subordinate to your spouse. I believe that the up-swing in married name change indicates that more and more women feel completely equal in their marriage and don’t need to keep their names to keep their identity.
Married name change isn’t for everyone, so if you don’t want to change your name…don’t! If you are curious about the idea of changing your name, there are many options available to brides these days. You can take your spouse’s last name, take your last name and his/her last name without a hypen, take your last name and his/her last name with a hyphen, or take your maiden name as a new or second middle name.*
My most important suggestion is to talk to your spouse about your name change decision. They may feel very strongly about you taking their name in some form, or they could be open to taking your last name! Whatever married name change decision you come to, make it together. A happy marriage is built on communication and compromise!
*Please note that brides living in PA, WA, NJ, and OH do not have the option to take their maiden names as middle names based on state legislature. NY brides must file their forms in a specific order to take a maiden name as a middle name and CA brides must list their maiden name as a middle name on their marriage license to be able to change their names in that manner.