Why I’m Not Changing My Last Name After Marriage

Shutterstock/Ivan Galashchuk
Shutterstock/Ivan Galashchuk

First of all I would like to make it clear that I in no way have anything against women who have changed their last name or plan on it after being married. My mother did it, as did my grandmothers. Some women view it as a sense of unity, some admire the traditionalism of it, and some would just like to kick their horrid maiden names to the curb. I don’t view them as weak or lesser because of it. As I hope I won’t be seen as a shrew (good luck to me).

I just think that for me personally, it’s a little outdated and has never really resonated with me not only in terms of values, but for legal reasons.

When I say legal reasons, I already know what is being thought: “Oh, so she’s not changing her name because she thinks the marriage will end in divorce.” No. Although it’s statistically very possible, I wouldn’t be getting married in the first place if I had any doubt in my mind about the strength of my relationship with my fiancé.

All I mean is, simply put, it’s a lot of hassle. Not only do you have to change your name, but you have to change it on everything that bears your maiden name. Your social security card, your license, your business cards, your social media accounts, and god forbid, anything you previously had monogrammed is useless now.

As a feminist I feel that there are a lot of double standards when it comes to the sexes in modern society. Whether it’s dress codes, stereotypical gender roles, or the woman changing her last name after she marries a man.

I feel like this should be a kind of test for your partner. Even if you are open to the possibility of changing your last name, tell your partner that you’re unsure about it. Their reaction will speak volumes in the grand scheme of things. If they wouldn’t change their name for you, should you be willing to do the same?

I’m not just marrying my fiancé– he’s marrying me too. We’ve openly discussed this a few times. Part of me felt like he was just being too nice and that by keeping my maiden name, I was somehow offending him while simultaneously insulting the image of marriage that has been instilled in me from a very young age.

But the more I’ve thought about it, the more I know that remaining a Caudill is the right choice. It’s a part of me. It holds a place in my heart. It’s vital to the way I’ve begun to build my name. It’s less hassle. I’ve thought about this a lot and I won’t be changing my last name.

Becoming a Thacker doesn’t guarantee a successful marriage or intimacy. Rather, our relationship does. Isn’t that what a marriage is about — a relationship bound by something bigger than ourselves? What is in a name? TC mark

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