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City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP
City & State or ZIP Tonight, this weekend, May 5th...
City & State or ZIP

The Name Game

You take the ring, you take the name. This is the one sentence response I got when I asked an ex-boyfriend how he felt about me not changing my name if we married. I am a Daddy’s girl and he has no sons, so I used to believe that I owed it to Pops to keep the name. The Ex was not warming up to that idea, at all!

I received an email from a reader said that she has noticed the name game among her married friends lately: “Either their names have pretty much stayed the same or the hypenation has been in full-effect!”  She said that it was “surprising to her because so many ladies grew up doodling (and still sneak-a-doodle) the last name of our beloved crush after our first, just to see how it looks.”

She wrote, “I somehow doubt men give this much thought in their formative years, if at all.  Maybe it’s the mindset of the dreaded “Independent Woman” or those who have just gotten so used to solely identifying themselves by maiden name, they can’t go all in with totally disconnecting from it.  How did the married women who chose to keep or hyphenate their maiden names broach the topic?

How did the married men whose mates favored this option react?  Do single, marriage minded men perceive women who would want to do so in a negative way? Do single, marriage minded women perceive guys as insecure if they express discomfort with the idea?

For those married folks who went the traditional route, what influenced your decision?  And for those who are dating with kids, would you feel obligated to change your children’s last names to your husband’s if you should marry?”

Thanks to the reader for asking these great questions! What do you guys think? Are we still playing the name game in 2009?

460 comments Add your comment

English Girl

May 7th, 2009
1:57 pm

@MELO hubby came to the marraige with his own assets too…believe that! But when you do have multiple assets and are also have dual citizen of another country where some of those assets are, changing your name and updating paperwork, passports, ect it just becomes a headache. I guess hubby understood because he also came to the table with ‘assets’ he also has dual citizenship and us being married says it all anyway. Name change or not I’m his wife no matter what my last name is.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
1:57 pm

I still say look at Monica Kaufman Pearson. She lost nothing in taking on her husband’s name. She is still the most well-known black female news personality out there.

Jay

May 7th, 2009
1:59 pm

MO. It was just a thought. Being you got your maiden back. With your daughter having your maiden name. Sometimes people get married for the wrong reason. As a safety net. Thats a way to keep your names similiar. Thats all.

SexyCool

May 7th, 2009
1:59 pm

ATL – Thanks for the referral.

abc

May 7th, 2009
1:59 pm

I’d say that if you don’t want his name (or want to keep your father’s name more), and if you don’t want to feel as if you belong to him, then a husband isn’t what you want. A husband is more than a boyfriend, equal partner, and so on. A husband asks and deserves more, because a from a husband you get more.

If he’s not husband material, don’t marry him. If you don’t want to be a true wife, don’t expect to have a true husband. The best you’ll get is a boyfriend.

-W8

May 7th, 2009
2:01 pm

And just to stir the pot a bit. When I got divorced back in 2002 part of my decree was to have her change her name back to her maiden name.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:01 pm

So as some would have it today two people get married and should opt not to share names, bank accounts, bills, personal living space, hobbies, interests, friends…

If you put together a lot that is read here that is pretty much what you get.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:03 pm

abc man I really like you.

Atlborn

May 7th, 2009
2:03 pm

SexyCool – No problem. Glad you can help her out.

Cemeeli

May 7th, 2009
2:05 pm

Ms. Moca with the initials A.S.S. Between you and Tazzee and the names & initials have me laughing. While you both have nice names. Not like Cemeeli’s government name.

mqew Has a cute name, too.

Truth The Stylist?!!!? From a dude that wears a turban.

Leggs

May 7th, 2009
2:06 pm

@W8, I too had my maiden named restored in my divorce decree. I found it interesting that a lot of people don’t do this and then have to go back to court.

-W8

May 7th, 2009
2:08 pm

@abc I think you are correct with your last statement…

@mytwocents..as men it’s out duty to make her 1 Peter comfortable..lol

abc

May 7th, 2009
2:09 pm

I think I’ve mentioned your impeccable taste before, Raqi!

You usually make sense to me, too.

CK9

May 7th, 2009
2:11 pm

I just married and am keeping my name for now until my husband figures out what exactly he wants his last name to be. We have a very special circumstance… his parents divorced and he ended up with his mom’s last name as it happened. Now we’re talking about changing it to his father’s name (as I believe it should be) but he’s resisting because of the nature of their relationship. (It was bad.) So… right now, we are in limbo. I told my husband I would not be changing my last name until he changes his. No point in both of us having the wrong last name, that’s how I see it!

-W8

May 7th, 2009
2:11 pm

@Leggs, you aren’t my ex wife are you..lol. Seriously changing the last name back after divorce should be common practice.

hryder

May 7th, 2009
2:13 pm

In our society the normal process is the use of the males surname for the newly formed family. In some societies it is the females surname. In other societies no one changes and the resultant offsprings’ surnames vary as to how established. We, my wife and I, prefer the males surname and we do not personally know anyone named differently. Our grandsons carry as their middle name our daughter-in-laws maternal grandparents(the oldest)and the surname of her parents(the youngest). In our minds to employ another surname, other than the males, in our society insults a way of life, changing definitions that have existed for centuries. Not unlike defining gay as a homosexual person rather than meaning being a happy person. Along this line of thought, Marriage is between one male and one female in our society by definition. Any other arraignment should be named differently but could legally be permitted all ramifications of a marriage. The basic thing being that marriage came about as a legal and moral method of perpetuating the species naturally. Male-male or female-female couples require at least one person of the opposite sex outside the relationship to be involved for the species to be perpetuated. This is some type of triangle and does not meet the definitiion of a marriage, it is tacitly understood that heterosexual modifies marriage.

LIONESS- Trees are Dangerous!

May 7th, 2009
2:13 pm

MIA needs to STAY off of the homepage of the ajc..

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:16 pm

your impeccable taste before LMBO. Pretty good there.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:17 pm

CK9 how old is your husband that he is dealing with such an issue?

mytw♥cents

May 7th, 2009
2:19 pm

MOCA Mamita, mira lo: I really like the idea of letting you know you’re an A.S.S. and having the marriage documents to prove it! Hmmm Maybe you should make nice and revisit that, just for ya buddy, tatas. Shoot, I’d be willing to come outta retirement & pay the last $18.75 to get my gold lame bridesmaid gown off layaway for that ceremony. From the sounds of it, y’all stubborn behinds might get to fussin right up at the altar, have a fit of passion n try to consummate the marriage fo’ the preacher finish his spiel. Come back still angry n disheveled just to finish the vows. Yeah, that kinda entertainment will be worth the trip to the Key West location I’ve already selected.

I know, I know, I know how much you hate me right now chick ;) Lawd where’s the rollie round the floor emotie when I need him?!?!

Jamoca

May 7th, 2009
2:19 pm

As for my daughters….I really see no real reason than for (some) folks being too busy worrying about “how it looks” to other people, who have absolutely nothing, contribute nothing to your family’s livelihood and/or well being. I’m not one to prove anything to folks who simply do not matter to me.

Now, I’d actually consider it, if “my husband” were to ask if he could adopt them…especially being that “the other half” has been out of the picture for quite sometime. But I’d also ask my daughters how they’d feel about their names being changed as well…just to get their perspective(s) on how comfortable they’d feel in general. Because different last names, subconsciously puts somewhat of a divide…may not be physically, but emotionally, mentally even..

Bottomline, all that really concerns me, is that I’m placing their well beings in the hands of the man that I love, trust, respect and honor…who’s shown, just as much as he’s told “us” of his devotion to being a great leader, visionary and provider …always on the frontlines to protect and claim what is rightfully his, whether by blood or by love.

…and this goes vice versa…I remember when this same man and I had this convo and he reversed….gotta respect a man looking out for his seed by getting down to some real heavy, hard-hitting questions. And I simply replied: “your son does not have to be biologically mine, in order for him to be “mine”. I wouldn’t treat another person’s child(ren) no more or less than I treat, care and/or love my own. Same last name or not….that child(ren) and I would be bound by more than just A NAME.

Leggs

May 7th, 2009
2:19 pm

Common place, you would think! My husband’s last name only identifies me as his wife. My maiden last name identifies my familial roots. So, being divorced why would I keep his name? Hell, I didn’t want to keep him certainly don’t want to keep his name. His name lives on with his daughter whose familial roots starts with the both of us!

AmazonRed™

May 7th, 2009
2:19 pm

part of my decree was to have her change her name back to her maiden name.

That would hurt. Especially if I had kids. But hey, our family is breaking up anyway, so I’d just have to get over that.

Tazzee - all moved in (sort of)

May 7th, 2009
2:20 pm

sleepy – I need some caffeine!

AmazonRed™

May 7th, 2009
2:22 pm

Hell, I didn’t want to keep him certainly don’t want to keep his name

:lol: :lol: :lol:

Tell us how you really feel, Leggs.

MELO

May 7th, 2009
2:22 pm

English Girl got u, so u english and america and hes american and what??
Wish u the best with hubby.
Read abc’s 1.59 tho.Very intstructive.Thats the marriage mindset iam on.
Sometimes females will do things in a union that they may regret later.Tho a name is symbolic,it means a whole lot,esp to the man.
Just as well u have money.U can always bounce and be on ur 2 feet if it dont work out.
Good luck!!

mytw♥cents

May 7th, 2009
2:23 pm

LIONESS I love the new voices and am always tryna lure lurkers out. Well, I try to delegate that to Main Lurker but she shuns my requests more often than not to keep the crazy status quo as unstable as it already is… How did you find the blog? I think I stumbled thru the site and came across it when I was bored outta my mind. Tempin ain’t easy, but it sure was fun!

Cemeeli

May 7th, 2009
2:23 pm

My first name i love, my lastname is from foreign.

A few names that I enjoy writing: Moriah, Abigail, Deasia, Evan, Kaveri, Lyric, Serenity, Omar, Jacob, Treasure, Stacey, Samolia, Chloe, Shamola, Dexter, Enon….

All these names are relative to me in some way or the other.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:24 pm

Now, I’d actually consider it… Jamoca I agree.

If the paternal father is not even active in the child’s life physically and/or financially why not let it be. As I see it it could actually be beneficial to the child to be included in the inheritance. What does the child have to lose? The adjoining name of a deadbeat is the only thing I can think of.

kimmie

May 7th, 2009
2:25 pm

MyTwo/Mo – I am so with you on the long hair thing. I guess because I had very long hair growing up & my mother would not allow me to cut it until like jr year of high school, and only in a shoulder-length bob. As soon as I went away to college I got it cut short the old Halle style. It was a way to exert my independence! It’s gone up & down since then and I had it very long again until about a year ago. I have a short bob again. I get SO BORED with long hair! There is not jack I could do except a ponytail! I get so sick of folks coming up whining to me about “why did you cut that long pretty haaaiirrr???”! It will grow back and if it doesn’t, oh well! Getting me some highlights this summer too!! I like to look sassy and stylish! I’ve dated dudes in the past that took it as a personal afront to THEM that I cut MY hair! Glad my SO is not hung up on hair – he said he liked my sassy cut! Good, cause Imma do what I want anyway!

On topic- Everyone should do what works for them. One guy sees it as a slap in the face if wifey does not want his name, while the other guy does not care. Everyone is not traditional and should not be looked down on if they don’t want to follow tradition! You should know each other well by the time you get engaged, so it should not be a surprise about the whole name thing. Plus, changing ones name and being all traditional still won’t guarantee your marriage is going to work! Personally, I’d prefer it if a dude approached me like “I’d really consider it an honor if you would take my family name”, versus “My name or the highway”!

AmazonRed™

May 7th, 2009
2:30 pm

It will take me a minimum of 80,000 SkyMiles to get to Dubai…

-W8

May 7th, 2009
2:31 pm

@Red
It really wasnt an issue. My ex went back to her maiden name and my daughter still has my name, until she grows up and gets married.

Atltwen

May 7th, 2009
2:31 pm

mytw♥cents – ALTWEN Uhm, why did your brother go AWOL for two years, was your family fighting harder against her than he was about it and didn’t it all just confuse the kids?

I know, I know, the questioned was asked like 5 hours ago but I’m still going to answer it.

Basically, he stopped paying child support. He was paying $1200 a month for my twin nieces; but that amount was based on a lot of overtime. Once it was permanently cut, he couldn’t afford to pay it anymore.

Always afraid to take charge and be proactive, he just let it build up to the point where the police put a warrant out for his arrest and that is when he went into hiding.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:38 pm

Tazzee go for a short brisk walk, that may help.

Cougar Hunter ( My, My, My)

May 7th, 2009
2:41 pm

Wow, I find it quite interesting that a few ladies are more concerned about keeping the tradition of their Father’s name alive then taking their husband’s last name. Let’s see did your mother take your father’s last name?

How would you ladies feel if you husband purchase you a crackerjack ring for the engagement/wedding band? Since buying an expensive ring has become part of the tradition…. Would that be o.k.?

Jusk asking! :wink:

Randyt (aka Been there, Done that, Got a Closet FULL of t-shirts)

May 7th, 2009
2:42 pm

I might have some heartburn if a lady I wanted to marry wanted to keep her ex-husband’s last name. There might be a hidden message there! It is probably academic though, I do not think marriage is in the cards anyway. I have successfully avoided it for a decade, so I might want to wait a few more decades…no use to rush into anything without thinking it through for 15 or 20 years of so ;-) .

Poppa Grande

May 7th, 2009
2:42 pm

Raqi

I still say look at Monica Kaufman Pearson.

The thing that seems interesting with her IMO is this. She’s been married a couple of times before this time, but this is the first time that she changed the on-air name. In the past, her personal legal docs such as checks. She wouldn’t change the on-air personality.

Her daughter, Claire, and my sister were AAU basketball teammates back in the day. (Hence seeing a personal check from her) So, my parents are pretty good friends with her.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:47 pm

Cougar as it seem these days the marriage and the husband has to take a back seat to everything else.

You hear so much of “it was here before he was”, “I was doing xyz before he came along”, “i knew john doe before I knew him”, and so on.

How is it people expect the S/O to vow to be, but then play second fiddle to everything else pre-existing in their lives? I don’t get it.

Atltwen

May 7th, 2009
2:49 pm

Leggs – @Atltwen ~ first and foremost you have to walk w/confidence…Let go of the “choir boy” image you have of yourself and be a little more assertive.

I have self-confidence, but no confidence the I want or should to talk to you because I like the way you look from a distance. It’s such a shallow avenue of introducing and meeting a female because as a person and personality, she could be very unattractive. And that is way more important than her looks.

That is why I prefer to get some background a female before I approach so I will know what I’m getting myself into. However, that hasn’t been working so well because 90% of the female who want to talk to me I’m not interested in. And ones I want to talk, aren’t likely to be walking up to me – their too physically attractive for that.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:49 pm

Poppa maybe this one is truly special. Worth being named for. I thought she only had one prior marriage. I hadn’t heard of any others.

i'm swiss

May 7th, 2009
2:49 pm

It wouldn’t be a deal-breaker for me if Swiss Miss didn’t want to take my name, but I’m happy that she does. (Love those traditional island girls) :-) To me, it’s a nice gesture of respect & commitment.

I’m sure she’ll keep her current name as a middle name or something, just because it has that nice French ring to it (well, when pronounced properly, which very few Americans ever do). Then again, my name is not bad, either — very English.

Off topic: To demonstrate what a good husband I am (or will be), it’s time to start getting dinner ready. Of course, I make it more fun for myself by drinking while I cook…

English Girl

May 7th, 2009
2:50 pm

What’s in a name? As some of you have stated if there is some family or spiritual significance I totally understand. If you are into the tradition and ‘taking on’ the mans name so be it! But this is the 21st century folks, no one should be looked down upon or judged because they decided to give up or keep a maiden name. A successful marraige is the true accomplishment. Just because I didn’t take my husbands name doesn’t make him any less than my husband…..@abc and MELO he is definately NOT my boyfriend just cause I didn’t take his name.

Mary

May 7th, 2009
2:50 pm

Cougar Hunter: I wouldn’t mind. The ring is just a piece of jewelry. I’d be mortified if he spent a small fortune on it. What matters is that we’d be spending our lives together.

Of course, I feel the same about weddings: it’s just a party. No need to spend all your money on it.

-W8

May 7th, 2009
2:51 pm

@Poppa maybe she finally me the right one

@Raqi..it’s amazing how that stuff takes second place, but yet they want to be in first all of the time?

Poppa Grande

May 7th, 2009
2:52 pm

Raqi

How is it people expect the S/O to vow to be, but then play second fiddle to everything else pre-existing in their lives? I don’t get it.

The answer is the following……Many of those people really want a wedding and not a marriage, and are even lying to themselves in order to get it.

Poppa Grande

May 7th, 2009
2:55 pm

W8

@Poppa maybe she finally me the right one

Rumor has it that since he is a police officer, he kinda laid the ground rules if that things was gonna get done. She agreed.

He was the assistant police chief of DeKalb County. He may still be there. I just don’t know with all of the changes that are going on in the DeKalb Police Dept.

Raqi

May 7th, 2009
2:56 pm

W8 You are correct. I don’t know of too many women who do not want to be first in their husband’s life. But you find so many of those same women not making him first in her’s.

Sorta like working for a company and wanting to be considered first for a upgraded position, however you don’t devote any extra time or effort into the job you already have. Sorta like that.

kimmie

May 7th, 2009
2:57 pm

English Girl – I totally agree. People need to quit being so judgemental. Do you. Quit looking down your nose cause somebody else does not want to do you!

Just because something is a “tradition” does not mean it is law and must be followed. Yes, it is a new day and we are all free. Free to decide which “traditions” to follow and which to change and create new “traditions”. We can pick and choose traditions just like we can pick & choose mates. Find one who thinks the way you do, someone that shares your philosophy on certain traditions!

MELO

May 7th, 2009
2:58 pm

but this is the first time that she changed the on-air name. In the past, her personal legal docs such as checks. She wouldn’t change the on-air personality

she has learnt her lesson…no wondeer she was quick to change the name,this time around(to a police office at that)!,she must be thankful for the lessons in those other prior marriages. :lol:

Randyt (aka Been there, Done that, Got a Closet FULL of t-shirts)

May 7th, 2009
2:58 pm

This is going to probably Pi$$ Off some people here, but for a marriage/relationship etc. to work for long, there has to be at least some “mutual submission”. If one party thinks that he/she has to do all of the giving, then sooner or later the resentment starts building deep down. With each new insult/injury another row of bricks is added onto that wall between them until one day the parties cannot really remember why they were in the relationship. Sooner or later it will blow up and the other person, who has gotten used to always having his/her way is trying to quell a rebellion from someone they thoguth they knew.

It is what it is. People who always enforce the “my way or the highway” usually get to spend some quality time just with their pride sooner or later.