Huffpost Weddings

Last Name Change: 8 Women Reveal Why They Kept Their Surnames After Marriage

Posted: Updated:
INDEPENDENT WOMAN
Getty

A May 2013 survey conducted by Facebook in partnership with the Daily Beast found that as many as 65 percent of married women in their 20s and 30s had decided to take their husband's name after marriage.

The numbers were even higher for women in their their 40s, 50s and 60s, with 68 percent, 75 percent and 80 percent of women in those age brackets taking their husbands' names, respectively.

While there are many married woman going the name-changing route, there are still many other women who have decided to buck tradition by keeping their own last names post-wedding. On Monday, we asked our female readers to tell us why they decided to say "I don't" to changing their last names after saying "I do". Scroll down to learn about their reasons.

"Throughout our engagement, I would look in the mirror and call myself by my 'new name.' I would also pretend to answer the phone at work introducing myself with my new name. I didn't know that person, but I did know myself with my given name very well. Now my husband and our two beautiful daughters -- who have his last name -- love me with my given name." - Renee Schneider, 43, of Holmdel, N.J.

"I kept my maiden name because I like how it sounds. It takes parents a long time to choose a name for their child (my parents named me Jessica Woods and later had it legally changed to Aubrey Woods). After all that, how could I change to my husband's last name?" - Aubrey Woods, 34, of Milwaukee

"I’ve been married five happy years and have kept my maiden name. It was my decision after having the same name for 30 years; I didn’t want to give it up. We did compromise and decided if we had children, I would change my name. Since that hasn’t happened, I continue to keep my name proudly. We receive cards from family who haven’t really accepted or don't understand the decision, but it doesn’t bother me to be called Mrs. Long. It was never about him, but rather about my love for who I was before and after being married. I love being 'Mrs. Long,' but I don’t think a name change would make me feel any more married." - Angel Dunlap, 35, of Atlanta

"When I got married, I kept my name for several reasons: 1) I had just received my master's degree with my name, and thought it silly to change my name after achieving that milestone; 2) Whenever you try to look up friends from high school, you can never locate the women because of the name change. It's an identity eraser, and I didn't want to erase who I was; 3) I felt it was an antiquated custom that I didn't need to follow. My husband was fine with it, so why bother? You aren't fusing yourself with another person, you are joining him in equality. I don't know why women feel the need to change their last names, to be honest." - Julien Fielding, 43, of Omaha, Neb.

"When I was a little girl, I remember very clearly my father saying, 'Don't ever change your name...it's just too good.' He was a very Italian man with strong roots and our last name is classic in so many ways. His advice has stayed with me even with his passing and although I am getting married in eight months to a man with an equally awesome last name, he understands that my name is important to me and has helped define a lot of who I am. If we have children, they will hyphenate and their last name will be 18 letters long and they will be taught the pride behind each." - Samantha Contarino, 31, of Philadelphia

"There were two reasons -- one personal, one professional -- why I kept my birth last name. My parents had two daughters, and my dad's only sibling -- a brother -- also had a girl. I wanted to keep my birth name as a way to show respect to my dad and his side of the family. Also, I was a successful pharmaceutical salesperson and had worked really hard to establish respect and credibility. I was not willing to start over with a new last name. And an added bonus: My spouse said he could not imagine marrying someone who would change their last name!" - Tracy McCreery, 46, of St. Louis

"I know (and my husband knows) that he is my family, regardless of whether or not I took his name. Keeping my surname was about maintaining my own perceptions of self identity associated with my name. My last name is 15 letters long; it's unique, interesting and has a story behind it. For my entire life, it's been a conversation starter. Everyone from my students to cashiers at the grocery store ask, 'Wow, that's long. How do you say it? Where is it from?' My last name gives me a connection to the world that I didn't want to lose." - Catrina Tangchittsumran, 31, of Alexandria, Va.

"I've been a wife for less than a month and an Adamsky for over 28 years. So, why didn't I take the Mrs. plunge? When I was almost 6 years old, my family immigrated to the United States as refugees of religious persecution from Kyiv, Ukraine. Growing up, I never pictured myself as the 'type of girl to get married'. A slew of boyfriends, bad dates and Mr. Wrongs led me to my soulmate and life partner, Derek. As cliche as it sounds, he was the perfect yin to my yang. Before he popped the question, we had a long discussion about my stance on my name. 'If this is a dealbreaker, don't even think about asking me to marry you,' I said to him. Well, I'm glad he asked anyway. Growing up 'Americanized', I hated my Russian-sounding name and even tried to change my name as a child. My family worked diligently to assimilate into the culture and make a life for us here. And now, I'm sad that I've lost a lot of the cultural traditions, but I will always have my name. My name means my heritage, my history and keeps me connected to roots. And when we have kids, and they ask me why my name is different from Daddy's, I'll have a great story to tell them." - Marina Adamsky, 28, of Hoboken, N.J.

Click through the slideshow below for results from a HuffPost Weddings/YouGov survey looking at attitudes about men and women changing their last names after marriage.

Last Name Changes After Marriage
of
Share
Tweet
Advertisement
Share this
close
Current Slide

Keep in touch! Check out HuffPost Weddings on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

Around the Web

How to Change Your Last Name After the Wedding - The Knot

City Clerk's Office - Name Change Options - NYC

Women Keeping Their Last Names Less Common - Should I ...

Vanessa Lachey talks baby weight, son's routine and name change