Taking the last name of your husband

Taking the last name of your husband: to change your maiden name to your husband's last name/surname or not to change?

Things have changed a lot. While in the past, women used to automatically assume the husband's last name or surname after marriage, today, many women (and men)no longer want to change their last names to the husband’s when they get married. Some women stick with their maiden names; others add the husband’s name to theirs, with or without a dash. But there are also couples who formulate their own surnames from both the wife’s and the husband’s. Which one do you prefer? Have you discussed this with before you get married?

Taking your husband's last name to match the kids' last name

Taking the last name of your husband to match the children's

Kids also pose a different challenge as far as this issue is concerned. Some women change to their husbands’ names just so their last name could match their children’s. Mothers usually find it awkward when their kids are a different name/surname to theirs and they have to explain that they are biological parents. As a result, most women change their surnames/last names to their husbands' for the sake of uniformity - which to many reads unity or family.

Some of the factors that influence the decision to change their maiden names

Taking the last name of your husband: Factors women look out for when deciding whether to change their last names/surnames or retain their maiden names include:

Most women look for several things before they decide:

1. Is the name a nice one (if the husband’s name is derogatory in any way, the woman might not wish to have the same name.

2. The length. Most women would prefer the husband’s last name to be shorter than theirs, or at least not longer than theirs.

3. Possibility of having to change again – in case of divorce or re-marriage

4. A few women think that it has a lot to do with love and acceptance – if you change your surname/last name, it shows that you have accepted the husband’s family and are ready to be a family unit.

The law (almost globally), allows women to choose between:

Retaining their maiden names

Changing to and assuming the husband's surname/last name or

Doing the so-called 'double-barrel' surname where the two are either separated by a dash or not separated.

The choice is ultimately yours as a woman. But do make sure that you discuss your intentions with your partner before getting married. Do not impose - discuss and understand.

Discuss whether you'll be taking the last name of your husband, before marriage

Communication is a way to go: discuss about taking the last name of your husband or not