Will my boyfriend be upset if I don't take his name after marriage?

I'm getting married in June to my boyfriend of 2 years. I'm so excited about the wedding and our life together. However, once we marry my boyfriend is expecting I take his name. I don't want to do this as I like my independence and my maiden name.

I know it's a tradition and everything, but are men usually upset if their wife doesn't take their name? I thought about double-barreling but as we both have long surnames it would sound silly. Why does my boyfriend even want me to do this? And will he be upset if I don't?


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Most Helpful Guy

  • I know I'm probably sexist..but I can't help how I feel...I would feel hurt by it. I mean, and its not because I'm some macho guy that wants to own his wife like property. I would just see a girl not taking my name as a slap in the face...and you have to understand for me anyway, its really because it is a tradition...and most women do it...my wife could have a better job than me, make more money, if it worked out I'd love staying home with children...but if she doesn't take my name it means that she felt like she had to deviate from the norm. think about this:

    Women can have better jobs, make more money, than their husbands but if she has her husbands name...no one really thinks of it much. I know plenty of married couples like that and no one really thinks of her ruling over her husband.

    Girls doesn't take guys name...ppl will say "o man, she's got him by the balls" or "SHE must wear the pants in the family"

    I just feel like...why does your name give you inpendence? and plus...marriage is about becoming LESS independent...ur committing to living with someone...and you have to do a lot of comprimising and bowing to your spuses wishes on occassion.

    Thats how I feel. I mean its just so common place that if a girl didn't do it...I would take it as a slap in the face. But maybe your boyfriend feels differently than me...prolly just ask him about it.

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    • btw, in response to a comment below...I'd chang emy name if the tradition was the other way around...because I knew it would be like saying to my wife "well, sure ill marry you, but I'm not all in, I'm still "my own person" your just an accessory that ill disacrd if I don't like it"

What Guys Said 15

  • Depends. I wouldn't mind taking up my wife's last name, depending on what it sounds like. If I didn't want to get her name, and she wanted to keep her name, I wouldn't be upset though. It's just a name. As long as we're married and love each other, I wouldn't mind us having different last names after marriage.

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    • Wish more guys were like you!

    • how gay sounding

    • Well then, first of all, please explain what is so MANLY about forcing your wife (who you supposedly love) into having to take your last name. And second, explain how it's GAY to say I would be OK with her keeping her name, and it wouldn't change anything between us or how we see each other. People can say what they want - I don't give a sh*t. Never did, and never will. As such, you are free to say what you want, but I already know you're too dumb to explain those 2 things I just mentioned.

  • If you like your independence and maiden name then don't get married to the guy. I am old fashioned in that a woman does take the man's last name as part of coming together or 'cleaving together' as the Bible states. It is the modern, liberal feminists who have made this seem like such a horrible thing. They have painted it up that a woman is losing her identity and becoming a second class person by taking the name of their husband. Nothing could be further from the truth. You are becoming a couple and a stronger unit. By trying to drive a wedge between you by showing him that you hate his last name or that marriage doesn't mean that much to you because you want to stay "independent", you are getting your new marriage off to a bad start.

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  • Emancipation is a good thing. But I still consider the 'tradition' of women taking their mens names when getting married an honourable act of devotion and love. I mean can we, as men, keep that little bitty of old school tradition for ourselves, for you women are already taking over the world with your beauty and intelligence!? And by the way, we already let you decide anything around weddings(as we are afraid to interfere with your dreamweddingplanning), for we see that as our devotion to you. Please ladies, don't take away our only remaining piece of prove that we, as a spiecies of men are worth being with you! Or aren't we!?

    Get married and do it in an honourable way, or be like a pussycat doll and sing out loud that you don't need a man!

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    • Now, now, Tibo.. Would you be offended if she DIDN'T take your last name? Or just mildly disappointed?

  • Inherently, I don't particularly mind the idea of letting her keep her own name. However, some things bother me about it.

    First, children. I personally would NOT do that hyphenated bullsh*t. That looks stupid, and if those kids get married and have kids, you could have triple or quadruple last names. I don't want grandkids named Jones-Smith-Brown-Wilson. That's ridiculous, and I know if I had a hyphenated last name, I'd hate it. Even in the event of no hyphenated names, whose name would they take? If you're keeping your name, get this sorted out before you get married.

    Second, I really don't like your comment about "your independence". You are getting married- you are giving up the "single woman" part of your independence. If you want your independence, don't get married. It sounds like you're pretty much saying "Yeah, I wanna get married, but I don't want people to know about it". If you aren't willing to give this marriage everything, then you're not ready for it. The least you could give is your name.

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    • Getting married means taking on a partnership, but it doesn't mean you're blending into one two-bodied person. You're still your own person with your own identity. Just because a someone wants to keep their name doesn't mean they want to pretend they aren't married. Men don't even have to consider changing their names- women certainly shouldn't be made to feel that it's an obligation.

  • Normally you take a mans name because it is a pass down thing. For kids it helps determine name, and also is a sort of sign that you are being accepted into his family to spend your life with him.

    Do you want to be known as Mr. al;sdfjsdklaj and Mrs. fkfisioslaj or just Mr. and Mrs. al;sdfsdklaj I don't see why it should be a big deal that you don't give up your maiden name. It just shows you are giving up part of your life to start another part with someone else.

    I don't know I think it is silly but I guess just ask him what his thoughts are.

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  • Talk to him about it. Not necesarily I guess.

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    Most people answering this question say they'd care more about the girl herself than how she'd be addressed. So no, he probably won't be upset, but that doesn't mean he wouldn't care at all. He'll probably want to discuss it. Just make sure he understands fully why you want to keep your name, and he should be okay with it. If not, you'll just have to sort it out and maybe compromise. But seriously, you guys are getting married. I doubt he'll want to call it off just because you want to keep your maiden name.

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  • If you want to be independent then don't get married

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    • Yeah I would definitely agree. Marriage isn't exactly being independant.

    • Very much agree. Even divorced I still use his name because of the kids and that was PART of my identity for all of those years. Your maiden name will never be taken away from you and you can use it if you like at any time but if you're married, you become one. That includes the name.

      And before anyone starts raging about that last statement, remember that a healthy marriage is balanced.

    • I agree. It makes it seem like a woman wants to get married, but don't try to think of her as being 'subjugated' by a man. She needs to be "independent".

  • Yeah, I'd be upset. It's something a guy always imagines, the same way a girl dreams of the perfect wedding dress and all that.

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    • Not all girls dream of that.

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    • Fbksguy, stop being such an ass at every question. Go deal with your issues in real life.

    • You said 'a girl' in the general sense - not 'some girls' thus you implied all beings that are girls.

      Lesbos? Honey, it's cute that you thought that's a legit argument tactic. Too bad attacking my sexuality isn't NEARLY as effective as you'd like it to be, mostly because I'm way more secure then you are, clearly.

      I never said I didn't want to get married, quite the opposite, I'm just not a bimbo that only cares about the dress. I care about the man and the promise made above all.

  • I wouldn't care. I guess it might make things easier, but it's still a pretty dumb tradition.

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  • I thought taking his the mans last name was the law. Didn't know there was a choice. Maybe I wrong about that, don't know...

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    • It's not written in stone. A woman can choose take her husband's last name or not. She can even choose to hyphen it like QA mentioned.

  • So you are happier with keeping your FATHER'S name? Interesting.

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    • Yep, you can't escape it.

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    • Well, you're using keeping the family name going as an excuse, why wouldn't he?

      I understand that you're trying to make it out as though the men have the hangup, but really it's you. Your mother didn't keep her maiden name.

    • I would have a problem if a woman didn't want to take my last name when I got married to her. However, we would be heading to divorce court if she thinks that any children of mine won't have my last name. That is a blatant "I am ashamed of you and your last name" statement to me. And don't get into this hyphenating the child's name with 15 last names just to "keep your identity".

  • If you don't want to take his name. Don't bother getting married and just continue dating exclusively. He'd most likely be hurt and upset if you didn't.

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  • My ex said she wanted to keep her last name IF we ever got married... didn't mind at all. And I think it's very narrow minded if you are bothered about it. And women should know their place? Women and men are equal... so there.

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  • If he is a traditional type, it's possible, but people are more accepting today of spouses keeping their names (or even men taking their wife's name). Still, if he's already expressed his expectation, don't be surprised if he gets unhappy. You should sit down and talk with him about it.

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What Girls Said 12

  • Hilarious how polar opposite the responses are from the men and the women.

    Personally, I come from a family where my mother did not take my father's last name and he used to be an unbearably authoritative dude from what I hear. So even he got over it, tradition and all. And our life and my taking on his last name was not this awful, messy ordeal. She kept her name, I took my dad's name, end of story. You can figure your kids out later, what do they have to do with you keeping your name, exactly?

    I have to say I somewhat resent the presumption I've seen made by the guys here that women are all bridezillas, essentially and we should let you have a bone because we plan to make your life miserable six months before the wedding day. Not all women are like this, by far, stop watching reality shows.

    I'm considering keeping my maiden name because I have a lot of love and respect for my father and having his name is a matter of pride, just like it is for men. He's my father, OBVIOUSLY my bond to him as his daughter will be inherently stronger than the bond I have with my husband.

    I don't know where you all are from given that I heard ideas that women are "entering the family of the man" or "spending their life with him." Um ... yeah, just like he's entering HER family and spending his life with her. Not trying to be picky here, but I smell some old double standards. None of this has anything to do with last name changing per se.

    If your boyfriend man makes a big deal about something so insignificant in the general scheme of things, you've got bigger problems. You're the one making a major change, contacting all your credit card companies, banks, schools, places of employment ... etc. The burden is on you, not him unless he takes your name too. So it's really up to you. Obviously you should ask him just to know where he stands on it, but he shouldn't be the one who flat out decides. Good luck to you!

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  • I am dealing with this issue a little bit because though my boyfriend and I don't plan to marry for several years, if at all, we have discussed marriage and he's made it clear that if we ever get married he would prefer that I take his name. I would like to make him happy, but I see my name as part of my identity, and I don't want to change that. I just don't feel comfortable with it; I'd feel like I was giving up part of myself. And marriage shouldn't feel that way. It's like that saying "You're not losing a daughter, you're gaining a son." Marriage doesn't mean losing yourself or becoming someone new, it just means establishing a partnership, and names have little to do with that.

    I think you have to do what feels right to you. If you would resent having to change your name, doing so wouldn't bode well for your future with your new husband. Talk to him and try to explain how you feel and why, and try to come up with a compromise. Maybe you could even both change your names to a blend of the two or something like that. Tradition has it's place, but it shouldn't be the cause of strife or conflict. It's not as though any actual harm could come of you keeping your name. It's YOUR name. It would be good to try to compromise with your fiancé, but don't let him make the choice for you.

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    • I don't think it's a bad thing for women to take the man's name. If she wants to, that's great. But I don't think it's right to feel pressured or forced.

  • Why are you talking to us about it instead of him? If you're getting married you'd better learn how to communicate with him FAST!

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  • I don't plan on discarding my last name when I get married someday, mostly because its incredibly uncommon and I want to maintain that affiliation in name to my family. Also, from a career stand point, I already have papers being published with my maiden name...I don't want to have to re-set/ explain that down the road.

    But I kinda like the idea of taking on the name as an acceptance into their family.

    So, I plan on just adopting them both. Me personally. He can add mine in if he wants, and the kids can just have his, but I'll dual last name it. I like to think of it as an expansion of who I am, so an extra name to decrcibe it its just fine with me. I'll still go by my maiden name professionally, his for everything else.

    I do really like the hispanic take on it where the kids take on each parents name and in common talk you just go by one anyway, but officially, the whole line up is there.

    That's my plan.

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  • Personally, I believe women should take the last name of the man. It is not only tradition, but it helps unify you two individuals as one couple, which is what marriage is all about, but I don't think it is necessary nor do I think that it is a sexist tradition. But you need to ask him how he feels about it, every man is different.

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  • Talk about it with your fiance but if he truly loves and you and wants to spend the rest of his life with you regardless of whether you choose to take his name or not, he won't have a problem with it. He'll care, but he won't have a problem. To everyone that says she should it because it's tradition, Madame Curie's daughter married a guy and he took HER last name.

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  • my mom kept her maiden name and the world didn't end.

    ask your fiance his thoughts on this. if you guys are getting married you should be able to ask him anything.

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  • Dont take it if you don't want to, its a stupid tradition and its your choice! All those men who say it is necessary to sacrifice for a marriage are being d***s because they don't have to change their names, instead women have to change the names. Its a sexist tradition

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    • Now that's an extremely feminist and obtuse response. Why don't us guys just not get married to any girl. That way we can feel less tied down, break up with you whenever we get bored of you and keep our sense of freedom, just like you want to keep your last name and your so called "independence". Now that sounds fair.

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    • I don't think getting married means giving up independence. It means spending your life with someone you love, someone you WON'T get tired of and someone you won't want to leave. However it is unfair to expect a woman to change her name, because the tradition dates back to when women were seen as property of their husband and getting married was the most important thing a woman HAD to do in order to live a life without shame

    • The girl has a point. It's a stupid and pointless tradition, and it changes absolutely nothing. Look at it from the outside - it's just a f***ing name! If she doesn't want to change it, WHY FORCE HER?! It's not like she's forcing YOU to change your name instead.

  • No one else can answer this question but your fiancĂ©, ask him.

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  • If he doesn't want to marry you because of it, you know it wasn't meant to be to begin with.

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    • I'm sorry, but this is just a stupid argument. For anything. "Oh he left me because I didn't have sex with him." Then it wasn't meant to be? "Oh, he left me because I didn't like baseball." Then it wasn't meant to be?

      OK, how about: "He left me because I'm a rude bitch who lies to him all the time." It wasn't meant to be, right?

      The "it wasn't meant to be" argument is retarded, regardless of which circumstances you're using it in. Even if two people have different interests, the reason is

    • because they had different interests. And not because "it wasn't meant to be to begin with". By using this argument, you're basically saying it's OK to do whatever the f*** you want, and everything will be fine. While this may appear true at first, it's actually a very selfish way to see things. It shows you don't give a sh*t about anyone else, and only care about what you want. It's basically saying "my way or the highway". It's saying "if you don't like it, then leave". Just think about that.

    • Wow...did someone break your heart? Is that why your so bitter? I don't need you taking out whatever your problem is out on me. And even after your long argument, I'm still sticking with what I said. :)

  • My sister kept her maiden name, her husband has no problem with it. Her kids took her husbands name, but it all works fine. Plus, she didn't have to change all her accounts/passport/etc :P

    I don't see what the big deal is. You are MARRYING him, giving your life to him. I don't think it's too much to ask that you retain piece of your family/upbringing.

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    • I agree with this exactly. And my mom kept her maiden name and my dad is fine with it. My sister and I have his name.

    • I know, right? I can see why a guy would be proud of his wife taking his name - obviously. But I don't see why it should be a big deal. I plan on keeping my last name, just so I can maintain that little part of myself. When you get married you become a partnership, not one damn organism. You are still your own person.

    • I also plan on keeping mine, or maybe taking the hyphen route. I do think it's sexist (or at least a double standard) when guys act like there's something wrong with a girl wanting to keep her name. You don't see HIM offering to take HERS.

  • I don't really see why he would be so upset. When/if I get married, I'll probably keep my maiden name, depending on what his is. If it's something terrible, there's no way I'm changing. My own mother kept her maiden name, and my father obviously didn't mind too much. It's a stupid thing to get hung up on, but you'll probably want to discuss this before the wedding in case he's one of those old-fashioned types.

    Just as a side-note, I'm quite sure most guys would want their children to have their last name.

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    • At least you were correct on your last statement there.

    • Right, so my first paragraph was incorrect? It is a stupid thing to get hung up on. It's an old tradition that dates back to the time when women were pretty much slaves and broodmares. Second class. If someone wants to take their husbands name as a symbol of love and cohesiveness, or some other bullsh*t, then that's awesome. If they don't, because they happen to like their current name, and don't like what taking it represents to them, that should also be awesome.

    • I don't have a problem with taking my future husbands name, as long as it's not a terrible name. But I would have a problem with my husband if he were to have a problem with me NOT taking it.

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