The Road to Mrs. – I’m Excited to Change My Last Name!

Triple B's resident bride-to-be Nicole can't wait until she and her fiance Leonard share the same last name.

For the last 20 years, I’ve been getting pressure from my paternal grandfather to change my last name. My parents were not married when I was born, so I was given my mother’s maiden name. My grandfather has made it very clear that he prefers for me to have my father’s name. He’s even gone so far as to tell me that if I don’t change my name I will not be getting any inheritance from him. Our most recent conversation was a little over a year ago. He stated that since I was an adult now I could go to the courthouse myself and change my name without my parent’s consent. I politely informed my grandfather that I had recently relocated for Leonard and predicted that I’d soon be taking his last name. He suggested that I hyphenate, I laughed out loud.  

More recently, I was on a business trip with a co-worker of mine (and fellow military spouse) and she asked me my plans for changing my last name. In my current profession, I interact with numerous people in multiple facilities across 10 states. It’s taken me close to a year to introduce myself to the key people in my organization and will take a lot to get them to start referring to me with my new name. She indicated that she decided to hyphenate because she was older when she married and had already made a name for herself in the industry. She also had concerns because her husband’s last name was very long and hard to pronounce.

I hate to disappoint all the feminists out there, but I am very excited to be a Mrs. and to take Leonard’s last name. I’ve proudly represented the family I was born into for the last 32 years and have a great fondness for my mother, uncles, and aunts and have a very close relationship and bond with my cousins. But now I’m starting a new family and when Leonard and I become husband and wife I want us to share a name (and he’s made it very clear that it won’t be mine). Leonard and I have had the conversation about last names and he’s expressed that his preference is for me to take his last name, but regardless of if I do or don’t he is insistent that his future children carry his name. Just as it was important to my grandfather, I understand the importance to Leonard. I remember a scene from the tv show All of Us where LisaRaye’s character expressed to her ex-husband’s new wife that she was keeping his last name because it was her son’s name and “that’s what families do.” A common last name bonds us and provides a united front to the world. Just as professional athletes proudly wear the name of their team on their chest, I will proudly take and wear the name of my team/family.

I’ve already started practicing my new signature!

Read Nicole’s last post here and revisit this popular post about the controversial name-changing game.

 

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    Comments

    1. Bridgette Bridgette says:

      I chose to hyphenate my maiden name and new married name primarily because of my byline/career purposes. The beautiful thing about being a woman in 2014 is (for the most part) we have the right to choose. Although your decision differs my own, I appreciate learning how you arrived at it and I know the BBB audience does, too. But poor Grandpa, LOL! Make sure he gets an extra piece of cake at the reception. ;-)

    2. SpikesDtr says:

      When I became a Mrs. years ago I used both names without a hyphen. I love my father so much I wanted to keep his name. Over time I got lazy and didn’t use it as much but now that my son is grown,and I’m divorced, I desire to pay homage to my father by using it again solely. But, I was raised in a household where we all had the same last name and in retrospect, I see power in that. It seems less fragmented to me.

    3. Remember this is your wedding, do what make you happy. Love your spirit.

    4. Nicole Wagner says:

      Bridgette – I totally understand your decision. I’ve thought about keeping my maiden name at work because of the hassle involved with changing it. I’m still undecided about that right now. But if I ever change jobs I will certainly enter into it with my new name.

      SD – I definitely want my future children to have that same experience!

      Thanks for the support ladies. I’m excited as things are moving very quickly now. Thanks for letting me share my journey with you.

    5. Donna Fields says:

      I will be happy to have you join the family! I considered changing my name back but then I thought about Kristian. Names are very important and as strange as it will be for me you will be Mrs. Jefferson. (Hugs/kisses)

    6. Aunt Zee says:

      You do YOU! Isn’t it great that we now have options and as long as you both are on the same page, so be it. You sound really happy.

    7. That was sweet. I need change my last name before I get curse out.

    Trackbacks

    1. […] when our mothers got married, they typically took our fathers’ last names. But nowadays, brides have more options than ever: hyphenate, use both names, keep their maiden name or the couple adopts a new last name […]

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