Those of you who did not change your last name... - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-23-2011, 06:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Which last name did you give your child(ren)?

My boyfriend and I are expecting our first (my second) andhave not been together long, no plans for marriage. He's mentioned his dislike of his last name, so I was surprised when he casually mentioned his assumption that our child will have his name. I questioned him once he mentioned it while we were alone, and I expected something along the lines of, "oh, I guess we should discuss that," but instead he became quite offended at the notion of our child having my last name. The only reasons he could give for that were sexist "Babies always get their father's last name" or reasons that apply to me too "I want to have the same last name as my daughter." I realized I wasn't sure what the protocol for this is, so what did you do?

p.s.--I liked my son's dad's last name better than mine, plus we got married while I was pregnant, so my son has his dad's last name and I still have my maiden name. I don't care for bf's last name.

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Old 03-23-2011, 06:27 PM
 
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I don't think there's a standard protocol - its seems to be whatever works for that set of people.


In our case, DH has a very common last name, mine isn't. I figured we'd use his last name if it was a boy and mine if it was a girl (like a friend did), but DH wanted to use mine irrespective of gender. Mind you, his last name got used for the middle name so its still part of the equation :)


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Old 03-23-2011, 06:35 PM
 
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I agree that there isn't a standard.

 

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Old 03-23-2011, 06:37 PM
 
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Our situation is also different.

My wife and I are married, but she has kept her last name. Our child has my last name. Her last name is a middle name for our child.

I suspect that your bf wants the child to have his last name because that is just the way it is usually done and possibly so he can feel more connected to the baby. The baby is definitely a part of the mother who birthed it, but the father doesn't have that same connection to a fetus and baby that a mother does. The name is a solid connection. And i guess it can mean to him that no matter what happens to your relationship with him, the child will always be "his" too.

But I guess you will never know for sure until you can really discuss it with him and he can honestly say what the issue is. For me I do like the connection and the symbolism of the baby being a part of me too.


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Old 03-23-2011, 07:27 PM
 
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I kept my name when DH & I married.  With DD we both really wanted her to have our own names and ended up hyphenating her last name (Firstname  MyLastName-HisLast Name).  Not ideal, especially because my last name is long and complicated and his is tricky to spell.  She will come to hate us for it someday soon (probably when she starts school and has to write it) and we are ok with letting her pick whatever she wants to do with it when she is older.  Strangely enough, she still uses her super long last name but insists on being called by a different first name that she picked out.


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Old 03-23-2011, 07:36 PM
 
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Neither of us changed our names when we got married. Dd1 has DP's last name and dd2 has mine.

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Old 03-23-2011, 08:11 PM
 
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Dh and I are married but I kept my last name so our last names are different.  We gave ds dh's last name.

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Old 03-23-2011, 08:17 PM
 
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Dh and I both had strong feelings about our children having our last names. DH's reason was the "traditional" ones, children should have the dad's last name, people will think they aren't my kids, etc... Mine were why should my children by default have the dad's name, my family is also quite small and I am literally the last one in my line with my last name, and it is an uncommon name. Since neither one of us wanted to budge easily, our children have two last names. Yes, it is a pain, and they are free to choose which name they want to use when they get older if they just want one, but for now, this was the best solution. 


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Old 03-23-2011, 08:27 PM
 
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when we get married, I'm keeping my last name, so the kids get both our last names, hyphenated with DF's last name first. I figure that if they want to drop part of it later on they'll drop the second part (that's what DF has done with his hyphenated last name, not legally, but for everyday use). it was important for me for practical reasons to have my last name be part of our kids' last names.


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Old 03-23-2011, 08:42 PM
 
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We seriously and strongly considered combining our last names into a new last name for our child. In the end, though, we went with DH's last name as the true last name, and my last name as a second middle name, so our son has four names: Jude Middle MyLast DHLast. It works for us, though DH was pretty bummed about not using the combined last name.



 
 
 
 

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Old 03-23-2011, 09:59 PM
 
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Father's family name. It seems to be the law in HK that if the father is named on the birth certificate, then the child gets the father's family name. It didn't bother me that much - I know I live in a patriarcal society and the family name *I* use  and consider "mine" is my father's family name.

 

I didn't change my name on my documents mainly because it would be a huge bother. I answer to the name of "Mrs. X" at doctor's offices and the kids' school. In emails to the kids teachers, I often put sign off as Givenname Myfamilyname Husbandandkidsfamilyname. 

 

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Old 03-23-2011, 10:01 PM
 
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DP and I aren't married, and I'm not sure we ever will be.  The kids have my last name because I know they'll always live with me (well, until they're grown up) and I'll always be part of their lives, and that may or may not be true of DP.  (Also, I like my last name better than his.)  If he had felt strongly about at least one kid having his last name, I suppose I might have considered it, but he never expressed an opinion so I just did what I wanted.

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Old 03-23-2011, 10:01 PM
 
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Dh and I are married. He kept his name, I kept mine, the children bear a hyphenated name.
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Old 03-24-2011, 01:16 AM
 
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I kept my last name when we married and did a similar to the below, which is give DS a givenname mylastname DHlastname. I really want to consider it as two last names but can't get past a cultural perception that it's a simple case of mother's maiden name as middle, even though I kept my maiden name.

 

Recently, as a partnership, we decided that we should all have the same surnames, for a variety of aesthetic and security reasons (identification, legality, etc). So both DH and I are changing our names to reflect the dual last name / mother's maiden as middle situation. So my everyone in the family's name will read givenname mylastname DHlastname (DH's last for aesthetic reasons, but culturally it's more common as well. That's taken into account for us). I plan to solve the issue of "it's just a middle name" by referring to myself by both names, which has a big impact as I'm a high school teacher - because people call me by my last name ALL THE TIME EVERYDAY. So I'll get them to say both. Cool.
 

For the record, we are a hyphenating-minded kind of family, and would have hyphenated if we didn't both have looooong northern-european last names. A hyphenated surname for us would be a 23 character nightmare. In our opinion, not the best choice for the family.

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peony View Post

Dh and I both had strong feelings about our children having our last names. DH's reason was the "traditional" ones, children should have the dad's last name, people will think they aren't my kids, etc... Mine were why should my children by default have the dad's name, my family is also quite small and I am literally the last one in my line with my last name, and it is an uncommon name. Since neither one of us wanted to budge easily, our children have two last names. Yes, it is a pain, and they are free to choose which name they want to use when they get older if they just want one, but for now, this was the best solution. 



 


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Old 03-24-2011, 02:07 AM
 
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We're married but I kept my own name.  Both girls have DH's last name.  It wasn't a big deal for me - I wasn't even terribly invested in keeping my last name to begin with, and am open to possibly changing it to match the rest in the future.  I'm not particularly fond of my last name, and it's my father's last name too.  If it were my mother's last name I would be more inclined to want to keep it and to have the girls called by that name too.  Also, since we're now living in DH's country of origin it's nice that the kids have a name from there rather than being instantly identified as 'foreign' by their last name.


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Old 03-24-2011, 06:22 AM
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I kept my last name when we got married. DH still struggles with this and will randomly spout off about it. I just feel like, hey this is who I am!! This is my name I've had since I was born, I like it, I don't want to change it, my last name means a lot to me, I have a long family history and my last name is a connection to that big family!

 

DD has DH's last name and I won't lie, some days it makes me sad. It is confusing to explain to people when I need to do legal stuff (insurance etc.) for her that we have different last names. I mean it's not complicated but people pause. Some days I really want to take DH's last name for my own, others not so much. I think I will probably end up hyphenating my own last name so I can share it with DH and be linked to DD through names.

 

It was never even a discussion whose last name DD would take, it was DH...I just knew it was a battle I would NEVER ever have won and I wasn't interested in fighting it.

 

Goodluck mama! Like a PP said, there is no one right way to solve this problem, every family is just so incredibly different.

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Old 03-24-2011, 07:24 AM
 
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I kept my last name (which is a name I chose years ago after a divorce--it was my little brother's middle name), but hyphenated it with his.  Our son has the same hyphenated last name as I do.  It was a massive compromise for both of us.  The name thing was very hard for us.  Your BF does not have the right to demand that the child has his last name.  He has the right to a preference, as you do, but he can't force you to do it.  By the way, this is still a big issue with my MIL...she refuses to acknowledge that our son's name is not completely the same as hers and my husbands...she sends him cards only addressed to the baby's first name and their last name, makes his crafts and monogrammed stuff with only that name, etc.  Very annoying.  Ug.  Good luck, woman!  Hopefully one of the other posters has given you an idea that will be good for you all. 


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Old 03-24-2011, 02:00 PM
 
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DH and I are married and I kept my own name. Before we had kids we agreed that any boy children would take his name and girls would take my name. We have one boy who has DH's last name (no hyphen or anything.) Pregnant now with #2, probably our last. If it's a boy will again have DH's name and if it's a girl will have mine. Having a girl would mean 2 kids with different last names, but whatever, people will get used to it. After all, my last name is different from DH and DS's and it's not a big deal.
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Old 03-24-2011, 02:09 PM
 
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Ours are hyphenated - his, then mine.


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Old 03-24-2011, 02:56 PM
 
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Dh and I are unmarried.  Both of the kids have his name.  I wanted our dd to have my name, but my dh explained to me that when he was growing up 2 of his sisters had different names than him and it was a PITA. 


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Old 03-24-2011, 03:28 PM
 
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Dh and I are married.  I kept my name.  The kids have a mash-up of both of our names.  The last 3 letters of my name followed by the last 4 letters of his name.  It turns out that is a "real" last name.  When we did a Google search there seems to be about 150 people with that name in the U.S.


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Old 03-24-2011, 07:40 PM
 
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Hyphenated here. Well, technically my oldest child's last name is the same as my husband's but we want to change it to being hyphenated.


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Old 03-24-2011, 07:44 PM
 
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DS has my wife's last name.  Our situation is a little different than yours though  - I'm DS's bio-mom, so we felt it was important that DS and DW had something special connecting them.  DS and I share genes, and DS and DW share last names.

 

If it were somehow possible for us to have a biological child together, we would probably have done something else.


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Old 03-24-2011, 08:21 PM
 
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Don't strap your little baby down with a bad surname just for sexist reasons. I know a woman who made fun of me for being a stay at home mom, still used her maiden name, was all "liberal" (except of the close minded variety, you know, the non breastfeeding, no cosleeping, does everything by mainstream "cool" standards) anyway...she said she hated her husband's name, but when she had her baby, she gave the baby his name. I asked her why she did not give the baby her name, and she looked at me like I had 3 heads. Well, she had that attitude toward me anyway, as I was a stay at home mom. I was not even home schooling yet. But she would tell me how she could never respect her mother because her mother did not work. Stupid stuff.

 

Anyway, my children have my last name. I have been married for some time. All my children are by my husband. But they have my last name. I think, eventually, the sexist assumption that all babies must have the father's last name go by the wayside and parents will pick the last name according to which one they like best or represents them the best.

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Old 03-24-2011, 08:29 PM
 
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I kept my last name because I didn't see any reason to change it.  I like my last name and it is part of my identity.  DD has DH's last name mainly because we like DH's last name and all the other grandchildren were girls who took their respective spouse's and/or father's names.  DD is the only grandchild in the family with the DH's old family name.  It is special to us for that reason.  


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Old 03-24-2011, 10:48 PM
 
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My kid has his Dads last name, but I know many people who gave their kids the Moms/other parents last name. I also know a few families that couldn't decide, or didn't like their last names, so made up a new last name for their kids.  Sometimes the adults changed their last name to match as well. Sometimes the name would be something completely new or a mixture of both the parents lasts names. Maybe that would work for you?

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Old 03-25-2011, 03:43 AM
 
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We are married and I kept my name. DD has mine and DS on the way will have mine too. My name is an important part of my identity and only if we all change our names to something new will DH share the same last name as our children. He's also welcome to switch his last name to mine at any point too. Sheepish.gif

 

It sounds like your DP is more upset about the fact that one child will has your ex's last name, and that you won't give the new baby his, than it just being picking which parent's last name to use. It might seem silly but I think he's jealous.

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Old 03-25-2011, 04:07 AM
 
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I didn't change my surname, and DD has DH's. My surname is difficult to spell & pronounce in DH's culture, so we decided to go with the easier choice seeing as we live in his country. I figure DD can always add my name later if she wishes.

 

I know plenty of people who have used the mother's surname. My friends did it simply because they liked the mother's name better (the father took his wife's name too, which solves the problem of having different surnames). Others have done it by giving boys the mother's name, and girls the father's name. Slightly confusing I guess, but it's no big deal unless you'd hate having to explain it. 

 


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Old 03-25-2011, 05:03 AM
 
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I have 2 DD's with different fathers.  I am no longer with DD1's dad (XP), she is first-name my late-mothers-name XP's-name.  I'm still with DD2's dad (and intend to be until i die or he dies) but have no intention whatsoever of getting married, and DD2 is first-name middle-name DP's-name.  I will probably have one more kid and though DP hasn't heard about it yet, i intend to give it MY last name.  So the kids will all have different surnames.

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Old 03-25-2011, 09:07 AM
 
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We are married. Both children have DH's surname. I was happy to go the traditional route and give them their father's last name. I really dislike the hyphenated combination of our names (and actually, I think most hyphenated names are awkward, so it wouldn't have been my preference anyway). If I really cared, I suppose I would have compromised with one child using his name and one mine. 

 

 

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