Should A Woman Take Her Husband’s Last Name?

03 Nov

Yes.  Duh.

Alright–I’ve seen it too much.  I finally have to speak up.  Ladies, why are you putting up such a fight to keep your own last name?  I don’t get it!  When you get married, it’s not like changing your last name to match your husband’s is a “bow down” to him.  It’s not like you’re losing your own personal identity.

Here’s my reasoning as to why women should take their husband’s last name:

1)  It unites you two as a family.  How often have you heard someone’s full name, like, “Oh hey, aren’t you Bob Miller?”  And thought, “Bob Miller, I wonder if he’s Kathryn Miller’s husband…”  (I don’t know a Bob or a Kathryn Miller–all completely made up).  What’s wrong with being identified as a man’s wife?  Not a damn thing!

2)  It keeps it easy on the kids.  Which last name do you give your kid then?  Hm?  Little Johnny goes to school and says, “My mommy and daddy have different last names, and mine’s got a hyphen in it.”

3)  Hyphenating is kind of ridonkulous.  Okay, so Kate Smith marries Joe Miller, and she becomes Kate Smith-Miller, and her children are Smith-Millers.  Judy Smith-Miller, their oldest daughter, falls in love with the dude who grew up down the road from him, who had a similar naming arrangement and whose name is Kyle Chandler-Bing.  So if they follow the rules of their parents, when they get married, Judy becomes Judy Smith-Miller-Chandler-Bing.  Do you see where I’m going with this?  A name could go on for decades!

4)  And just because back in the day, taking your husband’s name meant you were his subordinate does not mean that it’s true today.  It’s just tradition.  So shut up.

5)  Not to mention that it makes it really difficult for people to retrace their ancestry.  REALLY difficult.

P.S.  To men taking their wives’ names…I’m not even opening that can of worms.  I will just ask you to stop it.


Posted by on November 3, 2011 in Domesticity


Tags: , , , , , ,

6 responses to “Should A Woman Take Her Husband’s Last Name?

  1. Nicholas Roberts

    November 3, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    The only reason I could see a woman not taking their husband’s name is in a career where they are known for their name (i.e. a real estate agent). Nonetheless, I agree with the points you made, it seems to wind up at the “bow-down” mentality for women which isn’t the case at all.

    • erica42285

      November 3, 2011 at 2:02 pm

      Thanks, Nick. I agree! And in terms of the career thing–I kinda get that. But at the same time, it’s like I’d have to ask myself, “Is my career more important than my love with my husband?” The answer to that will always be ABSOLUTELY NOT.

  2. Nicholas Roberts

    November 3, 2011 at 7:05 pm


  3. Rebecca Germain

    December 5, 2011 at 6:49 am

    I didn’t want to change my name when Talin and I got married. I reasoned that if we had kids, they could take his last name. But it did sort of feel like I was losing some part of me. I ended up changing it because his parents freaked out about it, but I still see no real reason to change it. If the kids get one last name, heritage is still easy to trace. I don’t think a name really signifies any real union. It’s just a name. Years later, I’m fine with it. I think the thing that really pissed me off was someone trying to FORCE me to do anything, lol.

  4. Tanya

    January 10, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I agree with your view of gender roles. I am a stay at home mom and am also a strong independent woman. It makes me sad to see what is happening to gender roles these days. I have been enjoying reading through some of your posts as I just found your site today. I think that women should change their names rather than hyphenate, but when you gave the example of Chandler-Bing as a hyphenated name…. well I think that one is worth hyphenating for!! Of course I am obsessed with Friends. I love Roseanne too. 🙂


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