Name Changing After the Wedding7 August 2017
To change or not to change? That is the question, of course other than the one that leads to ‘I do…’ If you’re struggling with the idea of changing your name after marriage, here’s some UKbride advice!
The vast majority of modern brides will change their name to their partner’s – 80% to be exact – but it’s something more and more brides are weighing up.
The argument against
A name is your identity; it’s a very important part of your life. A name is what the rest of the world knows you as. While your closest friends and family will call you by your first name, everyone outside of your social circle will call you by your first and second.
Your maiden name might also have a lot of links to your past. You may be proud of your family’s heritage and story which is why changing your surname can be an emotional time.
The age of the average bride is increasing too, which means you’ve had a longer history and connection with your birth name making it harder to separate from it.
Career-driven women may have made quite a name for themselves, and accumulated a lot of connections with people, making it a little trickier to change your surname. Especially for women that have businesses in their name like Cath Kidston or Sophie Allport for example.
The argument for
However, although your surname may mean a lot to your past, a new surname may mean a lot to your future. You may want to start a family and taking your partner’s surname marks a new chapter, a new family, your second family unit.
It also keeps up an age old tradition. Like the practice of wearing a wedding band, changing your surname (or your partner changing his) shows your commitment to each other to the rest of the world. It’s also just an exciting thing to do – a new change, a new you, a close tie between you and your partner.
If you can’t make your mind up – it is a massive commitment to make – there is a way to make a compromise.
First of all, there’s the double-barrel. This used to seem like it was just for the elite, but it’s had a huge rise in popularity. This respects both arguments for and against; you can keep to your family roots but also start a new chapter, and it’s completely equal. This way your husband-to-be has to make a big commitment as well as you as you start your new life together.
Alternatively, husbands will sometimes take their bride’s surname. This may come down to aesthetics; the bride’s surname may sound better than the husband-to-be’s. It’s just important to know that that is an option in the modern world we live in.
A new idea that we love is called ‘meshing.’ This is when you combine your surnames to make one. We prefer this to double-barrelling as this can be a little bit of a mouthful. Mrs Robinson just sounds a little smoother than Mrs Atkinson-Roberts.
85,000 people changed their name by deed poll in 2015 which just goes to show how easy it is to do nowadays.
It’s undoubtedly a big decision to make, and one that you’ll live with for the rest of your life. But at the end of the day, it doesn’t change the fact that you love your partner, and don’t get too caught up in what you think other people will think. It’s your life and it’s your decision no one else’s.
The one thing you need to know is that you’re starting a new chapter in your life, and whatever your decision may be, it’s one you take with your partner – the one you love and will be spending the rest of your life with, whether that’s with his surname or not.