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He doesn't want me to take his last name, but I want to!

MissStepcut

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My FF doesn't want me to take his last name. Let's just say he doesn't like it himself, and doesn't want to inflict it on me. I want to take it, and since I am in school, it's a great time in my career to change it.

Should I respect his preference on this one, or just change it and let him get used to it? Our discussions on the subject lead to stalemates.
 

JuneRose

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Why do you want to take his name? Is it because you want your children to have the same name as you? Or because it will make you feel more a married couple if you share a name? I'm not questioning your desire to change your name (I will be changing mine when I get married), I'm just wondering what the motivation behind it is...
Maybe this could be resolved by his taking YOUR last name. This would mean you would get to share a name etc and since he doesn't like his surname he wouldn't be "inflicting" it, as he says, on your children either.
 

MissStepcut

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My 1) is definitely about the kids (he would want them to have his name). 2) is because I appreciate the signaling power of being unified under one name (people often don't assume we're together in situations where they would have in previous relationships; I assume it's because we are different ethnicities, but either way, I think sharing a last name would make it more obvious when we're checking into hotels, flights, apartment-hunting, etc).
 

JuneRose

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I don't think that you can "just change it and let him get used to it"... although your discussions haven't been going anywhere, I would say that this is a ideal time to work on this. There will be plenty more things you will disagree on in your marriage and I think that if he can't see your point of view (and you his) then you need to work on your communication. I'm sorry I really don't want this to come off as patronizing because I'm sure this is all stuff you know, it just seems to me that you are going to have to come to some sort of compromise or one of you will always be unhappy with the situation.
 

MissStepcut

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True. I could have used better terms. The reality is though, one of us will get what we want and the other won't; there isn't a lot of room for compromise. So, either I force the issue and go against what I know he wants, or I capitulate and he gets what he wants. All the hyphens in the world can't bridge our positions.
 

jstarfireb

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My husband and I had the exact opposite problem, so I hyphenated. Is there a reason why hyphenating isn't a good option for you?

Would it help to have a more in-depth discussion with your future husband about why he doesn't like his name? Is it just the way it sounds, or are there deeper issues (for example, an abusive parent with the same name?). I think you have a stronger position if his argument is just "I don't like the sound of my name and don't want to impose it on you."

If he's really adamant about it, I would just keep your name legally but refer to yourself socially as Mrs. Hisname. Put it on address labels or something...Mr. and Mrs. Hisname, not Mr. Hisname and Mrs. Yourname. You probably know that it's a HUGE pain logistically to change your name, but you don't REALLY know until you try to do it. I'm still dealing with the effects of hyphenating my name 2 years later (having to change my name with frequent flyer mile programs now because I didn't think of that initially, and now I can't put my frequent flyer number on several flights that I've booked...oh, and you can't do it online or by phone, but you have to MAIL them a copy of your new ID...which I did a month or 2 ago but they never sent me my new card...blahhhhh).
 

Lottie

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There are plenty of good reasons for keeping surname's and lots of people do it but if his sole reason for not wanting you to take his name is because he doesn't like then I'm not sure its a very good reason (unless, of course his surname is Focker!) particuarly as he wants any children you have to take his name - why is it ok for them to have his name but not you?

Personally, if he is refusing to let you take his name then I would give him the option of taking yours, and point out that any children you have will be taking whatever name you decide to have as your married name and it is up to him to follow suit or not. I realise that sounds a bit hard but not liking the name doesn't feel like a good enough reason to me.
 

missy

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I like the suggestion of his taking your last name. That way you have the same last name which makes it easier for children and other things but it's not the last name that he dislikes. Would he be open to this option?

I kept my last name with my dh's support but we weren't planning on having children. My sister switched to her husband's last name because they were planning to have children but professionally she still goes by her maiden name.
 

Rhea

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He doesn't like his surname and doesn't want to inflict it on you, but he wants the children to have this surname? How is it okay for them but not for you? I don't mind not having the same name as my partner, but I'd mind very much not having the same surname as my children.
 

Lovinggems

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I have an acquaintance whose husband took the the wife's surname due to family reasons (no longer has a relationship with his father etc).
 

Cehrabehra

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How about he change his name to yours? Or choose a new name together...
 

diamondseeker2006

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I agree with the others who said you need to ask him what last name the children will have. Tell him you would like one family last name (which is normal and traditional...not a thing wrong with that!!!). If he says the children will have his last name, then tell him you will have the same last name as well. If he says the children will not have his last name, tell him he needs to decide on a last name for the family and everyone change. If he hates his last name so much, he should change it. I think he needs to resolve this because it is ridiculous to be getting married and tell your future wife that she can't change to a married name!!!
 

MrsBettyBoop

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I don't think that it makes sense that his name is awful to inflict on you but not your children. If it is indeed a "bad" name, it would be much harder on them than it would be on you. Point that out to him.

:lol: @ Focker
 

iheartscience

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Addy|1315909123|3016360 said:
He doesn't like his surname and doesn't want to inflict it on you, but he wants the children to have this surname? How is it okay for them but not for you? I don't mind not having the same name as my partner, but I'd mind very much not having the same surname as my children.
Ditto this. That's quite an interesting stance to take. Are you sure there's not something else going on here? I'm not trying to get all armchair psychologist on you, but this makes no sense.
 

charbie

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My uncle took his wife's last name. I know it is quite unconventional, and I also know my own husband wouldn't have considered it for a minute. I know bc I asked once...my last name ends at this generation so I thought he might consider. I was met with a big :rolleyes: . Id want to know if there are any other reasons, since just cause he doesn't like his last name is a bit weak to me...
 

ksinger

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Do like my husband and I did - at age 20 I told him that I thought changing my name was a vestige of patriarchal culture, blah, blah, (I had my feminist hat jammed firmly on my head at that point), and he was horribly dug-in, offended, and indignant about the whole thing. We broke up for 27 years give or take a year here and there, (long strange story I've told on here more than once) got BACK together finally. I told him I was quite pleased to change my name now and he countered by saying he really couldn't care less whether I did or didn't, and to please myself. We laughed a bunch at that. I changed my name, but dang, at my age? what a thrash that was, and I'm STILL dealing with name change crap. :knockout:

Of course the advice to break up for 27 years is probably not so good, so I'll understand if this hasn't been ALL that helpful. ;)) It's just that this stuff probably won't bother either of you 20 years from now, nearly as much as it does now. Whichever side of the fence he's on though, it isn't his name that is getting changed, it's YOURS, so his wishes in the matter should be secondary, and as Thing has mentioned, his stance is more than a bit strange in and runs way counter to most men of my acquaintance. I too, can't help thinking there is more to it than he just doesn't care for his name.
 

ame

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MissStepcut|1315895697|3016333 said:
My FF doesn't want me to take his last name. Let's just say he doesn't like it himself, and doesn't want to inflict it on me. I want to take it, and since I am in school, it's a great time in my career to change it.

Should I respect his preference on this one, or just change it and let him get used to it? Our discussions on the subject lead to stalemates.
This is really like deja vu for me. My DH was that way too, he was desperate about it, wanted to take my name. I ended up taking his anyway, despite the fact that he despises it. He is actually looking into legally changing it.
 

centralsquare

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Cehrabehra|1315914794|3016384 said:
How about he change his name to yours? Or choose a new name together...
That's what I was thinking...choose a new name together...represents your new life together.
 

Miss Sparkly

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MissStepcut|1315896897|3016335 said:
My 1) is definitely about the kids (he would want them to have his name). 2) is because I appreciate the signaling power of being unified under one name (people often don't assume we're together in situations where they would have in previous relationships; I assume it's because we are different ethnicities, but either way, I think sharing a last name would make it more obvious when we're checking into hotels, flights, apartment-hunting, etc).
Why would he be okay with giving his children a last name he doesn't like (especially a son) but not you taking it?
 

bee*

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Addy|1315909123|3016360 said:
He doesn't like his surname and doesn't want to inflict it on you, but he wants the children to have this surname? How is it okay for them but not for you? I don't mind not having the same name as my partner, but I'd mind very much not having the same surname as my children.
I don't understand that either. I'd want to have the same surname as any children that I have so I'd see would he change to your surname if he really doesn't want you to take his.
 

Circe

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Something about this definitely sounds off to me, somehow: like a lot of other posters, I can't quite grok how he can hate his name, but still want to pass it on to children.

I'm just talking out of my ear, here, but ... is there any chance it's a cultural matter? Could it be that he feels his name would be somehow jarring attached to you? I only ask because I was once seriously involved with a gent of Latin-American extraction who thought the idea of blonde, blue-eyed, Russian-Jewish me being known to the world as "Mrs. Lopez" was hi-lariously funny. (And hyphenating my mouthful of a Russian name with his, more so.) Even if that is the case, though, this should be about you two, and not outside observers.

For me, the logical responses to a guy hating his name and not wanting to make it a millstone around a partner's neck would be,

1) Change the dude's name to the lady's

2) Choose a new name together

3) Hyphenate

Nowhere in there is he and the kids have a common last name and you're on the outs! Of course, none of this takes into account personal identity and machismo (name-changing is a big thing, and I think more so for guys, who aren't raised with the idea: so too the notion of patrimony and claiming one's offspring). So ... yeah. Definitely keep talking about it and see if he can put his finger on why he doesn't want to share his name, and what his alternative solutions might be ....
 

MissStepcut

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Circe nailed it exactly. He thinks it would be... weird? jarring? inappropriate? confusing? for a person of my ethnicity to have his last name, but that wouldn't be an issue with our racially mixed children.

He's farther in his career, so taking my name probably wouldn't work well, especially since he has publications.

Maybe hyphenating would help him get over it, but I am not the biggest fan of that... Right now my last name is short and only one syllable, his is also short and two syllable though, so maybe I will have to cope with that. If he didn't have such a strong opinion, I would have dropped my middle name and gone to Firstname Maidenname Hisname, which I guess is just a riff on hyphenating.
 

kenny

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He doesn't like his name.
You don't want yours.

Marriage is the perfect time for both of you to pick a totally new name you will both share.
 

wyndham

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It sounds like he doesn't want you to take his name because he doesn't want you to have to deal with people assuming you're a member of X race all day long when you're really a member of Z race, right? If that's the case, I think it's nice that he doesn't want you to constantly have to answer questions about your name, but it's really your choice because you'll be the one who has to answer the questions! I don't see how there's any downside for him in the situation. It's clearly not an issue of him disliking his last name, otherwise he wouldn't want your future children to have it.

I had a somewhat similar situation to yours: my husband has a pretty ethnic-sounding name, and I happen to not be a member of said ethnicity. I changed my name when we were married, and if anything, the few cases of "YOU'RE Mrs. XXX??" have been fodder for funny stories that we've told our friends and family. I think he's trying to protect you from something that's really not that big of a deal. At the end of the day, it's your name: you're the one who will be dealing with any inconvenience caused by the switch, so I say you should do what you want and assure your husband that you're fine with the occasional confused look.

Best of luck to you both!
 

movie zombie

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kenny|1315931461|3016580 said:
He doesn't like his name.
You don't want yours.

Marriage is the perfect time for both of you to pick a totally new name you will both share.


i so agree with this sensible solution.
 

MissStepcut

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movie zombie|1315933582|3016615 said:
kenny|1315931461|3016580 said:
He doesn't like his name.
You don't want yours.

Marriage is the perfect time for both of you to pick a totally new name you will both share.


i so agree with this sensible solution.
It would make sense if he weren't published/more established in his career. Even if he wanted to do this, I would be against it... it occurs to me, possibly for similar reasons he would be against me taking his. I am starting to understand his position better, ha...
 

junebug17

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My opinion is a little different from most posted- I think you should use any name you want. You're the one who would have to deal with any "confusion" that would arise due to the name, not him. If you're willing to deal with any issues that might come up, what does it matter to him? And I really don't think there would be any serious problems with you using his name. I think he's over-thinking.

I guess if he feels that strongly, a hyphenated name would be a decent compromise. I have a feeling he's not going to go for coming up with a new name, but you could give it a try.
 

fleur-de-lis

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MissStepcut|1315930473|3016567 said:
Circe nailed it exactly. He thinks it would be... weird? jarring? inappropriate? confusing? for a person of my ethnicity to have his last name, but that wouldn't be an issue with our racially mixed children.
Eh, just move to Los Angeles. We have plenty of blonde-haired women named Mrs. Fernandez, Mrs. Hussein, and Mrs. Hwang here. :lol:
 

Octavia

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Your FI may not realize this now, but regardless of what you decide to do about your name, people will still call you "Mrs. Hisname" if they know you're his wife. So the confusion issue really only applies to the people who meet you first. I chose not to change my name, yet still get called by his name regularly -- it kind of drives me crazy, but in your situation, it's probably preferable!
 

Jennifer W

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Ah, always tough when a couple don't agree on this one. You'll figure out for yourself what you need to do, but is it also possible that the idea of you changing your name offends him a little? My husband felt that way - he never said so, but the notion offends him and he would have thought a little less of me if I'd done it, I think .I never planned to change anyway, but we didn't discuss it.

I don't have the same name as my daughter, and I worried about that a little. In reality, it's....totally irrelevant. Honestly, I wouldn't let that be a deciding factor for what YOU want go go through life being called.

You can of course give your children any name you like - doesn't have to be his name. My daughter was supposed to have my name, but we changed our minds about her first name at the last minute and the name we chose didn't sound nice with my surname, so she got DH's last name purely for aesthetic reasons. Neither of us felt any particularly strong need to pass on our name, when it came down to it.

Wait and see how you both feel after your wedding? You can always change your mind, too. It isn't irrevocable.
 
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