I’ll be honest, when I first got engaged, I hadn’t even thought of not taking my fiancé’s last name. It just seemed like what you did, so I didn’t give it a second thought.
However, I’ve read quite a few blog posts like this since about why people have chosen not to take their fiancé’s last name, and it sort of threw me into a bit of a crisis. I hadn’t considered it, and now all of a sudden I felt like a traitor to feminism for not doing so.
Even though I know it’s an incredibly personal decision, I feel like taking your partners last name has become almost stigmatised, because of the ‘tradition’ of ownership which is gross. But, nevertheless, I have my own reasons for why I am opting to take Zack’s last name and I thought that it was important to share them because, like I said, it’s an incredibly personal decision that you and your partner get to make (and only you and your partner should be involved in it), but not many people write about why they do, only why they don’t.
Reason 1; I Hate My Names
I have never, ever, ever been a fan of my name. Hayley Marie Snell is my full name, and I’ve just never liked it. I just feel like Hayley doesn’t suit me, and Marie is a bit old fashioned for me. And, as far as Snell goes, I’ll leave you to imagine the mean nicknames that kids called me in primary school. The only thing I have ever liked about my name is my initials (HMS), but most people do not even know that I have a middle name, so that’s definitely not going to impact my life that much.
I’ve just never in my life felt like my name actually represents me. In contrast, I love Zack’s name; all of them. Zack George Hindson suits him perfectly, and I think that all of his names are timeless. In fact, I’ve always loved the name George before I even met Zack.
But, anyway, basically I don’t like my names.
Reason 2; I Have A Split Family
Another reason why I don’t really feel like my names represent me is that my family is split. So I share a name with my dad’s half of the family, but not my mum’s. I do have a good relationship with my dad, but I don’t feel like his name represents my whole identity, and I never have.
In fact, even before my parents split, I always wanted to have a double barrel name of my mum’s and my dad’s family names; even when my mum had the same name as me. I don’t really know why, it was just something that I always wanted to do.
When my parents did eventually split, I considered changing my name to a double barrel. However, at this point I was with Zack, and his family had kind of become my family too. Even at this young age, I knew that I wanted to marry Zack one day, and his family is split too; how could we have representation of all four families in our name? We just can’t (not without having a reeeeeeaaaaaalllllyyyyy long name anyway), so we had to make a fair decision.
Reason 3; I Like The Way It Sounds
A bit shallow maybe, but Hayley Hindson sounds better, in my opinion. I’m a fan of the letter H and an English student, so obviously I love alliteration, so it just seems right to me.
Reason 4; It’s Important To Zack
Not for reasons of masculinity or pride, but for personal, family reasons. Zack and his brother are the only ones to carry on his family name, and his brother is currently 1 so won’t be carrying it on any time soon. Plus, Zack is really really close to his dad, who is also the only person who could carry their family name on.
We have had the conversation about double-barrelling, but we both just simply don’t like it.
And, I don’t really have any particular sentimental connections with my name. I know that it is likely that my brother will carry the name on, or even my cousin who also shares the name. It’s just not something that’s too important to me, whereas it is something that is really important to Zack.
Reason 5; I Want To Create A New Family
Including most of the people from our previous ones, but also any little people we may create/opt to care for.
If we opted to both keep our names, then one of us wouldn’t share a last name with our children. Or, if we opted to double-barrell our children’s last names, then what decision would they have to make if they eventually decided to get married?
It becomes a complicated, tangled web, and it’s just something that is not important enough to me to want to deal with all of the complications. I am definitely not judging anyone who chooses to keep their name or double-barrel etc, but for me, personally, I know that taking Zack’s last name is the right decision for me. I want a fresh start with our own little family, and that is something that is really important to me; much more important than keeping a name that I’m not too fussed about.
I know I keep saying it, but it truly is a personal decision. It’s one that no one else should make for you, and one that is unique to everybody. If you want to F the tradition, do it. If you want to follow it, do it. If you want 17 million last names because it represents who you are, then do that too! You do you babe.