Ask Toi: Do I need to take my husband’s last name?

I would say that is a discussion to have with your new potential husband.  My last name is hyphenated.  My husband doesn’t like it even after I explained to him why.  It’s not a cause of dissention in our house. It goes to some men wanting their wives to take their last names and having the whole family with the same last name.  I do not have that.  My maiden name is included with his.  It wasn’t a chance for me to be disrespectful. It definitely wasn’t so I could go back to it later if it didn’t work out.  It was due to my grandfather on my mom’s side.  He passed away a few years ago.  I was unable to attend his funeral and in lieu of that I wanted to continue to honor his last name.  I didn’t have a close relationship due to us living in other states but its a deep issue for me to keep it. Also I have a cousin who I don’t have much contact with and a lot of my family is all over the place due to adoption of cousins. I have spent the last few years trying to put my family together. If I had married another man other than my husband I would have done the same I stated that before I got married and before there was even an engagement.  It means that it wasn’t partial to my husband at all.  Could I have honored my grandfather with a tattoo or something?  Possibly but I made the decision then and I didn’t change my mind.

I love that I am married to my husband and for the most part his family is very good to me. Taking his last name wouldn’t be a negative thing.  My husband isn’t one of those control type men but when we got married he refused to allow me to go in half for the marriage license.  Him and his friend had a joke that they own their wives lol.  It was a pure joke. There are some men who don’t take that as a joke. Some will think they own their wives so they want their name to reflect the name change. Again I do not know why you may be questioning your last name incorporating it with your new husband.  For me I stuck to my reasons.  I love my husband and I am his wife.  My last name isn’t fully his last name but I take my vows seriously and that’s more important than to me.  All of my children have his last name.  For my girls they will get married and their last names may possibly change. Back in the day women had to take their last names of their new husbands, I for one do not feel that is the case.  I would rather have a marriage that is built on the right things than to worry if both have the same last names and one or both of us aren’t honoring the actual vows. Again my husband doesn’t like it and it could come off to some as a sign of disrespect but for me its not.  I respect my husband and I’ve longed since we met in 1999 on Penn State’s campus to be his wife.  However this was the way that I made my stand to honor my grandfather long before I knew who I would marry. Be honest as to what you want and be honest with your new soon to be husband.

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