Advice on name changes?

I assume hyphennated last names are a big nono? LOL.


I have my mom’s last name/maiden name as a second middle name and it works for me. (She changed her last name to match my dad’s when I was in middle school, mostly because she was tired of getting confused with long-time coworkers who had the same last name as her). We are planning on giving our baby my last name with my husband’s as a second middle. Just putting that out there as another option. Colloquially we plan on going as the ‘my last names’ or to continue to use our super awkward mashup last name. Husband will be keeping his official last name.

Also, in my state the mother’s maiden name goes on the birth certificate, regardless of what her current last name is so I’m not sure changing your name would mean another birth certificate.


I think emotional. Like if he wants to change it that’s cool, but I made him, I name him first.


I understand why some people find them the best option. It seems like how common it is to hyphenate varies by culture.

But as a person who nearly declined most of my company’s benefits because I didn’t want to do paperwork, I personally wouldn’t want to go through life with a hyphenated name.


this has been so helpful and I love you all

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I have a different name from my kids. It is very rarely an issue. When it is it’s a very small issue.


My parents aren’t married so my mom never changed her name and I have my moms last name and my sister has my dads last name. It was never a problem that lasted more than 30 seconds.

One time we tried to go to Canada and the boarder guard thought we were trying to kidnap my sister but he just hadn’t read my dads passport closely enough to see his last name.

Also because patriarchy ™ you’ll probably have an easier time with a different last name from your child than your husband would. What you’re talking about changing too is a much more common arrangement than what you have right now.


The hyphens get complicated after a generation or two. Erica Jong, the author, has a hyphenated daughter, Molly Jong-Fast. Molly has a son, Max, who goes by Jongfast-Greenfield. I guess he thought Jong-Fast-Greenfield was too much. Max’s kids are in for a world of hurt.


We had 3 names in the family (mom’s, my dad’s, stepdad’s), and so did a couple families we knew. It wasn’t really an issue. I admit, we basically never crossed international land borders, though. But when traveling internationally, having to bring a copy of birth certificate was/would have been the least worrisome preparation…


I have a different last name from my son. We named him Duckling [middle name] Vetinari Duck, so he has 2 middle names and a last name.
(Me being Vetinari, DH being Duck). No issues so far. DH’s mum changed her name back to her maiden one after getting divorced and I never heard anything from her about issues, she seemed as delighted that neither of us were changing surnames as my dad was concerned that I wasn’t changing mine.

DH declined my offer to take my excellent surname. We have a second baby in-utero and I am debating whether to name the same or differently.


I have a different surname from my spouse/kids. Has never been an issue, even when traveling with them alone internationally. I always did the letter of permission from their father+ birth certificate thing just to be safe, but the only place that ever checked was Canada. God, how I love Canada.

We officially changed DS’s name when he was 3 or 4, I think. His dad had used one spelling of his surname to get his first driver’s license in the US, but when he applied for naturalization he wanted to change the spelling slightly, which you can do just by putting the desired new name on your naturalization paperwork. Which we filed shortly before DS was born. But then in the hospital the nurse told me we had to use the old spelling since DH had no identification with the new surname – I later found out this was a lie and we could have named DS Sparkle McSparkleface if we wanted to, there is no requirement that the kids last name match the parents. But anyway, I was in pain and on drugs so I signed myself up for court visits and new passport applications and whatnot because a nurse was dumb.


Anecdata that having a different official surname from my kid is yet to cause any issues for me. People needing our names, like medical receptionists, don’t even assume we’ll have the same name - they ask for kid’s first name and surname, and my first name and surname, no problem.

I say official surname because Ewok has my surname as a second middle name, so it’s part of his name and he can say he’s “Ewok Mysurname Hissurname” if he needs/wants to share that bit of identity with me.

Mr H gets called by my surname far more frequently than I get called by his, and neither of us mind this. The only time I’ve been offended was when I was sent mail to Mr and Mrs Hisname Hissurname :laughing: 85% of women change their name on marriage here and I have zero interest in that. Now that my Dad is dead, having his name as my surname, and as part of Ewok’s name as his second middle name, is meaningful in a new, special way. I am still happy with the reasons why I chose Mr H’s surname for Ewok (mainly that Ewok is growing up in my culture / country, not Mr H’s, so the surname is a link to that half of his heritage).


These are my experiences, too. Including Canada being the only place I’ve been questioned. It involved my then 3 year old being interviewed by Canadian border guards about his favorite toys and food and “point to your mom” :laughing:


I think difficulty varies by state. I had to hire a paralegal and it cost 600. It also took quite a while to go through the courts. I would let your husband handle the paperwork. I had my kids in 3 different states and all used my maiden name. Sorry you are so stressed out .