1. Whose name should be chosen?

    jake on 2007.03.30
    at 10:45 pm

    Everyone seems to look at me funny when I mention an article about men taking their wives’ last names. (from Digg) I don’t see where the issue is. Different cultures have always had different traditions. The article also references hyphenating last names as a compromise. Either way it’s up to the couple involved. I’m comfortable with the idea of adopting a future wife’s last name if it makes sense.

    One example of when this would make sense (sorry to drag you into this) would be our friend Jess. Her last name is the creation of ancestors coming to America, at least that’s the story I remember. Regardless she has a unique name and assuming she wants to keep her lineage alive who’s to stop her?

    Or another instance where I’ve witnessed this actually occur was a couple where the husband–to–be had a malicious family. Outside of one brother he wished he didn’t belong the people who raised him. He took his wife’s surname as a form of escape.

    I can’t say for certain what I will do when this situation comes up. But no matter what I have two brothers to keep my family name going within the foreseeable future. Do you think you would break tradition in this manner?

    Posted in: History


    Comments (3)

    1. Tyler said on 2007.04.02 at 06:05 pm

      Hybrid names

      Jess (my Jess, not the one referenced in your posting above) and I have joked about creating a hybrid of our names, like McNevins. Her maiden name is McDonough, and mine name is Nevins.

      We suggested the same for a couple of friends of our who are getting married this Spring… His last name is Hughes and hers is Quenneville… We suggested Qughes.

      I think Jess got the idea from one of her favorite movies, Father of the Bride 2. (A movie I’m afraid to say, I’ve seen WAY more times than any man should.) Anyway, two of the main characters (the “bride” and her new husband) have a baby and consider giving him a newly fabricated name combining the letters of their last names.

      One instance of a man taking his wife’s name that I can think of is one of my favorite bands in the 90’s: The Nields. The Nields consisted of two sisters (last name: Nields) and three guys named Dave. One of the Daves married one of the sisters and took her last name. So in a band of five people, there were three Daves and three Nields’s.

    2. brian said on 2007.04.03 at 12:44 am

      I have some dear friends who went the route of both changing their names to be hypenated: “Hers-His” which was pretty cool. Of course, when your last name is already 12 letters long, the last thing you care to do is add one hyphen and five more letters.

    3. THE Jess said on 2007.04.06 at 02:23 pm

      Good topic, Jake. I certainly like having such a unique last name, and know that there are very few (0?) young males in my family that will be capable of carrying it on. But hanging onto my Melgey moniker after marriage just seems to open up a whole new can of worms. Do my children get the Melgey name (these, of course, still being merely theoretical)? I am not a fan of hypenating, but presumably I will like my mate and his last name enough to want to give him some credit for those little people he helped produce. (Unless, of course they turn out to be creeps, in which case he may be glad they have my last name.) Okay, enough of that talk. Even theoretical children at this point freak me out.

      I won’t hyphenate, and I won’t fabricate. So I guess I’ll always be a Melgey, if, when the time comes, it still means that much to me. I certainly agree that the tradition of wives taking their husbands last name, like many others, is one that needs to grow and be accepted in different forms as times change. Yes, maybe my husband will be a Melgey too! (Insert backwoods rural Connecticut ag-fair-loving, 4H-doing, many-cousin-having joke here.) :->

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