Mourning the Maiden Name

Mourning the Maiden Name

I sometimes forget that my surname will be changing really soon and I must admit, I will miss my current name. It’s something that I don’t think is written about all that often because brides are so unbelievably and over-the-top excited about becoming Mrs…Whatever. And don’t get me wrong, I’m certainly one of them.

But I do think it’s a little sad that most brides are so rushed to become their married counterpart, that they forget the family they leave behind (metaphorically I mean, no-one is going to war here people).

I suppose it’s a case of not wanting to offend the husband-to-be and their wonderful family (wonderful in my case at least – I read a lot about unwelcoming in-laws and I am incredibly fortunate not to be in that situation – Hello Carolmum and Peterdad!)

Miss to Mrs

I’m getting married in a whopping 3 weeks (breath, Karen, breath) and I can’t wait to become the latest Mrs Clough. But it will bring with it a new identity. Nope, I’m not going to shave my head and take up knitting or anything crazy like that. I’m going to be the same person, but probably a stone heavier (thanks wedding cake). With a new name though, comes with it a new history and a new family that you will forever represent and it’s something I’m really conscious of. I want to do it proud.

I may have mentioned it before but I’m in a Facebook Group dedicated to “Brides in 2013” – we get to talk about ideas, get feedback on wedding decorations and – more importantly – dress choices, as well as vent about general wedding planning when it gets tough so our normal friends and family don’t think we’ve become a Bridezilla overnight.

It’s a great little community. In terms of their name changes though, quite a lot aren’t taking their husband’s name and a fair few will be double-barrelling.

Although I know that changing your name is a hassle, I’ve never even considered any option other than taking Joe’s name. Not to mention the fact I already have 4 names, and double-barrelling for me would have been quite the mouthful – Urgh, I’m tired just thinking about it! I think there are feminists out there who think it goes against Girl Power and all that. I politely disagree.

Maiden name

Clough is the name Joe & I will one day give to our kids. I will spend hours of my life politely telling people “It’s GH not UFF” and “No it doesn’t rhyme with plough you silly sausage” and I’m okay with that. I look forward to telling people how to spell MY name.

I do think that the “Mrs” label sounds a little older than my 26 years but it’s a label I’ll wear proudly.

But here’s to Past Me and to the name I was given by my parents. I salute you Past Me. We had a good running. And here’s to Future Me. I’m sorry in advance for not yet practising our new signature. And I’m sorry you’re a bit squidgier round the edges than Past Me. It’s something we’ll work on…

  • I’m keeping my maiden name, but not really for feminist reasons, I just have a really strong sense of identity with my name and don’t want to change it. I may change it once we have kids but we’ll see. I’d never say what anyone else should do with their name!

    There are some really good posts about the whole name change thing at A Practical Wedding (there are some bad ones too!)

    • Hi Annabel! Thanks for commenting 🙂
      & thanks for the link. Some really interesting views on there! I think because I’ve been so used to the premise that people take their husband’s name (from family and friends who have been married), I found it really intriguing that there were so many different options that people took! I think if I had strong ties to my name in my career I would have had hesitations about changing it too, but luckily I’m not in that boat. Either way, exciting times! Congrats on your engagement. Really enjoying reading about your home coming together on your blog! Karen x

  • Kristen | Popcorn on the Stove

    Great post! I changed my name when I got married but I had decided to do that long before there was any wedding chatter (I have the same thought about having the same name as our future kids). It’s funny because both my mom and aunt kept their names… I guess I’m just a bit old fashioned 🙂

    • Karen

      Thanks Kristen 🙂
      I know what you mean! I’m so often the type of person to go against the grain and try to be different, but I surprised myself with how traditional I am about certain aspects of the wedding! Love your blog! Karen x