The Reasons I Changed My Name When I Got Married
- It was a symbol that we were a single family.
- A sign of love and devotion.
- Almost every woman I’d ever known had done it.
- I’d planned to change my name my entire life.
- I wasn’t far enough along in my career for my last name to be widely recognized.
- To make it clear I was the mother of my children once they came.
The Reasons I Changed My Name Back When I Got Divorced
- It was mine.
- I missed it.
- Turns out, no one cares if I have a different last name from my kids. Forms aren’t any harder to fill out, conversations aren’t more confusing, life isn’t tougher.
- I’d never taken the time to really think about changing it when I did it the first time, and now that I had time to think about it I realized it was the wrong choice.
- F—- the Patriarchy.
- If I get married again to a feminist who wants to take MY name, it’d be nice if it was actually mine.
- During all those years when I was waiting to replace my name with another one that I imagined would be a better one, I didn’t realize what I had and how much it meant to me.
- People call me “Mrs. Severson” or “Graham’s Mom” or whatever, but that’s okay. People call you things and it doesn’t change you. What matters about my name is what I write down and how I identify myself.
- Changing your name, even when your name is recognized and you’ve started to build a career with it, is okay. It’s called “rebranding” and these days it’s pretty common, so I wasn’t afraid people would forget who I was.
- It was a symbol of reclaiming myself.
- I realized that I wanted to be just one person and stay that person. I will not change my last name again.
- I like being at the end of the alphabet. And having the nickname J-dub or J-Wo or whatever someone comes up with tomorrow. And telling people it’s “bury as in bury the hatchet.”