Changing your name is a tedious and tiring process. Sometimes it’s just not worth it.
Having the same last name as your partner is not a litmus test for your love.
So, why do people find this subject so sensitive?
Redditor ThrowawayForAll1 encountered this very issue with her fiancé. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for refusing to change mine and my children’s last name when I get married?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“I (25) have 3 children (girl 8, twin boys 5) from my first marriage, we got married when we were 20 but he died just before our first wedding anniversary. I also have a son (boy 1) with my fiancé and he has 2 daughters (girl 6 & girl 3) with his ex-wife.”
“My fiancé (28) proposed at the end of January and he assumed that when we got married that I would change my last name and my children’s last names to match his.”
“Currently my eldest 3 children and I still have my first husbands last name and my youngest has a double-barreled last name eg. Brown-Smith.”
“I have said that I am more than happy to double-barrel my eldest 3 children’s and my last name as we have with our youngest. I’ve explained to him that I want to keep my first husband’s last name for my children because he is still their father and I want to honor that, and I don’t want to take it away from them.”
“I also want to keep my name the same as theirs because it is easier when having to deal with schools and doctors if I have the same name as my kids.”
OP’s fiancé did not agree.
“He is upset because he feels like I’m not as invested in the marriage as he is and that I care more about my first husband by refusing to change my name.”
“He said that he doesn’t understand why I am trying to hold onto a marriage that lasted less than a year and that we were too young at the time for it to have been true love.”
“He also said his eldest daughter is getting upset by me refusing to change our last names because she is getting the impression that I care about the other children more than her and that I’m not interested in being her family.”
“I did suggest that if that was an issue maybe he could double-barrel his daughters and his last names so that they match but he said that would be unfair to his ex-wife who he shares custody with.”
“My family is mostly on my side however his family and some of our friends say that it’s unfair to him to insist on keeping my first husband’s last name.”
“They think that he’s right by saying it indicates that I value my first marriage more than a marriage with him and that I should change my name to show that we are a family.”
“I’m beginning to wonder if it is unfair for me to not want to change my name to match his because I can understand where he is coming from but at the same time I don’t think that it’s fair to take my first husband’s last name away from his children.”
OP added some edits.
“I forgot to mention above that yes my fiancé does plan on adopting my eldest 3 and his ex-wife has also given permission for me to adopt his daughters as well.”
“We have already discussed him double-barreling his and his daughter’s names to match but his ex-wife although willing to let me adopt her daughters is not willing to let us change their last names.”
“I showed this to a friend and she suggested that I include a timeline because it might make things clearer?”
“So started dating my first husband at 15 and we got married just after our twins were born. My husband died just before our first wedding anniversary when we were 21.”
“I started dating my fiancé after I found out I was pregnant after we had a 1-night stand when I was 23. I was just starting to date again and he had just gotten divorced.”
Redditors gave their opinions on the situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Most Redditors agreed OP was not the a**hole.
“NTA. It’s up you. Don’t cave to shitty in-laws, and if your fiance is most concerned over a last name, that’s a red flag.” ~ BrokebutGamer
“The fact he’s claiming they were too young for it to be true love is also concerning, not to mention implying she should be over it because they were only married a year.” ~ Love-As-Thou-Wilt
“Not to mention, OP and him have only been together for two years. She was with her first husband for five years by the time they married. I’m almost wondering if he proposed only because they have a kid together.” ~ taylferr
“Yup. This stance disgusted me. They had been together since they were 15 and shared 3 children, clearly it was pretty darn serious.” ~ PepperyDeer
“That’s what’s setting my off as well. My mom was 15 when she met my dad ,he was 17. They were together for almost 40 years (until his death). My aunt and uncle met at a similar age, they are still happily married. The fact that he NEEDED to diminish their relationship… Big red flag for me.” ~ Interesting-Issue475
“He claims she was too young to know true love at age 20, but not too young when they got married at age 23?” ~ MizuRyuu
“Yes this! Plus he says that her first marriage only lasted a year, belittling her. He acts as though it ended so soon because of divorce and not because he passed away. OP, I would strongly rethink this marriage before going any further.” ~ Indiana_2017
Redditors were quick to point out red flags.
“This whole relationship sounds concerning to me. OP has been with fiancee only a very short time. She would adopt his daughters. He seems controlling.”
“My honest guess is that she ends up stuck at home with 6 six kids (her own, shared, and his), unable to work, being dependent on his income and therefore his grace.”
“OP, you’re only 25, you don’t have to stick with that guy just because you share a child. It might seem scary but in the long run, life with him will be way more exhausting than life without him.” ~ Hour_Elephant710
“People who’ve never changed their name always throw it around like it’s so easy. It’s a huge fucking hassle! My wife and I don’t share a last name and part of that is just because we both already changed our legal first names and that was already bad enough getting everything sorted.” ~ connicpu
“My email address is firstname.lastname at gmail, with no numbers or anything. Anyone who thinks I’m giving that up for some man is out of their damned mind!” ~ baconeggsnnoodles
Why can’t OP choose her own name?