I have a name... and it is one I have had for 31 years. When I got married, changing my name was not an option. Other people can make any choice they see fit, but I still equate the name changing practice to the outdated belief that a woman becomes a man's property upon walking down the aisle and therefore needs to take his name to reflect that ownership. I am trying to be open minded with others who choose to take their husbands name, but I admittedly have a hard time every time a friend or family member changes their name.
When My Loving Husband and I got married, I was very vocal about my keeping my name. I didn't feel like I should have to be so vocal. People should assume a woman kept her name unless she indicates otherwise. Even with my very vocal outcry that I would be keeping my birthname, I quickly started to receive mail to Michelle "Loving Husband"... or even worse, Mrs. "My Loving Husband". Ick. It's bad enough that the tradition of taking a man's last name has gone on so long, but can't we lose the complete identity loss of women through just being a Mrs.?
I gave everyone a year to figure out that I meant business with the name thing. After that year of consistently reminding people that I didn't change my name, I started returning mail to sender. Person unknown. For other women who have made the same decision I highly recommend this practice. It is a sure-fire way of standing your ground and getting your point across.
So this week, I received a wedding invitation to Mrs. "My Loving Husband". From a friend of mine. Mine. I'm still debating on whether I should go or not. Technically speaking, I wasn't invited... I was no where on that invite.