Is your big day in Chicago coming up soon? There are so many things that go into the planning of a wedding and the combining of two lives and we’re sure the idea of changing your name isn’t at the top of your list. However, for some brides the changing of one’s name can be overwhelming and definitely does stop and make one think twice about whether the right decision is being made.
Here are some questions to ponder when trying to decide if you should change your last name after getting married in Chicago.
What Part of Your Name Do You Want to Change?
This is typically the most common question that goes through many bride’s minds before getting married. What is the best way to change my name while still honoring my maiden name? Over the years, many women have decided to go in different directions. Some choose to only change their last name and stick with a more traditional route while others don’t change anything at all.
A somewhat popular option has always been to adopt your new spouse’s last name and then make your middle name your maiden name. This option is particularly attractive not just for the sake of sentimentality, but also to help overcome minor and sometimes tedious tasks required after changing one’s name. If you change your maiden name to your middle name, you’ll need to update several areas of your life with this change, including bills, general paperwork, the social security office and elsewhere. Having your maiden name as your middle name makes it easy to verify that you “added a name” and you’re the same person.
What Are the Pros to Changing Your Last Name?
Some brides simply choose not to change anything at all. A few pros for women not changing their name after getting married are:
— You don’t have to change any paperwork or accounts. It can be a hassle to change everything that has your name on it. You’ll need to get a new driver’s license, change info on bank accounts, and many other places that will come as a surprise.
— People from your childhood will still be able to find you. Have you ever tried to find someone on Facebook and nothing comes up when you search? How frustrating! If you keep your name the same after getting married, you’ll never have this problem and your friends will still love you.
— Many women find that staying true to family heritage is most important and really don’t want to change their name whatsoever. Taking on their husband’s name is not even an option for these women as family pride and history is most important. Yes, we consider this a pro.
— You get a second chance at a new last name if it’s been an issue for you in the past. Let’s be honest, not everyone has a last name that is easy to pronounce or spell or for some reason, has never been your favorite for one reason or another. This could stem from family conflict or other personal reasons. Taking your husband’s last name can alleviate some of these frustrations if you fall in this category.
The Cons of Changing Your Name
There are always two sides to every story. If you choose to keep your maiden name, there are cons that go along with it.
— Plain and simple, it takes getting used to. There will be days when you still refer to yourself as “First Name + Maiden Name”. This will happen on phone calls, when signing your name for various reasons and it will last longer than you think. Be sure to give your husband a heads up that you read this article and it might happen from time to time so he isn’t offended.
— There are a few states that make the process of changing a name trickier than most. If you already have a middle name, you have to choose one or feel like “one of those people” by listing more than one middle name whenever you give your full name. Getting used to having a middle name is also a process, and you may need to add this middle name to a lot of documents. Everything from your driver’s license to passport must be in the exact same name with the same middle name, especially if your first and last names are both fairly common.
— We’ve all heard the stories of celebrities and how a name stays no matter what. There’s not many famous people decide to change their names after getting married. If you are well-known, changing your last name could be a bad PR move. If you are an internet sensation or have a following, keeping your last name the same is usually the safe play. Otherwise, you might lose followers, fans or your audience if your name changes! Yes, we know this is rare and might not be you, but hey, it happens.
It Really Is Up To You
What your name becomes (or stays) after you’re married is entirely up to you. There is no right or wrong answer when it comes to changing your name versus leaving it the same. You and your husband to be should come to an agreement about it. If you have any questions at all regarding getting married, the process, what to expect, or anything at all, do not hesitate to contact us at Wedding Guide Chicago.