The Hyphenated Married Name Debate
“I do”. Those are the two words synonymous with marriage, commitment and family. Now, what if your bride is ready to become one in everything but name?
Not too long ago, Shine (Yahoo) published an article about the much debated topic of hyphenated names in marriage. This debate began on Facebook and has reared its head in many relationships. I had this dialogue with some of my close male and female friends and the divide amongst this topic is huge. For the most part, males who are ready to give up the single life in exchange for wedding vows and commitment would like to join in every aspect with their woman — including name. In today’s world where women are beginning to outnumber men in the work place, this has become somewhat of a trend for her to keep her former identity as she joins in union with her man.
The author goes so far as to say that the concept of taking the man’s last name in marriage is archaic and patriarchal. Unfortunately, this is the cheap shot most men take when trying to define their lines in a modern day relationship. Anything seen as being masculine in relations with the opposite sex is considered chauvinistic, archaic and backwards. Patriarchal is used in a derogatory way as if Matriarchal is a better solution. In my opinion, if your name has prestige or a brand attached to it (i.e. Jada Pinkett, Eva Longoria, Beyonce) then it’s understandable to hold on to the maiden name. Otherwise, what is the fascination of holding onto an identity that reminds your partner that you are still separate in name? So as I see it, this is a catch 22 for most men. If you believe in unifying in name as well as everything else, do you stand up for what you believe in or do you begin to walk the long road of compromise?