Although marrying your true love is a romantic and happy occasion, you'll have a lot of paperwork to catch up on after the big event. And if you're thinking about changing your maiden name to celebrate your new change of status, there are a lot of factors you need to think about before making the switch. For example, what are you going to change your name to? Here are some examples of the choices you can pick from:
Not changing your name. This is the easiest choice, because you don't have to file a name change. It's socially acceptable in modern societies to stick with your maiden name, and in some countries such as China, it has long been a common practice for women to keep their last names after marriage. This option works best for women who think the act of taking on the last name of their husbands is unfair, or if the change of last names will result in a less than pleasant sounding combination. Other reasons why women might want to stick to their birth surnames include sentimentality and preference. A lot of women also keep their last names not to hurt career prospects because they either have built a brand around their last name, or their name is already well known in their industry. In fact, our friends at LearnVest tallied the true cost of a name change, which is a whopping $500,000. The figure is based on a Netherlands study, which showed that women who keep maiden names earn $1,172 more per month.
Dropping your maiden name. Taking on your husband's name is a common tradition and many women see it as a way to embrace their marriage. Another reason for taking on your husbands name is just to lessen the confusion from others, especially when it comes to your children. Or it can also be that your first name sounds better with his last name, and you've been wanting to drop the embarrassing birth name combination for years now.
Put a hyphen in it. Some might think the hyphen combination is the best of both worlds — you get to keep your last name and stick to tradition by adding on your husband's name. Some issues with that is, depending on the length of the last names, your new name might end up being too long and confusing, and your last name might sound too similar to his last name so
A mashup. If none of the previous options sound appealing, you can go the more unique route and mash up both of your names. To have a true mashup, you'll have to take part of his name and part of your last name and line them up next to each other. In other words, you can't just take random letters and insert them wherever you like. One warning with this is, it might be a hit or miss, the end result may sound refreshingly unique or just bizarre.
Read on for more name change options.
Creating a new name. If you decide you want to randomly mix up the letters or parts of your last names together, you'll be creating a new last name. Take one or a few letters from your name and play around with it until you like what it sounds like. Or, simply pick a word that has great significance to you.
Having him take up your name. Didn't you hear Beyoncé say that girls run the world? This is an option that few men rarely take. The reasons for them doing it might include defying tradition, proclaiming their love, or maybe just the simple fact that your last name sounds better than his.
Figuring out what name to take can be hard, and the process of changing your name after marriage will be even more taxing. With so many options to pick from, I'm wondering what type of name change appeals the most to you — what name will you stick with after you marry?