Tuesday, June 14, 2011

A grouchy bride by any other name ...

So. I did not change my name when I got married. No new last name. No hyphen. Still the same old Cha Cha.

My last name is super, super common, so it wasn't about keeping the name alive. It was more about keeping me alive. Everything is changing ... my name didn't need to.

My Guy? Not super thrilled. But supportive. I can dig that.

My parents? A bit befuddled. They asked me a few weeks after the wedding if I'd really kept my name. When I answered yes? Complete and total silence.

Umm ... thanks?

But for the most part? It's been no big deal. The worst of it?

Let's say you're a huge big-box retailer who makes a pretty penny on bridal registries. You were already on my list because you sent me an e-mail at 4 p.m. the day of my wedding, telling me to hurry up and buy stuff from my registry that wasn't purchased for us. The day of the wedding!

But I digress.

So, let's say you throw a gigantic Fulfill Your Registry You Crazy Bridal Bitches Event. And the store is closed and only brides and their bored husbands can get in.

As a very generous gift to my husband, I attended this insanity alone. I checked in so I could trade in my nasty, dog-molested comforter. The guy at the door smiled at me. "What's your married name?"

So I told him. And then I ... umm ... got what is for me a little snotty, but for normal humans is probably still insanely polite. "I didn't change my name."

He couldn't find me. The other lady walked over. She couldn't find me, either. They asked My Guy's name. They looked for him ... and found him.

They'd filed my registration - for which I had RSVPed, with my name - under my husband's name.

Bed Bath and Beyond? While I'm thrilled you replaced the comforter that my dogs destroyed? I sort of hate your guts for being so fucking stupid. It's 2011. I am not the first woman who kept her name. And if I personally RSVP for your stupid event? The name I give you is probably the name I'm going to give you again when I show up. Just a heads-up.

You make millions of dollars every year from weddings, which are an etiquette minefield. You might consider brushing up on your Emily Post.


Mrs. G. said...

Good for you for doing what feels right. I have had occasional regrets over the years for changing my name, but frankly I would rather sport Mr. G's name than my father's.

Sara said...

I didn't change my name. Not for any reason except laziness and an intense dislike for the dmv. It bugs my husband so when he's listening I pretends its just hyphenated but its really not. Its just kind of the little piece of me that I didn't realize I'd want to hold onto....

Average Jane said...

I didn't change my name either. I just liked the sound of the name I already had. The only time it's ever come up as an issue was when I was once on my husband's insurance and they wanted proof that we were married. That's when I realized I'd never ordered an official copy of our marriage certificate. Oops. Fortunately we got married in Las Vegas and even a bazillion years ago you could order those online.

JeanGenie said...

Name changing is overrated. I wouldn't love you any less if you had changed it (well, maybe a little), but you just wouldn't be the same ChaCha. I might also be slightly biased since I didn't change my name either when I got married. Too damned old and I like my original one just fine. The only people who seem confused by this are my in-laws.

Angie said...

Oh, I so hope they have a social media monitoring tool and get the message

jean said...

I didn't change my name till my son was in school. I'm not sure why I did it except that no one ever called me by my maiden name any more. Now my middle name is my maiden name and I have my husbands last name. My father was upset when he found out.

Janet said...

Boo to Bed Bath and Beyond!

I changed my name after my first marriage. I was 21 and just did what I was "supposed" to do. Then after my divorce I changed it back. I won't change it again if I ever get married again.

Anonymous said...

That blows my mind. It's almost Stone Age-ish, no?