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My last name and feminism

I wrote this in response to haddayr.  I thought it was interesting enough to post here.

My brother's wife changed her name to my brother's last name.  It's also my last name as I kept my maiden name.  I don't think keeping one's maiden name is particularly feminist or changing it is unfeminist.  I got my name from my father.  I'm keeping my father's name.  My husband's last name doesn't sound good with my first name.  It's also a very common Chinese name while my last name is an unusual English name.  It's not Burmese tradition.  I like how my full name reflects my two heritages.  And it's a terrible bore to change one's name in this country.   If I didn't like my name; it was boring or sounded terrible to me I may well have changed my name. 

I think if I was a "proper feminist" I'd have convinced my husband to change both our last names to a different name.  But as he pointed out both of would have to undergo this bore. And his mother would have a fit. She gave me a hard time about keeping my name.  Ironically changing one's name is not Chinese tradition either.   And so her other daughter-in-law who's far more traditional than I am kept her maiden name too because she's Chinese.

I sorta get the family unity thing. My kids have my husband's last name.  I do sometimes get addressed as Mrs [my husband's last name].  I used to correct folks.  Now I usually don't bother.  More rarely my husband gets addressed as Mr [my last name] especially at Safeway where he uses my card.  He also used to correct folks and doesn't bother.

Occasionally it comes up.  All the utilities are in my name because I signed up for them.  Utilities are one of the things that determine residency.  We're about to register my daughter for kindergarten.  My husband will register with a utility document in my name.  "Won't the school district get confused?" asked my husband. "No." I said. "You also have to bring her birth certificate.  It contains my name as her mother."  "Oh that's right." he said and walked away.