Tradition dictates that women should take their husbands’ last names in marriage. But, in these modern times, many couples no longer follow these outdated rules. This unconventional thinking, however, can cause drama within families, as not everyone will be accepting of breaking tradition.
One bride-to-be, who wanted her husband to take her last name, shared her dilemma on Reddit after her decision led to family drama. User @agirlhasnoname_2 posted her problem on a subreddit and asked the public:
“I, a female, want to give my fiance my last name, but my father and brother don’t want me to. Am I wrong for planning on doing it anyways?”
Scroll down to hear more of her story.
This Bride-To-Be Wants His Fiance To Take Her Last Name But Her Own Father And Brother Disapprove
She Thinks It’s Sexist That The Men In Her Family Take Ownership Of Their Last Name
She Later Posted An Update Saying Her Father And Brother Are A Little Old School But Are Still Amazing People
Why Do Women Take Their Husbands’ Last Names?
The tradition of brides taking their grooms’ last names dates back to the 11th century, according to Brides. The concept of “coverture” – an old legal practice – states that a woman’s identity is essentially erased after marriage. As she and her husband become one, she will be covered by her husband’s identity. Husbands would have complete control over their wives’ legal and financial rights.
Today, about 70% of women take their husbands’ last names. In the UK, around 90% of women still follow this practice. While new-age feminism has surged, the majority still follow this tradition.
“It is quite surprising… [so many women adopt the man’s name] since it comes from patriarchal history, from the idea that a woman, on marriage, became one of the man’s possessions,” explains subject expert Professor Simon Duncan to BBC.
While this may seem like a harmless practice, Duncan encourages us to question how it could affect society. “Is this just a harmless tradition, or is there some sort of meaning leaking from those times to now?”
Duncan’s research found that the two main reasons for keeping the tradition alive are the persistence of patriarchal power and the idea of having a “good family.”
“Some men still insisted on it – the reproduction of that sort of patriarchal assumption from the past,” says Duncan. “Some women go along with that or internalise that. So, we found people who say they are really looking forward to being a ‘Mrs’ and changing their identity to that of their husband.”
Many Redditors Supported The Original Poster
A Woman Shared Her Own Experience Of Refusing To Take Her Husband’s Name
This Father Was Appalled And Said He Would’ve Been Proud