I did it because I love Mona - because I wanted her to know that I didn't expect her to become anyone other than herself. It mattered to me that we shared a name, so I reasoned I should be the one to offer mine up. And a combination name like Neufeld-Thiessen would only solve the dilemma temporarily. Eventually a child of ours would bring this unwieldy last name to his or her own marriage - most likely to another hyphenee.Some hilarious comments over there, like:
One question - when she divorces you in 5 years because she wants to be with a guy who actually HAS a pair, will you take your old name back?(Link via Kerry Howley.)
What did Meade and I do, you may wonder? Well, we're not making any more children — unless we're given a miracle — so the "family name" issue was absent. I didn't change my name the first time I married, back in 1973, and I've already gone through all the struggles of not having the same name as my sons. I had to sit silently while the judge who granted my divorce lectured me about the problem of women not changing their names. He presumed to opine — based on zero evidence — that my failure to change my name was a causal factor in the divorce.
I kept my name a second time. Why? #1: My sons have the middle name Althouse, and I care about that identification. I'm also damned used to my name after all these years, and I've made it slightly famous. Of course, I could keep using Althouse professionally and still have Meade as my legal last name, but I can also do the reverse and use Meade in practice for any purpose aside from signing various documents. And, as that last point reveals, Meade didn't change his name to mine either.