👩🏼❤️💋👩🏿👨🏻❤️💋👨🏽Last Names of Kids & Spouses
Only 10 states allow men to change their name after marriage
“A man is not allowed, in a majority of states, to change his name to his wife’s simply by virtue of marriage” (Karin Yefet, 2020).
“People look at [our child], look at Kerry, look at me, & then go “just trying to work out who he looks like more” or “who’s eyes he has”. And I’m just like really?!”
People work to ascribe similarities between children and parents” (Melville, 2022).
In same-sex female couples, most children are given the last name of the biological mother (Almack, 2005; Gartrell et al., 1999; Patterson, 1998).
Naming kids after the nurturer makes sense as that parent generally spends the most time with them.
In heterosexual marriages, children take the last name of the parent that didn’t give birth (the father) (Johnson & Scheuble, 2002; Liss & Erchull, 2013l; Nugent, 2010).
Nurturer’s Last Name (Bartholomay, 2019)
Since the breadwinning spouse is less likely to spend as much time with the child, it doesn’t make sense for the family to change their name to the breadwinner’s last name. Thus, in same-sex households, the child may take the last name of the parent who spends more time at home with the child so that it’s easier to interact with day care, schools, etc.
Cyrena Selden, 2020 — Adoption & Kids’ Last Names
Even kids who are adopted by heterosexuals take the father’s last name (Patterson & Farr, 2017; Suter, 2012).
In contrast, about 52% of kids adopted by same-sex couples were given hyphenated names (Patterson & Farr, 2017).
Most states don’t allow husbands to take their wife’s last name (Anthony, 2010; Yefet, 2020). Only [ten] states explicitly allow a man to change his name through marriage with the same ease and procedures as a woman (Hannah Haksgaard, 2019).
“A husband usually has to undergo a cumbersome procedure and a court process to convince a judge to change his name. At least one court told a man attempting to take his wife’s name that getting married was not a valid reason” to change his last name (Yefet, 2020).
Name Change & Divorce — Melanie MacEacheron, 2021
Among divorced opposite-sex couples, the marriages where women took their ex-husband’s last name lasted 60% longer than marriages where women kept their premarital surnames or hyphenated the names.
Natalie Hurst, 2021–14th Amendment Implications of a Complex Name Change Process After Marriage for Men
It is not so easy for a man to change his name after marriage.
Only ten states allow men to use a marriage certificate as a legal name change document — Colorado, North Dakota, New York, Massachusetts, Louisiana, Iowa, Hawaii, Georgia, Oregon, and California (Jones, 2016).
Except for in those ten states, a man will have to go through a statutory name change proceeding (Rosensaft, 2002). A typical statutory name change proceeding, which most states practice, involves a court hearing and a judge’s order allowing the name change (Allen v. Lovejoy, 1977).
These differing name change processes for men and women may be an unconstitutional infringement on 14th Amendment equal protection guarantees (which provides that all citizens deserve equal protection under the law) (U.S. Const. amend. XIV.).
In this instance, the statutory name change process discriminates on the basis of sex — with men being subjected to a complex and more expensive name change process to change their name after marriage. In the past, statutes compelling women to take their husband’s last name have been struck down on the basis of 14th Amendment equal protection and as a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act (which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, and national origin).
Though Congress and case law have not dealt with men changing their name after marriage, a man’s ability to change his name after marriage falls within the same policies (Rosencraft, 2002).
Though no direct cases have resulted from the disparate impacts of the name change processes on same-sex couples, cases have dealt with the importance of same-sex couples’ last names (Pavan v. Smith, 2017). Because same-sex couples, like men, are discriminated against in their ability to change their name after marriage, this violates equal protection guarantees as well.
Pavan v. Smith ➡️ “The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples who have children via surrogate have a right to have their names listed on the child’s birth certificate.”
Many states have different name change procedures for anyone except a woman taking her husband’s surname after marriage (which includes hyphenating). Accordingly, a formal name change petition may have to be filed with the court in the following circumstances:
- A man taking his wife’s last name
- A couple choosing a last name different from either partner’s
- A same sex marriage partner changing his or her last name
In some states, the process for changing your name is the same. From Social Security to the DMV, you’ll have to fill out the same forms, provide the same proof, and wait in the same lines. But in others, it’s a more complicated process that requires a court appearance and even more bureaucracy. That’s because, depending on the state, your husband’s name change may not be considered part of the marriage process, but instead is seen as a legal name change where a marriage license isn’t enough.
It’s worth noting that, while the name change process for women is relatively similar from state to state, the process for men varies drastically.
In a 2015 poll of 1,000 adults taken by YouGov for The Huffington Post, only 7% of respondents said it was “great” if a man took his wife’s last name upon marrying; 30% felt it was “fine” and 40% felt it was “a little odd” — though the survey did reveal more openness to the idea among younger respondents.
Laura Hamilton et al., 2013 — Name Change & Gender Attitudes
About 72.3% reported that wives should take their husband’s last name & 49.9% said that it should be a legal requirement for a wife to take her husband’s surname.
Underwood & Robnett, 2021 — I Would Like Us To Share A Name
One of Us Will Change
Among the participants who expressed a desire for a surname change, the most common preference was for one partner to adopt the other’s surname (30% of the sample).
We’ll Both Change
A smaller percentage of participants (19%) who wanted to share a name with their partner expressed a preference for both partners in the relationship to change their surnames. Common ways of accomplishing this goal included hyphenation, blending the two surnames, and coming up with a completely new surname.
For many years, women in heterosexual marriages were required to adopt their husband’s surname upon marriage (Emens, 2007). The 2nd-wave feminist movement fought against traditional surname laws, and women eventually earned the right to make their own surname choices (Goldin, 2006).
Although women are no longer legally required to adopt their husband’s surname, most women still adhere to the tradition (Boxer & Gritsenko, 2005; Gooding & Kreider, 2009; Robnett & Leaper, 2013; Scheuble & Johnson, 1993). This implies that the marital surname tradition continues to exert a strong conformity pressure within heterosexual romantic relationships (Pilcher, 2017; Robnett, 2017).
Some people in same-sex relationships may feel caught between resisting practices that are common in heterosexual relationships (i.e., on the basis of heteronormativity) versus adopting these practices as a way to express the “legitimacy” of the relationship (Clarke, Burgoyne, & Burns, 2013; Clarke et al., 2008; Hequembourg, 2004; Suter & Oswald, 2003).
Genetics & Biology
🌈If Pelody donates an egg to Kim Song-hwa & Song-hwa gives birth, that means…
➡️Song-hwa is the biological mother
➡️Pelody is the genetic mother
Biological Motherhood is based on gestation; genetics are based on the egg (Epstein, 2018; Ettorre, 2002; Melville, 2022).
For Same-Sex Couples, Changing Names Takes on Extra Significance
"Before I came out and was still on a path of planning to marry a man," says Victoria, "I was pretty radical and said…
“MaCade [LGBT Family Law Attorney] has observed that
among same-sex couples, females tend to take their partners’ names more often than males,
likely because it’s just more customary for women to change their names, & because “in proportion, women are having children more often than men & it is those with children most likely to make the change” (Vicki Valosik, 2013).
Why Don't More Men Take Their Wife's Last Name?
In the run-up to marriage, many couples, particularly those of a more progressive bent, will encounter a problem: What…
Meet the men taking their wife's surname
When Laura Henshaw and her fiance, Dalton Graham, decided that he would take her last name when they married, they knew…
Using your marriage license for a name change is mostly available for women; only a handful of states will allow men to do the same. According to the lawyer for the Florida man who was accused of fraud, [ten] states — California, New York, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Oregon, Iowa, Georgia and North Dakota[, and now Colorado] — currently have laws that specifically allow a man to change his name upon marriage.
Changing Your Name Regardless
Even though it may be more expensive, anyone can choose to take his or her wife’s last name by petitioning for a legal name change. Each state and local court may have a different form for the petition, and yes, there will be filing fees.
“In States where men are not allowed to change their name with a marriage license, the legal adult name change process they’re asked to follow is usually expensive and very long. Most just give up. In fact, in all the 50 states only Colorado, North Dakota, New York, Massachusetts, Louisiana, Iowa, Hawaii, Georgia, Oregon, and California allow husbands to use a marriage license to adopt the last name of the wife.”
“The name Elsa surged after the movie Frozen was released. Overall, 38% of people believe that it is ok to name a child after a celebrity or historical figure, and 34% think it is ok to name them after a fictional character.”
The history of marital surname change — a specifically English phenomenon — reveals that its origins are at best controversial. And at worst, they are deeply unsavoury.
British hereditary surnames are only about 1,000 years old. Imported by the French around the time of the Norman Conquest, they stabilised throughout much of English society by the 14th Century, with Celtic regions taking longer to adapt. Married women, however, were perceived to have no surname at all, since the Normans had also brought with them the doctrine of coverture, the legal principle that, upon marriage, a woman became her husband’s possession. Her state of namelessness reflected this. In the words of one court in 1340, “when a woman took a husband, she lost every surname except ‘wife of’”.
But, around the turn of the 15th Century, the French doctrine of coverture received a unique English twist. There was another interpretation of coverture available, based on scriptural ideas, which focused not on the husband’s power over his wife but on the unity that marriage gave them.
In the words of the English jurist Henry de Bracton, they became “a single person, because they are one flesh and one blood”. As this idea gained ground, so did the clerical habit of designating a married woman by her husband’s surname. The married woman had formerly been a vassal with no surname at all, but now, in theory, she came to share the surname of her husband as a symbol of their legal and spiritual unity.
However, if there was one person in a marriage, that person was the husband. Married women still could not hold property, vote, or go to law. Legally, at the point of marriage they ceased to exist.
By the early 17th Century, the custom of the woman adopting her husband’s surname was sufficiently entrenched in England that the antiquarian William Camden could write: “Women with us, at their marriage, do change their surnames, and pass into their husbands names, and justly. For they are no more twain, but one flesh.”
Crucially, the custom was also specific to England.
It was only in 1972 that a succession of legal cases confirmed that women could use their maiden names in whatever ways they pleased.
Tian & Cramon-Taubadel, 2020
In 1979, the central government announced the “One-Child Policy” (OCP), which began to be strictly enforced across the entire country one year later (Banister, 1987).
Son Preference — Shangao Wang et al., 2021
The OCP reduced the fertility rate, but it also led to soaring female infanticide, particularly in rural areas (Feng et al., 1999; Qian, 2009). Thus, in 1982, local governments began issuing rural couples permits for a second child if their first child was a girl.
Queens & Chess
The Queen in Chess is based on powerful European Queens, though the piece was originally referred to as the ferz/vizier in association with India, Chess’ country of origin (Stephanie Coontz, 2006). —
Remarriages Last Longer
Benson, 2013, 2016
Remarried couples tend to be more egalitarian as men began to focus on the other’s interest more (Yefet, 2020). Hence, remarriages are less likely to end in divorce (in the UK) (Benson, ).
Husbands in second marriages tend to be more helpful in household labor and more sensitive to their wife’s emotional needs than they were in first marriages; spouses in second marriages report that they share decision-making power and household work more equally (Pyke & Coltrane, 1996).
Patriarchal Tax Laws — Karin Yefet, 2020
“Many laws & policies encourage gendered division of labor (McClain, 2006; Johnson, 2004).
“The minority position of American tax law favors single-earner married couples over dual-earner ones (Kornhauser, 2010).
The system of joint marital tax returns aids traditional one-earner marriages and penalizes dual-career couples by imposing higher taxes than if each spouse were single” (Karin Yefet, 2020).
“By presenting women with the option of being the overtaxed second earner, or getting social security benefits & avoiding taxation, the tax code encourages women not to work outside the home” (Johnson, 2004).
Hemez & Washington, 2021 (US Census)
Living With Two Parents
Living with two parents has historically been the nation’s most common children’s living arrangement. In 1968, about 60.0 million (85%) U.S. children under 18 lived with two parents. But this number dipped between 1968 and 2020 when both the percentage and overall number of children living with two parents declined.
By 2020, although this living arrangement continued to be the most common for children, the number of children living with two parents had slipped to 51.3 million (70%).
The Birds & The Bees
Let's (Not) Talk About Sex
No, it's not 1950, but public school parents are once more at odds over what to teach kids when it comes to the birds…
Offspring = a collective noun; simultaneously singular & plural.
As such, ~offspring’s~ would be the possessive form whether referring to an only child or multiple children.
“With nationwide marriage access to same-sex couples, an unprecedented opportunity has been created to disentangle the relationship between formal law, gender norms, and marriage.”