LADIES OF LIST WHO HAVE CHANGED THEIR LAST NAMES

(And men too if this applies). Please help me settle this debate
  1. My entire life I thought that when you get married and want to take your spouse's last name, you just swap it with your last name
  2. Your first and middle name remain the same
  3. This is what every woman I know of has done
  4. (And I've lived all over the US so I really don't think that it is a regional thing)
    But most of my family is from Chicago if that means anything
  5. Recently I learned from my friends that they think that the standard is to change your middle name to your last name and your last name to your spouse's
    And thought that the idea of keeping your original middle name is ludicrous
  6. Which just seems SO COMPLICATED
  7. I mean, why should I have to change two of my names?!
  8. I would appreciate any information you can provide
    Personal experience, thoughts, reasonings, traditions etc
  9. (I'm not planning on changing my name at any point in the near or far future but just really need some clarity because I feel like my entire world has been turned upside down. Things I took for granted are now being questioned. Help!)
  10. I've heard it both ways. As for me, I dropped my last and kept my first and middle the same.
    Suggested by   @amieshmamie
  11. I kept my maiden name as a middle name for marriage #1. Divorced and changed it back. Married again and kept my middle name and added his last name. I like my middle name more than my maiden name. And I had a kid w a different last name and that was difficult for the rest of the world to figure out.
    Suggested by   @clairewentthere
  12. I always thought the "traditional" way was to just swap the last names (which is what I did). I know more people who didn't change their name at all than I do people who took their maiden name as their last name.
    My aunt changed her last name but goes by First Maiden Last at work because she had established her career before getting married and wanted to keep her last name in the picture just for that.
    Suggested by   @DG
  13. My mom changed both - she replaced her middle named with her maiden name and then took my dad's last name.
    In her case, ditching her middle name had a lot to do with the fact that she hated it (Sue). So this gave her a chance to get rid of it, and keep her maiden name as part of her identity. But there are so many options available, including no name to change at all - so don't be limited by what's "traditional." Do what feels right for you and your partner!
    Suggested by   @aj_oppen