Most men don’t have to deal with the question of changing your name after divorce and although it may seem like a simple question, it’s often more complex. Here’s Donna:
I am going to go ahead and take my maiden name back. When I filed the divorce paperwork there’s a box you check that says that if you want to go back to your maiden name or not so I filled out that part.
For a while I didn’t consider it. I thought I would just keep the name so my last name is the same as my son. But lately I thought he assaulted me and he abused me and now he’s still controlling me and making threats against me. I don’t want to keep his name.
I have this son. I will always have this part of him that’s going to be around. Other than that I don’t want to keep anything from that relationship.
I haven’t talked to my son about it. I will eventually. My gut feeling is that he wouldn’t care either way but I don’t know that for sure. Ironically, my son’s last name was actually mine when he was first born because his dad and I weren’t married.
The Divorce Coach Says
I’ve written a number of posts about changing your name after divorce. From me, it was a no-brainer and if you go to that post you’ll find links to all the related posts … keeping your married name, changing your name later, changing your child’s name, hyphenating your child’s name …
It is much easier to change your name as part of the divorce process than to change it later. I recommend that you think through the issue and what it means to your specific situation so when your attorney asks you, you are prepared with your answer and you’re not blindsided.
Don’t like your maiden name? Not a problem, as far as I know U.S. law is not specific on which name you choose. You are not required to revert to your maiden name. If you prefer your grandmother’s or your mother’s maiden name or you have a special closeness to an aunt and you like her name or want to honor her, check with your attorney about using that name. And men … again, as far as I know, U.S. law is not restricted to women so if you want to change your name, this may be your chance.
One more thing … your STBX can’t force you to change your name. The choice is yours.
Have you or will you change your name and why? What name will you chose?
Donna blogs about her journey at Elf Lady’s Chronicles including this fabulous post about facing your fears. The exercise that Donna went through here is an excellent one you can do yourself if you’re contemplating divorce but are afraid.