Over the last couple of years, a number of people have asked me, in a rhetorical tone, whether I was going to change my name when I got divorced.
I have to say that it hadn’t even occurred to me until they brought up the subject. And it really took me aback.
Firstly, I was surprised that I hadn’t even thought about it, and secondly, I was amazed that they seemed to think it was a matter of course that I would do so.
I had no issue with changing my name when I got married. As far as I was concerned, I was forming a life-long partnership, we planned to have children and share our lives. Therefore, it seemed appropriate to share the same surname.
I am now no longer married – so it would make logical sense to revert to my maiden name. But, I have no wish to do so. And I find it odd that people should think that my identity is impaired by retaining my ex-husbands’ surname.
We are all the sum of our parts. And the most significant part of my life has been my marriage and children. To me, a change of name would be like trying to erase the time spent in my marriage. It suggests regret – and I don’t regret my marriage. What I regret is that it failed. But it did leave me with two wonderful children, who share not only my genes but my name and their fathers.
I almost find it sad that some women go to the trouble of a Deed Poll application, as if trying to eradicate all trace of their past.
I have no wish to eradicate mine. I wish it could have turned out differently, but life happens to us all.