Why I didn’t change my last name

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According to this article on About.com, “Each year, approximately 3 million women change their name. They give up their maiden names and take their husbands’ surname upon marriage. That’s 90% of women who marry.”

I am not one of those three million. Most of you know me as Aurora Meyer. Meyer is my maiden name and though my married name is different, I still go by Meyer professionally.

There are a myriad of reasons why I chose to keep my maiden name, but the most important is that if you Google my married name very little comes up. My credibility and “brand” are all intrinsically connected to Meyer. I worked hard to build my credibility as a journalist and now as a professional. I wasn’t ready or willing to just toss that all aside and start from scratch.

I’m lucky to have a supportive husband, who doesn’t care what my last name reads on my business card. It helps that he is in a similar business and having a different last name keeps our professional lives separate from each other.

Is this a perfect solution? No. It works for us. I realized that changing my name meant more than However, as more and more women build their identities under their maiden names, making a change can mean losing credibility. At least until Google finds a way to connect new last names to results.

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6 thoughts on “Why I didn’t change my last name

  1. I compromised and am using Traci Koller Mazurek as my professional name, but just going by Traci Mazurek professionally. Like you, my “brand” is connected to my maiden name, and I intend to stick with it – but I love my married name and wanted to use it as well.

    1. Traci,
      I’m thrilled you found a way to combine both names to work for you! My married name is very similar to my maiden name, which is both lucky and confusing to people. I found it is just easier for me to keep it simple.
      I hope you had a relaxing holiday!
      Aurora

  2. Ah, yep, I can see how that’d be confusing if they’re similar! I’ve just changed over my work address to my married name, but if people still use my old email, it’ll redirect over. It’s a fairly seamless transition so far! Hope you had a great holiday as well 🙂

  3. I think it also depends on your age. At 26, probably doesn’t matter. At 46, a woman may have a very established reputation under the birth name. (I hate the term “maiden” name!)

    1. Barbara,
      I see your point and agree. But I also think that today, even at 26, you are expected to have an online presence, which doesn’t follow you to your new name. It’s a difficult choice and one that should not be made lightly. What works for me, might not work for someone else.
      Thank you so much for your comments!
      Aurora

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