when Ben and I first became engaged I immediately assumed I would take his last name…#GoingGill was not just a wedding hashtag to me. it was actually going to happen! Ben, on the other hand, made it a discussion, and instead of simply assuming I would do it, he asked if I wanted to take his last name. isn’t he the best?
the discussion was short and sweet.
Ben: do you want to change your last name?
me: yeah! *millions of dancing girl emjos floating through my brain*
Ben: okay, I just wasn’t sure if it was something you’d want to do, and I’m fine either way
me: nope, pretty sure I want to change it
end of discussion.
the feminist objection doesn’t resonate with me.
my thought is this: I should never be made to feel “un-feminist” about changing my name. but instead knowing that the power of it being MY choice and no one else’s, makes it a feminist choice for me. transcending the traditional thoughts on what is considered “feminist” or “un-feminist” is exactly where I want to be. what’s good for me might not be what’s good for someone else, and that’s okay. let’s build each other up and celebrate our choices instead being critical about what someone chooses to do. it also doesn’t hurt that I love a good alliteration and #GoingGill has been stuck in my head for 11ish months now.
for me, sharing the same last name as Ben and knowing our children will also share the same last name adds another level of connection for our family. I’ve read many articles about changing last names after marriage and I see both sides. I know that for some people they have a strong identity tied to their last name, but that has never been the case for me. it also is not important for me to professionally keep my current last name, in fact it might be a relief that some of the textbooks floating around with “Becca Dargatz” in them cannot immediately be tied back to me. special shout-out to students that have to suffer through copyediting I did from my couch.
my last name is not who I am. but I can totally see how after years of marriage that I could potentially identify more with “Gill.” it would be super weird if I didn’t change or grow anymore as a person once I’m married to Ben, and I like the idea of having a new identity tied to this stage in life. even though it doesn’t take a name change to make a couple a team, it feels like a natural bond I’ll share with Ben and I’m all about it.
the best part about all of this is that there isn’t a right way to do things anymore. I’m #GoingGill in 51 days!