During my engagement to now husband, many people asked if I would be changing my name, and when, without hesitation, I would answer with a simple “yes”, some would look at me as if I was the queen of anti-feminism.
In these modern times, and in the country I live in, it is perfectly acceptable to conjoin our two surnames or even to not change my name at all. There is no fear of being judged a spinster, or as living in sin anymore, as would’ve happened in decades and centuries gone by.
I don’t feel “oppressed” or like I am somebody else’s property by taking his name. It feels right for us as our relationship evolves and develops into its own little family unit. I don’t feel like I am setting back the feminist movement in anyway.
Not that I put much thought into my name change though. In our families it is the done thing. I don’t question it because of the ideals and values I have surrounding marriage and family.
I’m a traditionalist I guess. Old school family values, with the idea of marriage as two people in unity.
I did think about how I would feel in regards to my identity at the thought of changing my surname having forever been a Kingham. When the Caitlyn Jenner Vanity Fair issue was released, I wondered how she felt about Bruce Jenner seemingly ceasing to exist, but now I’ve had a few months to get used to my new name I realise that gender transition is similar in aspects to name change in that the person is evolving rather than simply ceasing to exist. I’m the same person. I still have the same likes and dislikes; the same dreams, the same thoughts and feelings. I’m just a married lady now.
All this said however, I haven’t changed my name on my blog or on the page I have on Facebook.
My maiden name is my heritage and is very close to extinction due to a lack of boys on that side. It has been me for the first 26 years of my life and I don’t want to simply pass over the name and forget it. I feel that to honour my heritage, it would be great to maintain my maiden name through my writing. To have it as my pseudonym so to speak. I’m proud of my roots and want to create some kind of legacy.
So whilst I’m still getting used to being a Mrs Spencer, Kingham will always live on in my writing.