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Customs and Traditions

Whether to change name when husband's first name is similar

I have wanted to change my name for as long as I can remember.  It not only repeats two letters (and people love to only write one), but one of them is an "f" which is very frequently confused for an "s," particularly on the phone.  In a way it isn't a huge deal, but at the same time it can be really annoying to have to spend so long spelling my name every time it needs to be spelled.  I've even had a doctor's secretary try to convince me that I wasn't a patient at the practice because she kept spelling my name wrong and couldn't find it in the computer.

Although a name can really be part of someone, I thought for sure that I would want to change my name because of how irritating it is.  But, then I, Christy, got engaged to a Chris.  Has anyone married here married someone with a similar first name?  My thought is that if I keep my last name, we won't be confused.  Or, would we not be anyhow?  I'm ok with giving up that part of my identity (I think), and I'm ok with the fact that I may suffer from the Donna Chang syndrome occasionally (he has an Asian last name, and I'm white).  But, having such similar first names is really what is making me hesitate.  And at this point, I'm completely torn about what to do! 

Re: Whether to change name when husband's first name is similar

  • emmaaaemmaaa North Carolina mod
    Moderator 2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary
    It is ultimately your decision whether or not you feel comfortable changing your name. I will be honest though, I don't think it matters what your last name is, y'alls names are similar regardless. You will always be Chris and Christy (similarly to my friends Kelly and Cale). Your names are already similar even if you keep your last name.

  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    It's your decision, but to me this doesn't seem like a big deal at all.  And I'm not entirely sure why the last name matters if it's the first names that are similar?  


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  • I'm sitting here trying to figure out what your full name is. A long version of Christy that has two "f"s?

    As for people not getting your name on the phone, if it really irks you fine, but it does happen to me, getting a completely different name Alice instead of Alex.
    charlottesmom0626
  • edited January 2015
    I have married friends named Chris and Christa. They work at the same place too. Its a nonissue
  • I'm sitting here trying to figure out what your full name is. A long version of Christy that has two "f"s?

    As for people not getting your name on the phone, if it really irks you fine, but it does happen to me, getting a completely different name Alice instead of Alex.
    Her last name has two F's in it, she's talking about changing her last name to her husband's, not changing her first name.
    esstee33huskypuppy14
  • I'm sitting here trying to figure out what your full name is. A long version of Christy that has two "f"s?

    As for people not getting your name on the phone, if it really irks you fine, but it does happen to me, getting a completely different name Alice instead of Alex.
    Her last name has two F's in it, she's talking about changing her last name to her husband's, not changing her first name.
    Ah, got it. That makes way more sense. Reading is hard.
    libra44423
  • The only thing I could see being a problem is accidentally opening each other's mail, which is a pretty minute issue. It's not like the police will accidentally arrest one of you when there's a warrant for the other.

    H has a cousin Jules who married a Julia. She took his name. No big deal.

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  • It's not that big of a deal.  My friend has the exact same name as her step-son (it's more commonly a female name, but can be unisex).  No one has mistaken a 50 year old woman for a 25 year old man or vice versa.    I also know a Tony and Toni, a Dan and Dani (Danielle), a Nick and Nicki (Nicole), a Kris and Kristy, and an Al and Allie.  It's not that big of a deal.

    That said, as someone with a difficult last name, I also don't think that's that big of a deal either though.  When people ask for it, I just automatically start spelling it and for those difficult letters that can get confused (S's for F's and N's for M's) I just start right off with S as in Sam or N as in Nancy or F as in Frank or M as in Mary.  Since I started doing that, I've never had to repeat myself after the first time.  They still mispronounce the heck out of it, but I don't really care about that.

    So, in summary - do what you like.  It's not that big of a deal either way.
  • NowIamMrsKleinNowIamMrsKlein Cold Canadian North (British Columbia) member
    500 Love Its 500 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
    I know a Danielle and Daniel. I think the only thing that they changed to make it 'easier' is on social media they each had their full name, including middle name, listed as they were getting posts and messages meant for the other person from people who were skimming the names.

    Other than that they don't seem to have any problems, of course they deal with people mentioning how strange it is now and then and that its a bit of a tongue twister saying their names together. 
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  • I know an Alex(andra) who married an Alex(ander), and a Jess who married a Jesse. Alex changed her name, and Jess kept hers. As far as I know, neither of them seemed to consider the similar first names when making the decision. I also know a John who married a Jon. They both kept their names :)

    I don't think you'll get confused for one another if you change your name. You can also always use full names (e.g. Christopher) for formal/business stuff to help clarify. Outside of that setting (where people actually use your last name) you'll always be Chris and Christy.
  • Thanks to everyone for your opinions!  It really was very helpful to hear that people haven't had issues.  I was indeed concerned more with mail being confused, or making appointments at say, doctor's offices since we will have the same address as well.  I suspected it may not really be an issue.  But, I didn't want to have issues, and figure out I was wrong after changing my name!

    And to jacques, you are very lucky that the difficult letters are ok for you.  I am always clear ("f" as in "frank"), but 50% of the time, people still write "s."  They just don't like to listen, I suppose.  Maybe it the double "f."  Whatever the case, it is so frequently an issue.

    Thanks so much again!!!
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    I have a friend Chris who married a Chris.    She always thought she would change because she didn't like her generic common last name.  Well she married a guy with an equally generic common name.  She kept her last name legally and professionally.  

     She socially goes sometimes goes by his last name.   






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • My Parents are Julia and Julian...not much closer to that...andto make matters worse or more complicated they named us all with the letter J...so when we all go to similar doctors it gets a big crazy at time...but hey that is life and makes for fun stories.  I always wished I was marrying someone with  a J to to carry it on but i guess we will find our own tradition name wise
  • My friend actually originally wouldn't go out with her current boyfriend because her name is Jessi and his name is Jesse. Now she's fine with it. 

    For me, I'm keeping my last name, for a totally different reason. For you, decide what you need and what you want, everything else will fall into place. Even if you always thought you wanted to change your name and now you are having second thoughts, that's fine. I think people can roll with it but if it freaks you out then don't do it. (If you are just afraid of other people opinions then screw them.) 
  • esstee33esstee33 Pittsburgh member
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    I know a Chris and Christine, and FI knows an Aaron and Erin. If you want to change your name, go for it! 
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  • stephteddystephteddy member
    5 Love Its First Anniversary First Comment
    edited February 2015
    Growing up, I had married neighbors named Don and Dawn. No joke. They had the same last name as well. I don't think there really was ever confusion issues though!
  • My name is Leigh and my FIs name is Leigh.  (He was born out west where it's not uncommon to see Leigh as a spelling for a guy).  

    I am planning on changing my last name, and I've seriously considered making my first and middle a double first name or something to be different, but I haven't decided.  It was REALLY confusing at first, but now most people call us HeLeigh/SheLeigh or Boy Leigh/ Girl Leigh etc.  I usually just tell people I'm the Mrs. Leigh ;) I haven't found it inconvenient or frustrating because to me it's nifty.  :)
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  • rcher912rcher912 Philadelphia member
    100 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    I think you should change your name and then have twin girls and name them Crystal and Christa.

    Just sayin' ;)
  • MrsMack10612MrsMack10612 The Witch City member
    Ninth Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    My husband and I are Chris & Kristina - I changed my name.  Due to the different spellings we don't run into a lot of problems with mail and legal stuff.  In social settings where I am known as Kris, it get's more confusing, but our friends/family have come up with creative ways of distinguishing us.

     

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