Wedding Customs & Traditions Forum

Mrs. or Ms.?

KatieinBklnKatieinBkln (NO SLEEP TIL) Brooklyn! member
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I have finally decided that I'm going to keep my last name, and I am curious--for those of you who kept your maiden names, do you go by Mrs. MaidenName, Ms. MaidenName, or something else?

I don't know if there are "rules" on this. It might feel odd to be called the same thing as my mother (Mrs. Myname), but I can see wanting to "advertise" that I'm married without having to spell it out all the time, and it seems like "Mrs." is pretty damn good shorthand.

What have you all done/plan to do?
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Re: Mrs. or Ms.?

  • VulgarGirlVulgarGirl Desert Oasis member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Anniversary Name Dropper
    I swap between Ms., Mrs. and Dr. I usually go with Ms. because it's what I was used to and used for a long time. And when I use Dr. people want to show me weird rashes on their bodies (not that kind of doctor, and I'm pretty sure that's a bullet wound so maybe the ER?). Ms. is just easier.

    Wifey took my last name, but she uses Ms. and Mrs. interchangeably. Before we got married she was firm that she was Ms. And now she's all "Mrs. is so pretty!!!", so whatever. 
  • flantasticflantastic The Midwest member
    Ninth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    I have finally decided that I'm going to keep my last name, and I am curious--for those of you who kept your maiden names, do you go by Mrs. MaidenName, Ms. MaidenName, or something else?


    I don't know if there are "rules" on this. It might feel odd to be called the same thing as my mother (Mrs. Myname), but I can see wanting to "advertise" that I'm married without having to spell it out all the time, and it seems like "Mrs." is pretty damn good shorthand.

    What have you all done/plan to do?



    I think technically the purpose of the Mrs. title anyway is to indicate that you are Mrs. H (and therefore H's name, not just that you're married. I believe Mrs. Katie H'sName is even incorrect for that reason, even if Katie H'sName was going to be your name... although obviously plenty of people use that form.

    I've never seen anyone who kept their maiden name go by anything other than Ms. when talking solely about themselves and not as part of the social unit of Mr. & Mrs. H'sName. But I don't think people will be super confused at this point by any use of Mrs. Katie MaidenName, or at least not any more confused than schools and whatnot usually get by parents keeping their maiden name.

  • KatieinBklnKatieinBkln (NO SLEEP TIL) Brooklyn! member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer First Anniversary

    I have finally decided that I'm going to keep my last name, and I am curious--for those of you who kept your maiden names, do you go by Mrs. MaidenName, Ms. MaidenName, or something else?


    I don't know if there are "rules" on this. It might feel odd to be called the same thing as my mother (Mrs. Myname), but I can see wanting to "advertise" that I'm married without having to spell it out all the time, and it seems like "Mrs." is pretty damn good shorthand.

    What have you all done/plan to do?



    I think technically the purpose of the Mrs. title anyway is to indicate that you are Mrs. H (and therefore H's name, not just that you're married. I believe Mrs. Katie H'sName is even incorrect for that reason, even if Katie H'sName was going to be your name... although obviously plenty of people use that form.

    I've never seen anyone who kept their maiden name go by anything other than Ms. when talking solely about themselves and not as part of the social unit of Mr. & Mrs. H'sName. But I don't think people will be super confused at this point by any use of Mrs. Katie MaidenName, or at least not any more confused than schools and whatnot usually get by parents keeping their maiden name.

    Oh right--I know for "title" purposes it's technically Mrs. HisFirst HisLast (Mrs. John Smith is Jenny Smith, John's wife). I just mean for daily life, like when someone wants to call me Mrs. MyLast (vs. Ms MyLast), without my first name in the picture.

    Interesting to hear people roll with "Ms." when they keep their name--I don't totally care either way. I'm attached to my name, but not my "Ms-ness," if that makes any sense.
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  • chibiyuichibiyui The Boring Part of MD member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    I use Mrs. And Ms. interchangeably. I took H's last name, and if given the choice identify myself as Ms. but I don't correct people if they use Mrs.
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  • Mrs isn't supposed to be used unless you take your DH's last name. It's a title that basically says, "I'm Mrs. John Smith.". CMGr GBCK'd but she could probably explain it better than me.

    Anyway, if you keep your last name, you're a Ms. I kept my last name, so I go by Ms. MaidenName. 
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  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers

    Mrs isn't supposed to be used unless you take your DH's last name. It's a title that basically says, "I'm Mrs. John Smith.". CMGr GBCK'd but she could probably explain it better than me.


    Anyway, if you keep your last name, you're a Ms. I kept my last name, so I go by Ms. MaidenName. 
    @southernbelle0915 - What?  Again?  When?  Why?  And now I am done asking one word questions.

    mrscomposerashley8918
  • VulgarGirlVulgarGirl Desert Oasis member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Anniversary Name Dropper

    Mrs isn't supposed to be used unless you take your DH's last name. It's a title that basically says, "I'm Mrs. John Smith.". CMGr GBCK'd but she could probably explain it better than me.


    Anyway, if you keep your last name, you're a Ms. I kept my last name, so I go by Ms. MaidenName. 
    So...would Wifey then be Mrs because she took my last name or is she Ms. because I'm not a husband? And what if the husband takes the wife's last name? Is she still Mrs? 
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Do people often use a title when they talk to you in person?  Meaning people on a regular basis not just a telemarketer calling you up and saying "Ms. Soandso would you like a subscription to our newspaper."

    Because for me, no one in my daily life ever uses a title when talking to me.  But then again, I kind of don't give a crap if they use the proper title that corresponds to my name (I changed my last name by the way).  Ms.  Mrs.  Whatever, just don't call me late for dinner.

  • MagicInk said:

    I swap between Ms., Mrs. and Dr. I usually go with Ms. because it's what I was used to and used for a long time. And when I use Dr. people want to show me weird rashes on their bodies (not that kind of doctor, and I'm pretty sure that's a bullet wound so maybe the ER?). Ms. is just easier.


    Wifey took my last name, but she uses Ms. and Mrs. interchangeably. Before we got married she was firm that she was Ms. And now she's all "Mrs. is so pretty!!!", so whatever. 
    I just think this is so sweet!

    Mrs./Ms. is flat-out a personal choice and obviously one that can change back and forth as preferences come and go.

    Widows often (but not always) choose to go by Mrs., but that's not a rule. As mentioned above, if one chooses not to take her spouse's name, a wife might go by Ms., but that's not a rule either, technically. Some women keep their name legally/professionally but go by Mrs. H'sLast socially.

    So basically, whatever the fuck you wanna do. Ha.
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  • MagicInk said:

    Mrs isn't supposed to be used unless you take your DH's last name. It's a title that basically says, "I'm Mrs. John Smith.". CMGr GBCK'd but she could probably explain it better than me.


    Anyway, if you keep your last name, you're a Ms. I kept my last name, so I go by Ms. MaidenName. 
    So...would Wifey then be Mrs because she took my last name or is she Ms. because I'm not a husband? And what if the husband takes the wife's last name? Is she still Mrs? 
    I don't really think the patriarchal tradition of taking a man's last name and the resulting title of Mrs. John Smith can easily be extrapolated to modern (gender equal and not just male/female) marriages. The tradition comes from women being property and their title changing when they were married off to a man.

    You don't see men's "titles" changing just because they get married. It's not like they're Mr. when they're single and Mrs (or whatever) when they get married. Why should it be different for women? IMHO it shouldn't. But that's not an opinion everyone shares. In fact some people "can't wait to be a Mrs!!!!" so its different for everyone..
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    esstee33Blue_Bird
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    I prefer Ms. But then, I rarely get addressed by a title in any case other than professional. In the professional context, I don't think my marital status is relevant.

    Socially, I'm just happy if I get addressed by the correct name. Several of my friends insist on addressing me by H's name, despite several corrections.

  • edited March 2015

    Mrs isn't supposed to be used unless you take your DH's last name. It's a title that basically says, "I'm Mrs. John Smith.". CMGr GBCK'd but she could probably explain it better than me.


    Anyway, if you keep your last name, you're a Ms. I kept my last name, so I go by Ms. MaidenName. 
    @southernbelle0915 - What?  Again?  When?  Why?  And now I am done asking one word questions.
    Yep. My understanding is that she has stopped posting...maybe not GBCKd. In that thread in CC where she said she didn't trust Ulta employees, shit hitting the fan about that and other historical things and she hasn't been back (I don't think...).

    ETA words
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    CMGragain
  • I'm Ms. Maiden at work (randomly formal emails/paperwork) and on papers that matter. Mrs. Married anywhere socially. I didn't change it, but don't mind carrying H's name because I honestly just don't care. It's a name. H actually got called Mr. Maiden recently which was weird to hear.

    From my understanding, Mrs. is a contraction/abbreviation of mistress. Originally used for both married and unmarried women. Eventually it got split into miss (Miss/Ms.)and mistress (Mrs.). So either you go modern with Ms. Maiden or you go super old school with Mrs. Maiden. Though people might confuse your H as Mr. Maiden if you use Mrs. Maiden.  But if you guys don't care, go for whatever works for you.

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  • KatieinBklnKatieinBkln (NO SLEEP TIL) Brooklyn! member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer First Anniversary

    Do people often use a title when they talk to you in person?  Meaning people on a regular basis not just a telemarketer calling you up and saying "Ms. Soandso would you like a subscription to our newspaper."


    Because for me, no one in my daily life ever uses a title when talking to me.  But then again, I kind of don't give a crap if they use the proper title that corresponds to my name (I changed my last name by the way).  Ms.  Mrs.  Whatever, just don't call me late for dinner.
    I mean, hardly ever! I'm mainly just curious. I assume being addressed by a title will happen much more often when I have kids (I seem to remember teachers/other adults calling my mom "Mrs. Lastname" all the time, and we kids certainly called every adult around us Mr./Mrs./Ms. So-and-So). I don't think I will care if someone gets it "wrong." I don't even think I'll care if people want to call me Mrs. HisLast socially. I just don't want to change it legally, and I'm curious what I will put on government forms/stupid website sign-ups.
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  • I go my Ms. although on a lot of mail from businesses I still get Miss. I can't wait to finish my PhD and go by Dr
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    KatieinBkln
  • I go by Ms. MaidenName now and that's how I plan on staying. I think it's ridiculous that women have a salutation that denotes their marital status and men don't, so I wouldn't plan on participating in the custom (probably also why I'm not changing my name...)
    MyNameIsNotphotokittysouthernbelle0915huskypuppy14
  • photokittyphotokitty where I want to be mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its

    I go by Ms. MaidenName now and that's how I plan on staying. I think it's ridiculous that women have a salutation that denotes their marital status and men don't, so I wouldn't plan on participating in the custom (probably also why I'm not changing my name...)

    Ditto this.
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • amelishaamelisha Canadian Texas member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer Name Dropper
    edited March 2015
    I also think that tradition here doesn't really matter and that you should feel free to choose whatever name and title (well, maybe not honourifics like Dr. or Hon. if you haven't earned them...) you feel comfortable with. I wouldn't put too much weight on "tradition" on something like this that affects no one but you and is therefore a totally personal choice.

    The thing that someone else mentioned, though, about going by Mrs. Maidenname and then having people think that your DH is Mr. Maidenname could become something of a nuisance. However, if you're keeping your maiden name that stuff is going to happen anyway, and it's really not more than the most minor irritation, anyway.

    I'm changing my name so I don't have any personal anecdotes, but I did want to mention that I find that in the workplace, hardly anyone I know under the age of 50 uses "Mrs." Socially, it's a bit different, but I find that most of my female colleagues just stick with "Ms." regardless of surname because it's really no one's business in the office whether they're married or not. I plan to do the same even with my married last name - Ms. at work and Mrs. on the rare occasion I use a title socially.

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  • I go by Ms. Maidenname. I am a teacher, so we have to go by last names. I wrote my last name all over everything before I got married. Hundreds of books have my name written on them in my classroom. I chose to keep my name, but I may hyphenate it down the road. I don't correct people who say "Mrs. Maidenname" to me, but I don't use it myself.
  • IrishPirate60IrishPirate60 Clare Island member
    Seventh Anniversary 250 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    When I taught in New Orleans back in the day, I was Ms. LastName in the classroom, Ms. O at activities, and Miss FirstName to the children of friends.
  • huskypuppy14huskypuppy14 Boston Suburbs member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    I go by Ms. Maiden name. However, there were some forms (cookware warranty info) that didn't have Ms. as an option, so I put Mrs. Whatever. I don't really care what title people use. 

    Funny story: We enrolled our dog in doggy daycare. The other day was his first day, and I filled out all the forms so everything is under my name (husband is on it too, but I'm the main contact). When my husband went to pick up the dog, they asked his last name and he said Smith. They looked it up and they said, you mean Clark? So our dog has my last name.. ha ha. 

    @Southernbelle0915 have you decided what last name your child will have?
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  • @huskypuppy14 - we'll be hyphenating the kid's name. MyLast-HisLast

    DH recently mentioned wanting to hyphenate our names too, so that we both have the same last name as the kid. That was a big surprise to me since he's been really anti-change from the beginning. I kind of doubt he'll end up doing it when push comes to shove.
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  • KatieinBklnKatieinBkln (NO SLEEP TIL) Brooklyn! member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer First Anniversary

    I go by Ms. Maiden name. However, there were some forms (cookware warranty info) that didn't have Ms. as an option, so I put Mrs. Whatever. I don't really care what title people use. 


    Funny story: We enrolled our dog in doggy daycare. The other day was his first day, and I filled out all the forms so everything is under my name (husband is on it too, but I'm the main contact). When my husband went to pick up the dog, they asked his last name and he said Smith. They looked it up and they said, you mean Clark? So our dog has my last name.. ha ha. 

    @Southernbelle0915 have you decided what last name your child will have?
    Our dog has my last name, too!

    Our kids will have FI's name. I have always been on the record as not giving a shit about the patrilineal nature of our society; just the patriarchal. Plus FI's name is unique (spelling fuckup at Ellis Island) so having his name ensures the world's easiest genealogy chain for the future.
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  • photokittyphotokitty where I want to be mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its

    I go by Ms. Maiden name. However, there were some forms (cookware warranty info) that didn't have Ms. as an option, so I put Mrs. Whatever. I don't really care what title people use. 


    Funny story: We enrolled our dog in doggy daycare. The other day was his first day, and I filled out all the forms so everything is under my name (husband is on it too, but I'm the main contact). When my husband went to pick up the dog, they asked his last name and he said Smith. They looked it up and they said, you mean Clark? So our dog has my last name.. ha ha. 

    @Southernbelle0915 have you decided what last name your child will have?
    Our dog has my last name, too!

    Our kids will have FI's name. I have always been on the record as not giving a shit about the patrilineal nature of our society; just the patriarchal. Plus FI's name is unique (spelling fuckup at Ellis Island) so having his name ensures the world's easiest genealogy chain for the future.
    I'm thinking of given any future kids my last name as their middle name and DH's last name. Hyphenating would make for a cumbersome last name in our case.
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • huskypuppy14huskypuppy14 Boston Suburbs member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer

    I go by Ms. Maiden name. However, there were some forms (cookware warranty info) that didn't have Ms. as an option, so I put Mrs. Whatever. I don't really care what title people use. 


    Funny story: We enrolled our dog in doggy daycare. The other day was his first day, and I filled out all the forms so everything is under my name (husband is on it too, but I'm the main contact). When my husband went to pick up the dog, they asked his last name and he said Smith. They looked it up and they said, you mean Clark? So our dog has my last name.. ha ha. 

    @Southernbelle0915 have you decided what last name your child will have?
    Our dog has my last name, too!

    Our kids will have FI's name. I have always been on the record as not giving a shit about the patrilineal nature of our society; just the patriarchal. Plus FI's name is unique (spelling fuckup at Ellis Island) so having his name ensures the world's easiest genealogy chain for the future.
    I'm thinking of given any future kids my last name as their middle name and DH's last name. Hyphenating would make for a cumbersome last name in our case.
    Ditto. Hyphenating is out of the question because it would be a 20 letter last name. Nope, not going to happen.
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  • Ugh, I did so much research on this topic before we got married (I kept my last name). If I remember correctly, "etiquette" dictates that if you keep your last name then you go by "Ms". As for personal preference...it just annoys me that there's "etiquette" surrounding this (as opposed to personal choice) and also that women have titles that denote marital status. 

    I don't think I've ever introduced myself with a title, or written it or anything. I've been called both. I don't really care one way or the other, so I also don't correct people.
  • jenna8984jenna8984 clam bakes & patriots member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer

    Do people often use a title when they talk to you in person?  Meaning people on a regular basis not just a telemarketer calling you up and saying "Ms. Soandso would you like a subscription to our newspaper."


    Because for me, no one in my daily life ever uses a title when talking to me.  But then again, I kind of don't give a crap if they use the proper title that corresponds to my name (I changed my last name by the way).  Ms.  Mrs.  Whatever, just don't call me late for dinner.
    Completely agree with @maggie0829. I've been married 6 months now and no one has ever called me Mrs. or Ms. They just call me by my first name. Or if I'm checking into a hotel or something, they call me ma'am.

                                                                     

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