It is widely common for wives to change their last name after wedding to their husband’s and then it goes on to the next generations. This tradition isn’t restricted to one nation or one culture but is widespread all over the world.
How difficult it is to part with your identity? It may not appear that difficult when you are ready to do anything for your husband’s happiness. But in any case, it certainly pinches a bit giving away the name you have been carrying since birth.
Not just the last name, there are cultures where the ‘in-laws’ also get to choose a new first name for the bride signifying her new birth post marriage, beginning of a new life. But does this new beginning is only for the wife? Isn’t it a new chapter in the husband’s life too?
Some decades back, it wasn’t even allowed to keep the ‘maiden’ name as middle name for the wives, even in countries like the United States and the United Kingdom.
Even today, wives who do not change their last name to their husband’s are often judged in some way or the other by family and society.
And then there are husbands like this!
Amidst all these beliefs and practices, there is a culture where husbands openly change their names to their wives’. And in some cases wife’s surname is used by both husband and wife as their middle name and husband’s surname is used as last name. And the same set of middle name and surname goes to the kids unless it is chosen to be changed for some reason.
In Denmark, it is fairly common to see cases like this. If a girl known as Helle Bislev gets married to someone called Martin Rasmussen, it is not surprising to hear the man changing his name to Martin Bislev Rasmussen.
Do you sense equality here? Doesn’t it sound like an ideal situation where none of them feels stripped of their identity.
Well, it should be one’s own choice about what name they would like to carry, it is worth a thought that why don’t we consider bringing equality here and at the least, not force or judge a woman if she chooses not to part with her last name.
It may sound a trivial issue to many but it’s importance can’t be ignored. The emotions of a newly wedded are highly sensitive when she has to go through numerous changes in her life and adapt herself to them and also at the same time, feel herself being forced to give up her identity.
The broadmindedness of Danish men is worth appreciation and deserves to be known all over the world. There are definitely reasons like this that contribute to make it one of the happiest nations of the world.