Is keeping your maiden name at work right for you?

woman at work at her desk holding a mug of coffee

NameSwitch shares its advice on the dilemma that many women face in the workplace, and that's whether to keep your maiden name?

The process of getting married comes with a million personal choices to be made along the way – do you want a big white dress or something more minimal? Do you want a DJ at your celebration or a live band? Do you want to keep your maiden name or embrace your married one? Each choice is personal and unique and there is no one-size-fits-all answer.


Even when it comes to something as momentous as what name you'll be known by for the rest of your life, there are different options and choices to be made. And just like decisions about what kind of dress to buy, the choices you make about your name will also be influenced by your personal preferences and life experiences.

For some brides keeping their husband's name and becoming a team in name and marriage is a straightforward decision. But for plenty of others it's more complicated. With the average age for brides continually rising, it's increasingly likely that you'll have built up a professional reputation, client base or network who know you by your maiden name, and you might be keen to maintain continuity professionally. If you've published anything, for example, changing your name will distance you from your previous work. But what if you also like the idea of having the same name as your partner and, potentially, children when you're at home?

An Impossible Quandary
It might sound like an impossible quandary, but the answer could be keeping one name professionally and another for your home-life. It's not a solution that suits everyone – you'll need to be able and willing to differentiate between your professional life and your married life, and that's not always easy to do – but for some brides it's the ideal choice.

Changing to your married name in your personal life and keeping your maiden name in your professional life is a perfectly legal and valid option when it comes to deciding on what you will be known as after marriage.

By keeping your maiden name professionally, you don't have to worry about confusing clients or your professional network about your name change. There are no awkward, incorrect introductions at networking events, no need to change business cards and you'll avoid the faff of informing all of your clients of your new name. You can keep the professional reputation you have built up without causing confusion. This option is particularly popular with Lawyers, Doctors and other professionals who opt to either keep their maiden name professionally or double-barrel, which is another option to consider.

If you think you have the right personality type to be able to differentiate between the two different names, then this could offer you the best of both worlds. You can be Miss "Maiden" in the office and Mrs "New" everywhere else. It is a very personal and symbolic way to honour both your life prior to marriage and your life as a married person.

Read the full article on the NameSwitch website here.

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