Hyphenating My Name

Like all engaged women, I thought long and hard about my name after marriage. Would I change it?

There are a few things that have certainly influenced my decision to not change my name. First of all, my culture. I’m half Cuban, half Puerto Rican and in our cultures women usually keep their maiden names when they wed. My mother changed her name only because of a troublesome relationship with her father, it was a personal decision for her. My mother-in-law on the other hand, has kept her maiden name.

Having grown up between Puerto Rico and Florida also exposed me to American cultural norms and how most women change their names when they marry. I thought long and hard about this. I love the idea of everyone in a family sharing the same last name but I also feel that my maiden name is part of who I am, it’s my identity.

So, I’m choosing the best of both worlds. I’m hyphenating my name, yay!

Last week I was talking to a friend who already lives in the mainland (Raleigh, NC) and she had changed her name. She mentioned that it was less common, at least in her area in NC, but that the process was just as hideous, ha! Thanks for the support, Monica.

Back to hyphenation. My reason is that it’s the best of both my worlds. I get to keep my maiden name which I love and has been my identity for 25 years of my life, it’s my father’s last name (I’m a total daddy’s girl!) and it’s the name on all of my diplomas and academic documents. I’ve always pictured being called “Dr. C….” in the future, tee-hee. However, hyphenating will also allow my to share the rest of my family’s last name, which will be specially important when we have kids. This way we can all some way be “The Padillas”.

That’s it for today. I know it’s a short and sweet post, I’ve just been wanting to share this for a while. I’m going to wait until we’re living in Connecticut to go through with all the paperwork as I assume part of it may be easier than doing it in PR. So, only a couple of weeks to go until the big name change. 🙂

Did you change your name when you got married? Did you consider hyphenating?



P.S. Here on my blog and social media I use Ana Padilla (my husband’s last name) because I work in the mental health field and it’s important to me to prevent patients and such trying to contact me via the internet. It avoids a very uncomfortable ethics related conversation that potentially harms the therapist-patient alliance.



This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.