Considering legally changing my surname

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Alter-eg0

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Considering legally changing my surname
« on: January 30, 2021, 04:25:11 PM »
A little over a year ago, I went no contact with my narc father.
My parents divorced not long before that, and my mother took her maiden-name back.

Pretty much ever since I cut my dad out of my life, I've been toying with the idea of legally having my surname changed to my mothers name.
I let the thought go, in part because it's a hassle and very expensive, and because I didn't want to act on a whim. But the though still lingers, and it's actually getting stronger.

I don't want his name anymore. Getting it changed, would be like a symbolic step towards freedom and being myself. Somehow, having his name still sort of feels like i'm his property.
And me having his name is one thing, but the thought of my future children automatically recieving his name although he did nothing to deserve it, that just pisses me off.

I don't want it to be a 'revenge' thing or whatever, that's not what it is, although I will admit that there's still quite a bit of anger there.
It feels more like breaking a cycle. My father's father was also a narc, though my father is of the communal sybtype, and my grandfather more malignant. There's probably more family history there that I don't know about, considering these disorders also come out of trauma. To me, it feels like saying, hey, that legacy you gave me, you can have it back. I'm moving forward on my own accord.

Also, I don't want to be linked to my father so easily anymore. My father still uses MY story in his marketing (he's a mental health coach/trainer) to lure in new coaching clients that he can screw over. "Hey, look at me being all vulnerable and relatable and knowledgable because my daughter faught mental health problems, so trust me, I know what i'm talking about, I can help you". I don't want to be a part of this, I don't want to be linked to this, and especially: when the * hits the fan one day and poeple find out who he really is, I don't want any part in it.

The main reason that I haven't done it yet, it because it's so damn expensive (where i'm from anyway). I meet all the criteria to have it changed, but I don't meet the criteria for having it done for free. It's a big step, but somehow, the more I think about it, the more relieved I feel. I want to get it done before I have children, so that they will automatically recieve my new name.

Incidentally, my mum's name is also a lot nicer than my dad's, haha.

Anyone recognise this?
And anyone gone through the process?


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Snookiebookie2

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2021, 05:16:50 PM »
I totally relate. I changed my surname.

I did it partly because my father was violent and he didn't know where I was living.   I was convinced he'd search for me, and a change of surname would help me hide.

I also added a middle name.  It was a new beginning and a new me. 

I have since gotten married and have a different surname as a result.

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saylor

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #2 on: January 30, 2021, 05:33:29 PM »
I can totally understand your reasoning, and given the special circumstances that you explained in your own situation, Iíd probably end up doing it if it wasnít tooooo cost-prohibitive

I also strongly dislike my surname, partly because of my F, and partly for a few other reasons.  Even when I wedded, though, I elected not to change it due to concerns about hassle, and also because I donít subscribe to the sentiment behind that tradition (much as Iíd have loved to dump my birth affiliation). Also, in more recent times, from a professional standpoint, Iíve realized that itís important to me to maintain name continuity. So I still have that surname that Iíve always so disliked...

However, I stopped going by my first name way back in my 20s, and instead go by a diminutive of my middle name (I didnít do this legally, though). Supposedly my F had given me my first name, and he almost always yelled it at me because he was so often angry (itís a punchy-sounding name, which made things even worse). I developed a trigger of sorts and didnít want to keep using that awful name anymore. So, I guess that was my own way of informally/cheaply/low-hassle disowning part of my Fís stank  :bigwink:

I didnít realize the cost of a legal name change could depend upon your reasons/circumstances, because I never looked into it. Thatís kinda lame, and pretty unfortunate, given your situation

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deepbreaths

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2021, 09:07:02 PM »
I legally changed my surname when I was 18 to take my mother's maiden name (which also was my grandmother's name who I was very close to). I have been very glad for it, it felt like a powerful way of claiming a new way forward in life that didn't have to be defined by my F. I feel a lot more confident introducing myself that way, and I celebrate it every year, bigger than my birthday even.

But I understand that it can be costly and time consuming. I was young enough that I didn't have too many accounts and things that needed changing and all of my professional work is under my current name.

I hope you are able to find a choice that feels good for you.

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Bermuda

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #4 on: February 14, 2021, 11:42:49 AM »
I can very much relate to your sentiment of not wanting to be a part of that story. I went though something similar. I also changed my last name for partly a similar reason nearly 10 years ago. It was a great idea, and really helped me to feel distanced from *those things*. I am also waiting to be able to change my full name, again. I have only seen positives from changing my last name.

 :Idunno:

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CactusFlower

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2021, 06:45:06 PM »
I legally changed my surname at 19 (as soon as I had the money, basically). I chose my own last name and didn't want the associations and baggage that came with hearing his last name tied to mine anymore.  While my mom never changed her name back after the divorce, she had no issues with me changing my name. 3 days of an ad in the paper, $75 and a bunch of forms, and 2 minutes telling a judge I wasn't doing it to get away from bill collectors and I was... reborn.(it was cheap in 1989).

Funny enough, I ran two astrological charts once, one for my old (legal and real) DOB, and one using my new name and the date/time I changed it.  The second (I don't put much stock in them, but they're fun) was actually far more accurate to my personality and predicted more success in life.

Sage

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Alter-eg0

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2021, 03:36:34 PM »
Work in progress!
I feel relieved already, just having started the process. Since i'm getting my name changed on the basis of psychological hinderance, I needed to get a report from an independent psychotherapist. I found one who specalises in this kind of thing, and who has a 100% succes rate to date. Spoke to her on monday, it was a good conversation, and I decided to go through with it. So I payed her, and now she's writing up the report. It's expensive, but if i'm gonna do this, I want to do it right and get it over with in 1 go.
She'll be giving me the report within 2 weeks, and then i'm going to officially file the request. That should take between 4 and 6 months, and i'm hoping the whole thing will be over before the end of the summer (in case I get a new teaching job, i'd like for my students to use my new name, hehe). I've already made a new google account with my new name, although I won't start officially using it until this is all taken care of. But I feel good about it, I'm hopeful.

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Not Alone

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2021, 03:53:32 AM »
 :thumbup: :applause:

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Jazzy

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Re: Considering legally changing my surname
« Reply #8 on: March 07, 2021, 04:52:11 AM »
Good for you on getting started with the process!  :applause:

I changed my name as well, some years ago. I didn't change my surname though, because most of my F's family are good people, and I always wished I was closer to them than I was allowed to be when I was younger. I did change my first name, and my middle name (which is F's first name), as that is what felt to me like the direct link to my parents. Changing it was a way for me to identify as who I want to be, and not who they made me.

The process was pretty simple, at least for me. I just filled out and submitted the form, along with payment, and got a new birth certificate and change of name certificate back in the mail. It was a little bit more effort to update my identification, and all the accounts I have open, but even that wasn't too bad. It also was rather expensive for me, but I don't regret spending that money at all. The only thing that caught me off-guard a bit was when people asked why I changed it. So, you might want to have an answer ready for that (one you're comfortable sharing with whomever may ask).

Congratulations on getting started, again. I'm excited for you! :)