Single Parents

Last name advice

Not with the father even though he really does want to be involved with the baby.  I'm worrying about later on what may or may not happen with custody and child support and so on. One of my concerns is the last name. I know its really gonna hurt the father if it is not his but I hate the idea of my child having his last name. So my last name or his? Any opinions? Also if custody does become an issue is it better for the baby to have my name? Kind of wishing he just didn't want to be involved.

Re: Last name advice

  • Give the baby your last name!!! Don't even hesitate... I gave my LO my last name and I'm still soo happy that I did it. And, didn't listen to anyone including my EX. It's the ONE thing that I got to choose and no one else had a say no matter what!!!! I also didn't want my baby to have a different last name from me.
  • I was too young to know any better when I went to court for DD. they told me she would be better having her father's last name and encouraged me to make it that way. So, I have a court order making her last name his. But, I never did it. Truthfully, I think it's better for LO to have the same last name as Mom. It's your choice, but both my kids will have my last name.
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  • while i do also agree that baby should have mom's last name (my DD does), if the dad is open & willing to being involved & both last names aren't 7000 letters long, I think you should meet him in the middle and hyphenate. You can put your last name first - his last name. THEN in the future if he does disappear or something, you'll still have your last name as represented and in day to day usage you can just drop his last name (you'll only have to put both names when filling out legal documents). Another option is to make the dad's last name as the second middle name or something so that he can still have some sort of family representation.

    I'm adding DD's dad's last name, so she'll have a hyphenated name. We agreed to it while pregnant but we got into a huge argument at the hospital so out of spite, I dropped the hyphen.

    For the record, it doesn't matter what the kid's name is for custody/child support (usually). You'd have to check your individual state laws.

     Ultimately, it's your choice. Just know if you do decide to give LO your last name, he IS going to make a big stink about it. He's going to say lots of hurtful things about you and possibly about LO. But stay strong and stand your ground. You have to do what's best for you & LO.

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  • If the two of you aren't together, give her your last name.  You will most likely be the one with primary custody who takes your LO to school, the doctor, etc and it will be easier if you both have the same last name.

    DD has my last name and I wouldn't have it any other way.

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  • I'm not a single parent, but I was raised by one.  (I popped on this board by mistake and read this post before I realized, but thought I could offer some input).

    I had my mother's last name growing up.  My father was around for a short time after I was born, disappeared until I was almost 5, and dropped back out of my life when I was 12.  I liked having my mom's last name.  One because I was angry with him and not having his last name made letting him go easier if that makes sense?  Two, my dad had a huge family with a bad reputation so not having the last name was better for me growing up in the same area.

    During the time when my father was involved, I loved him to death, and I was sometimes confused by why I had my mom's name and not his.  And it made things really confusing when my mom remarried and I had neither of their last name's anymore.  Other than those few awkward moments trying to explain it to people, I'm glad I had her name.

    P.S.  My H has his mother's maiden name as well.  His father has never been involved in his life.  I thought it was kind of interesting that we both had that to share.

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  • image mdotm0904:

    while i do also agree that baby should have mom's last name (my DD does), if the dad is open & willing to being involved & both last names aren't 7000 letters long, I think you should meet him in the middle and hyphenate. You can put your last name first - his last name. THEN in the future if he does disappear or something, you'll still have your last name as represented and in day to day usage you can just drop his last name (you'll only have to put both names when filling out legal documents). Another option is to make the dad's last name as the second middle name or something so that he can still have some sort of family representation.

    ^^ Yes!!  I think hyphenating is the best route.  That way your child will grow up knowing they are a part of BOTH families.  You can send out Holiday cards from the _____ Family and your ex can do cards from the ______ Family.  My bonus daughter's last name is hyphenated since my husband and her mother were never married, and it's helped tremendously.  There is no confusion at school when my husband picks her up or when her mother picks her up since LO has both of their last names.

    Good luck!!

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  • image cherefe1771:
    Not with the father even though he really does want to be involved with the baby.  I'm worrying about later on what may or may not happen with custody and child support and so on. One of my concerns is the last name. I know its really gonna hurt the father if it is not his but I hate the idea of my child having his last name. So my last name or his? Any opinions? Also if custody does become an issue is it better for the baby to have my name? Kind of wishing he just didn't want to be involved.

     I would give the child your name. No question, no hesitation.

    It might seem easy for you now if he wasn't involved but if he is a good guy and capable of being a good father it's so much better for the child to have both parents.  I have been raising kids alone for over 10 years and the suffering caused by an absent father who just choose not to be part of their lives is huge. (although in my case the guy was not a great guy/father figure/normal person)

  • You need to check your state laws on this. Some states will CO the last name to be changed once paternity is established and they will order the birth certificate to be changed to reflect this.
    ~Amy
  •  The last name of your child should be the primary caregiver's name. If that is you, then the baby should have your last name. That way the primary doesn't have to prove they are the parent of the child in regards to medical issues, school, etc. And the child will be living with the primary, and won't have the confusion when they are older as to why they aren't the same.

     If the father is involved, that's great. But he shouldn't be "rewarded" with the child having his name. Being involved should be what he does, no matter what. Remember that it's easy to Add his name later, if you want. But to change is a nightmare if you decide you want to change it entirely.

  • I'm in the same boat. The father and I discussed names and I told him baby could have his last name. We're working on our relationship but honestly, I know deep down it won't last. But we have a really good relationship. He lives almost 2 hours away and I know I'll have baby more. But now I want baby to have my last name and I don't know how to bring it up to him since he already feels so left out. 

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    BEAN *06/29/2012*

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