What’s In a Name?

by | May 23, 2011

….A rose by any other word would smell as sweet.

I think I am starting to have name change anxiety.

In less than a month I will be changing my last name to take my husband’s, and that is a crazy thought!

Deen just seems to fit so right with my first name. And it is unique and cultural and fun and all the things that seem to represent me. Also it doesn’t help that my lover happens to have the most complicated last name known to man.

My friend Elina said it best: “Mrs. soon to be Elu….yeah.”

He says, “No one will ever know how to pronounce your last name again.” Great!

And to think I used to get frustrated about people writing my name as D-E-A-N. Now what do I have in store?

I recently read an article that said women who kept their last names were more likely to have successful careers. They also tend to make more money. Meanwhile women who change their last names are judged by their peers as being more emotional and caring.

But wait a minute – I want a successful career AND I want to be seen as caring and sweet. Why can’t I have both?

This debate seems to lead me to the age old misconception that women who are successful in the business world must be bitches. And women that make good wives must be push overs. It is just not true. There is a good balance. We need to break these dumb stereotypes.

I have been in two minds about the name change for as long as I remember.

My logic goes something like this:

1. Changing my name would mean for less complicated paperwork

2. I hate hyphenations. I hate, hate, hate hyphens. I would never impose that on my child.

3. I want my family unit to all have the same last name.

4. There is something very romantic to me about taking your husband’s last name.

But then….

1. I love my last name.

2. Will it change my identity?

3. Where will my family lineage go?

4. It goes so darn well with my first name!

Add into the mix that literally ALL of my cousins have had girls (yes- the Deen clan is dwindling I tell you), and this makes me feel even MORE guilty about dropping the name.

But at the same time there is something very symbolic and spiritual about the name change. Like a thread you are spiritually weaving. And in the end it is this complex, beautiful quilt.

So I have decided to take his last name, but keep my last name for my creative endeavors. So my books will be published in my maiden name.

And at the end of the day what I am truly saying is:

A rose by any other word will smell as sweet.

And Suki E. will be just as sweet as Suki D.

The most important thing won’t be whether it is E or D, or any other letter. It will be that I am a Mrs.

Photo by Paul Patton

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