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Should I change my surname?

Harise Stein hstein at ccnet.com
Tue Feb 21 19:36:26 EST 1995

Here's another viewpoint, although the advice you've been given already 
is very good--to do what seems right in your heart, not to satisfy 
someone else.  I kept my maiden name as my professional name, since my MD 
license, etc. all had that on it.  However, I thought it would be 
important for any children we had to feel like we were one family (that 
doesn't mean you can't feel like that with two names, but that is how I 
felt).  So when I got married I legally changed my name to my husband's 
name, since I figured "my" name was actually my father's name and I 
didn't identify "me" that much with it.  So I am Dr. Stein and Mrs. 
Staple in different contexts, and I must say I have enjoyed being able to 
have the anonimity of a Mrs. at times.  (When I don't want people at a party 
to come up and start asking me all kinds of medical questions, for 
instance.)  My kids are Staple, and I feel fine with that--I don't have 
the feeling my contribution has been neglected because they don't have my 
label on them.  However, everyone feels differently about this, and you 
must chose what sits right with you.  And remember that nothing is carved 
in stone--if something doesn't work out you can always change it.  Yes, 
it will be a royal pain, and you might lose important recognition for a 
time, but if it is that important to you it will work out.

Best of luck!

Harise Stein
(woman of two names for 18 years)

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