Bride-to-be Blogger Carly: Deciding to Change My Name

Bride-to-be Blogger Carly: Deciding to Change My Name


Carly Day. That’s my name. (Don’t wear it out!) I’ve always loved my name: easy to say, easy to spell, and I think it has a nice ring to it. Back in high school both teachers and friends would call me by my full name. “It just flows,” they would say.

I’ve been Carly (Anne) Day for 28 years (aka my whole life) and that’s all about to change … How weird is that? I’ve always known that I would want to take my husband’s last name when I get married. I like the idea of sharing a name and beginning a family together. I know that there are other options out there: keeping my maiden name, hyphenating, or (most untraditional) asking Sean to take my name. But none of those options will do for me, so I’ll just have to get used to my new name, Meluney.

It took me a couple of dates to get Sean’s last name right in my head. Meluney is a name I’d never heard before and, unlike Day, doesn’t quite roll off the tongue the way my current one does. Nonetheless, it will be mine eight months from now.

And while I know that I’ll soon be Carly Meluney, I’m still trying to figure out what comes in-between. I really like my middle name; my mom’s middle name is also Ann, without the ‘e’—and I like having that connection to her. I also like the way Carly Anne sounds and think having the “Anne” in the middle breaks up the redundant “y” sound of Carly Meluney. But, then where does Day go? Sure, I could give it to one of my future children as a middle name, but that doesn’t feel like the answer. So, Carly Anne Meluney or Carly Day Meluney (or I guess Carly Anne Day Meluney, but that’s getting to be really long!), the jury’s still out. But I’m so happy to be marrying Sean and to share a name with him that, no matter what I choose, I’m certain I’ll get used to my new name, as many, many women have before me!

I’m thinking that, at first, I’ll be so excited to be a married woman that I’ll look for opportunities to introduce myself as Mrs. Carly Meluney. But I’m imaging that the smaller stuff—signing checks, answering the phone, filling out paperwork, will be a more thoughtful transition.

With all this in mind I’ve really gotten to wondering: how long before saying/signing/seeing Carly Meluney starts to feel right? Until my hand naturally pens Meluney on the signature line? Until Carly Meluney is the easy answer to “What’s your name?”?

So I ask you, dear readers, how long before you fully adopted your new name?

Maybe I should get myself a notebook and start dreamily doodling Carly Anne Meluney and Carly Day Meluney until one starts to look right!

RELATED: The First Year: How to Change Your Name

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  • Kris

    Well, I am not married yet, but I too plan to change my name. I guess the hardest part for me is going from my very uncommon last name (Vavala) where everyone with that name is related to me. To a very common last name of Schmidt.

    • Carly

      Hey Kris,
      Thanks for sharing the other end of the spectrum! Are you planning to keep Vavala on as your middle name?

  • daralyn

    You wouldn’t believe how many different ways I have seen people say and write the name Meluney unlike the name Day. I changed my name 33 years ago and have not regretted it once! I am so excited that you will shared the same last name in 8 short months!

    • Carly

      Thanks! Name change or not, I’m very excited to be joining the Meluney clan very soon! <3

  • Karen

    Consider hyphenating your last name. I took my husband’s last name and changed my middle name to my maiden name. Most forms will only accept a middle initial and not your full middle name so your maiden name will be “lost.” Had I realized this would happen, I would have hyphenated my last name. Just something to consider.

    • Carly

      Hi Karen!
      Thanks for sharing. I hadn’t thought about it that way, but I can see how that might happen! I will certainly keep that in consideration as I figure all this out :)


  • kris

    Just saw your question. I will keep Vavala as my middle name. I cant totally drop it.

  • Michelle

    It took me about 4 months. But, for 6 weeks after my wedding, I was unemployed, so my first shot at having to sign anything with my new name was when I got my new job. I haven’t changed my name for grad school yet, and at this point it is weird being called by my maiden name.

    I did try (unsuccessfully) to get my husband to take my name. My dad had two sisters and 3 daughters so I felt pressure to keep the name going. We ended up compromising that he could choose the last name, but I got the final say on the first and middle names of our children. Good Luck!

    • Carly

      Hi Michelle,
      Thanks for your comment! I can relate to wanting to carry on your name, as my dad only had daughters! I like the compromise that you came up with! And I’ve toyed with the idea of somehow incorporating my maiden name into the name(s) of our children.