Thursday, July 19, 2007


Today we got a card addressed to The Zuberbuhlers*. Argh! I hate it! Why do people assume I am changing my name? It really freaks me out. I know some people will say, "what's the big deal? Why not get over it?" But it is a big deal to me, and goes into why I did not want to get married for so long. I think marriage as an institution has some scary roots in gender inequality, not to mention that it is not available to everyone AND the fact that it involves the government in my personal relationship, which is none of their damn business. Anyway, I feel like people are trying to squash my identity by taking away my name, which I love, identify greatly with, and is very important to me. The two pieces of mail combined with my viewing of the Alix Olson dvd are radicalizing my feminism once again. What to do with all this new radical feminist energy, though?

I would love to write more but need to get back to data analysis. Just wanted to briefly vent.

*pretend R's last name is Zuberbuhler.


Julia said...

I so feel your pain. I kept my last name, which led to confusion among co-workers and family alike. I still receive cards addressed to Julia Husband's last name almost a year later. Better yet are those addressed to Mr and Mrs husband's first and last name. Because I no longer have any identity of my own.

Geeka said...

I made a deal with myself that I would just throw away any mail that I got with my husband's last name. My standard excuse is that 'Well, I assumed that it was just junk mail. Anyone that knows me, knows that that isn't my last name."

My grandma has gone all passive aggressive on me, and now spells my first name incorrectly on the mail.

Christopher said...

Take that energy and join a bridge club, Mrs. R Zuberbuhler.

Melinda said...

Hee. Christopher is phunny.

Dude, here's the thing. You know that I totally feel your rage. But this is something that is NOT going to go away. You are totally always going to get mail (and phone calls, and everything else) addressed to Mrs. R. Blah. So you either have to get to a place where you can find it funny and quietly bask in your own feminist superiority, or you have to walk around pissed off all the time.

I'm not saying it doesn't suck because it totally does. Fuck The Man. But half of our FAMILY MEMBERS still call me Mrs. Meh, 4 years after our wedding. We send out Christmas cards every year with correct last name displayed prominently in the return address corner, and they still ignore it. I'll never "give in" and let it stand uncorrected, but beyond that there's not much I can do. Besides blow up the world, anyway.

DancingFish said...

I have only had 2 months of non-name-changing fun so far but I can't stand 1) the people who act like I don't love my husband because I don't 'honor him' by taking his name 2) the people who act all personally offended by my choice.

Erin said...

I'm especially surprised that people who know you-or even know about you-would assume that you're taking R's name. Because, seriously, this is monkeygirl that we're talking about!

My brother still gets really strange comments about the fact that his last name is doubled. Say that he and M were previously B. Orange and M. Juice. They're now B and M Orange Juice. It works just fine and makes lots of sense for them. His name tag at work says Dr. Orange Juice, and people occasionally bug out.

On a related note, when I was getting my hair cut the other day, I had another one of those moments where it was just too hard to explain that no, I don't have any reservations about my partner, but yes, I have reservations about marriage, and no, that doesn't mean he's wrong for me.

Erin said...

I too feel your pain and consternation about this. The boy and I have talked about this, and he often (teasingly) says that it's not right if I don't take his name because it will hard on and confusing for any children we have. I have decided that the small battle of raising enlightened children to understand that women need not give up themselves and their familial identity to be happy or normal.

There must be a place in your head where you laugh at the lack of thought. The real goal is to find the piece looking for Mr. and Mrs. your name. I in fact have gotten mail for Mr. Erin, just because I purchased entrance for myself and a boy at a place and they assumed that the man would be paying.

Anonymous said...

I am assuming that you are talking about me, since I did address the envelope to Mr. and Mrs.
I am sorry to have offended you with my card, incorrectly assuming a wedding gift to Mr. & Mrs. would be appropriate.
Please accept my apologies and know that it will not happen again. I respect your choice and will honor it.

Laurie said...

Hi Melissa, Welcome to the blog! I wasn't at all referring to you, we received several cards addressed that way, and I actually don't remember exactly who they were from. But I am over it now, it was just some venting at the time.

Hope you are having a good week!