Dear Barb – Keeping Marriage Promises

Dear Barb:

I just got married to a wonderful guy. Before we got married we had discussed that I would not change my name to his and he was okay with it, but now he’s changed his mind. He thinks I should take his name and because I don’t want to he feels I am being disrespectful to him. I think his change of mind might be originating as a result of his Italian background. His parents have mentioned to me that I should take his name. What do I do? I love my husband and want things to be okay, but I also don’t want to compromise myself. Baffled in BC!

Hi Melissa:

If this is something you agreed on before marriage, then it should not be an issue now. Perhaps your in-laws are pressuring your husband because they are concerned that their grandchildren will not be taking the family name. Maybe you could address this issue with his parents. I agree you should not compromise yourself, as you and your husband had agreed on this prior to marriage.

Dear Barb:

My girlfriend and I have been dating exclusively for three years. We are just finishing our last year of university. Our long-term plan was to finish school, get married, and move out west to begin our careers. It seems like the time just flew by and next week we are flying out to Calgary for job interviews. Kelly is so excited and talking nonstop about our future together. I am not so excited; in fact I think I’m getting cold feet. I’m not sure I want to move out west and I’m not sure Kelly is the girl for me. I haven’t told Kelly how I feel, as I was thinking maybe this is just a phase I’m going through and it will pass. What do you think? Help!
Josh in Kitchener.

Hi Josh:

If you are not sure this is the girl for you, don’t marry her or move anywhere with her, as it is not fair to either of you. Before you make a serious commitment such as getting married or moving to another province with someone, you have to both be on board and 100% committed to the relationship. I doubt that you are even 50% committed. You owe it to tell Kelly about your hesitations immediately. Don’t let her go on believing something that isn’t true. Once you disclose your true feelings I suspect Kelly won’t be so anxious to leave her family and friends and relocate to a new area. Initially she may be quite upset with you because you didn’t come clean right away and tell her of your feelings. On the other hand, you may both want to continue with your relationship and find work at home for now. Kelly may still be the girl for you, but the timing may not be right. Best of luck Josh.

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