Should I give my son his father's surname even though we are not together?

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  • #11953 Report


    Me and my son’s father split up back end of 2017 just around the time I found out I was pregnant. He was mostly absent throughout the pregnancy except for the odd meal out and gesture of flowers and openly admitted he did not want to be a father. I gave birth to our son 10 days ago 5 weeks premature and throughout the birth he was fairly supportive. After the birth however he spent about 10 minutes a day with us if that. When I said I wanted to register our son with a double surname due to us not being together he said he was unhappy with that as he wanted the baby to have his surname only. When I persisted with this he has now told me to give our son my surname and go through the CSA. He has deleted me off all social media and we have not heard anything or seen him since. The birth was very traumatic in itself and I struggled a lot in the first few days and to now be facing issues between myself and his father I feel somewhat upset. I have considered just using his fathers surname but then i feel like I’m being manipulated into a decision I don’t want to make. I’d like to get other peoples opinion on the surname….am I being unreasonable in wanting our son to have both our surnames as we are not together?

    #11954 Report


    Personally I find double-barrelled surnames completely unnecessary and juvenile. I suppose if a double-barrelled surname person meets another one and they have kids, the child’s surname should be quadrupled? Brooklyn Smith-Jones-Pfefferberg-Smith? And so on. And on. It’s just ridiculous. One or the other I say. And then the argument is which name comes first?

    Indeed, I gave my children the mummy’s surname as we’re not married and it’s just a historical quirk that the baby MUST take the father’s surname. It’s all archaic nonsense and doesn’t mean anything. Just choose one or the other. Your ex doesn’t seem bothered, the CMS will get you your money either way, and eventually you will meet someone else so you’ll both be bringing up a child in someone else’s name. Unless it’s double-barrelled. And then you have a kid with the new guy. And that is also double-barrelled. Then you’ll have siblings, one called Smith-Jones, and one called Smith-Patel. Gah. Keep it simple and think of the child.

    #11971 Report



    Can only agree with the above. You are primary carer as he appears to be opting out.  Choose whichever name you are most comfortable with but for practical purposes, yours will probably be better. And if he starts being awkward about maintenance, go through the CSA as he appears to have said himself.

    I can see why you are worrying about it but you’ve gone through the traumatic birth of a premature baby. Make a decision about the name, stick to it and then concentrate on your health and your baby’s.  Good luck

    #11972 Report



    I would definitely go with your gut. Was in a very similar situation and in the end I did go double barrelled. (Not a massive fan myself of double barrelled names but felt it was a fair decision) Whether I regret it or not is neither here nor there because at the end of the day the child will grow up exactly the same- a name is a name and at the end of the day and if the child really wants one name over the other when they grow up then they will have the right to change it. Also you can with consent of the other parent on the birth certificate just have them known under a preferred name at school, docs etc if things don’t work out. Xx



    #11977 Report


    Id go with what you want. In my situation i gave my child my name as we were not together and in later life it would be silly in my opinion to have a load of names. If you want both names i would choose that.

    #12186 Report


    Hi Jaynie,

    I split up with my son’s father when I was seven months pregnant. We had originally agreed that we would do the double last name, mine first, his last, but some bad stuff happened and I decided not to name him on the birth certificate. I gave my son my last name only. I will say that if you want to travel outside the UK it’s easier if you have the same name as your child, and the same goes for nursery applications and other paperwork. However my son is two now and his dad is asking for me to name him on the birth certificate. I don’t want to amend it but I think it’s possible to change it at a later date, although I’m sure that could result in more difficulties later if there is a name change. It’s hard having to make all sorts of important decisions alone, but it sounds like you’re doing a really good job.

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