I am an unmarried mother of one, my son is now at an age where he can apply for an ID card and he’s brought up the topic of wanting to use his father’s last name. I don’t know why this feels like rejection but I got emotional about it and still don’t quite know how to handle it.
Just the other day he was a baby, I was changing his nappies and have been with him for every single day of his life yet today he’s this tall man who’s telling me he wants to take on his dad’s surname. My first thought was why? What’s wrong with my surname?! Did his father tell him to say this?! It brought down a rush of sadness.
I know I should be mature about this, look at this from his perspective (which I just can’t do right now), whatever it is but I am honestly struggling to bring myself to this level of calm and maturity. The reason he gave is that he wants to have the same surname as his siblings.
And yes I know our culture (or is it tradition? I get confused) says – if a father has paid damages then the child may take on his surname kodwa isn’t it more normal when it happens when he’s a baby rather than now? Is there a traditionalists who can explain the importance of doing this? I know a few people who have changed surnames in their 30s but I never asked, though I assumed, it had to do with connecting with their fathers or mothers.
I don’t know how to handle this…and am not sure who to ask so if your guidance would assist.