I think it's romantic. I think it's nice that married couples have the same last name. I'm sorry, but when I go past a house and I see "John McEnroe and Martina Navratilova" I don't assume they are married. If they are, it gives the impression that they are distant, not close. I know it's all crap, but that's how I feel. I take it for granted that I will have the same name as my wife.

Changing the last name is a ritual, not more. Rituals are bad, you may say, but let's cut the crap right here - marriage is a ritual. Rings are a ritual. So why not go through these rituals that symbolize your love? Why are you getting married? Is it because you love each other, and want to live forever? You can do that without getting married. If it's for the ritual, why give up other rituals? If it's for the mortgage - well, TheLady made a point about the authorities updating the system to deal with modern families. Isn't getting married doing the same? Why not fight the system, so that unmarried couples get the same benefits as married couples? In the USA, families are getting redefined by the minute. But I've strayed...

Please notice the node title mentions 'taking your fiance's last name'. And everyone assumed it's about the woman taking the man's name. I don't have a problem with my wife taking my name. I think that's probably what will happen. But it doesn't have to be like that. If she'll have problems about changing her name, I'll change mine, or we'll both change our names.

I agree with what Wintersweet said, about starting a new family. When you get married, if you look at it in terms of families, you are both leaving your old families, and staring a new one. Families are about togetherness. Not even having the same connecting name seems so distant.

Supposing we stick to our original names, what name will we give our child? I think that this is a battle not worth fighting. It's just a name. A word. It doesn't even exist. It's still romantic, though.