Terrible, horrible case of feminist insomnia, in which I can’t sleep because I’m so annoyed. It is, obviously, wedding season, but this is not about my feelings about marriage. Not really. Here’s what happened.
Today, someone I know got married. People posted pictures of the wedding with captions, one of which contained the comment: “Mr. and Mrs. (Dude’s First Name and Last Name)!” In case you’re wondering, the person who made this comment is not, in fact, eighty years old.
I wanted so badly to write beneath the picture, “HOW DO YOU THINK (name of the bride) FEELS ABOUT THE FACT THAT YOU JUST ERASED HER FIRST AND LAST NAME?”
The truth is that the bride might be okay with being Mr. Dude’s First Name and Last Name. She might have waited for this her entire life. It’s annoying that this Facebook comment was made, but it’s even worse that we’re still doing this, erasing a woman’s ENTIRE NAME and it’s supposed to be okay. It’s supposed to be romantic.
It’s not romantic, people. It’s not cute, or sweet. (If you think patriarchy is cute and sweet, this conversation is over.) I am aware that name change is not the most important issue feminists are dealing with, but it is symbolic of a larger problem-namely, that women’s autonomy and identity are always seen as negligible. We’re supposed to be subsumed by men, by romantic relationships, by a certain kind of life, and like it, want it, crave it, do anything for it, including devoting all our energy and power and imagination to getting it, because without it, what are we?
Of course, I didn’t write anything. I don’t know the person who made the comment, and I couldn’t think of a way to make my total disgust known without seeming like an asshole. But there must be a way to deal with this less…passive aggressively, right? Ideas are welcome.