A woman is always expected to be open to change and adjust to everything. When a girl is married, she is expected to leave her house, family, culture, studies, city, state, country, and even name. For centuries, it has been the practice for women to adopt their husbands’ surnames after marriage. In some cultures, women are expected to change their first names too.
Nowadays, a lot of people are changing this patriarchal rule of society. A lot of women do not change their names and culture. Many see this as a change towards the betterment and a step towards empowerment, but many people ridicule women for this and insult them on this.
They still think that men own the women and that women should accept this quietly, “learn to compromise!” is what they are told when they try to voice themselves.
Why is the woman considered a ‘sanskari bahu’ when she changes herself as per her husband’s and his family’s wishes. On the other hand, the man is regarded as a ‘joru ka gulam’ if he changes himself according to his wife’s wishes.
Isn’t this what we call double standards? Recently, many celebrities have taken part in this movement and refused to change their maiden names, which has encouraged many ordinary people to accept this and apply it in their lives. This is a small but vital step towards equality. Women, especially aware women, are beginning to realise that they are not any man’s chattel.
A couple of days ago, our Indian Hollywood star Priyanka Chopra removed her husband's surname from her Instagram handle. She even removed her own surname; 'Chopra' as well. But, the audience saw only the former. People have been trolling and raising questions about her intentions about their relationship. Though Nick's mother has cleared the air by stating that the rumours are untrue, she is still being trolled and insulted for it. She is an individual, independent and a successful being yet people judge her for making her decisions. I think that says a lot about us as people.
Recently, the court had said that changing the woman’s name or surname will not affect her marital status while deciding on an application for maintenance by a woman married to a police constable. This proves that the law does not expect us to change our names after marriage; it's society’s law that we are following.
This does not mean that a woman changing her name post marriage is unaware or uneducated. But, it should be her choice; there shouldn’t be a hard and fast rule that she must change her name or must NOT change her name. Let it be her choice, no?