Randy and I both love our “main” bank, but the past months our branch has been disappointing us. A few months ago, I misplaced/lost my credit card. I immediately called its hotlines to report my missing card, but neither our PLDT landline nor our Globe mobile numbers could get through. I had to call the branch that issued the card. But when I requested for some details (I wanted to check what was the last purchase made so I’ll know whether my card has been used illegally), the person whom I was talking to made me feel that I was disturbing her. 🙁
Anyway, I went to the bank to request a replacement. Since I got my card before I got married, it bore “Dewmaine K Sales” only. I requested to use the legal name I have adopted since I got married, which is Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga. I submitted valid IDs and marriage contract for my request to push through.
I could have been arrested!
A month or two later, I got my card, which still says, “Dewmaine K Sales”. Randy (who goes to the bank more often) complained on my behalf. He was told that it’s only temporary and will be replaced. After a month, I received a new card. It still says, “Dewmaine K Sales”. Randy called again, and was told it will still be replaced.
Last week was our preschool’s field trip to DreamPlay (one of the marketing officers there said she reads my blog. 🙂 Hi Via!). I was told that I could use a credit card, so I no longer brought cash. As I was paying, blood drained from my face because my credit card was rejected over and over again. In fact, the cashier at DreamPlay said that the instruction was for my card to be confiscated and to report me.
My gahd, I hate drugs!
Good thing I had my ATM with me, whew! Otherwise, I wouldn’t have known where to get money to pay DreamPlay!!! I called Randy to call our bank and demand why my credit card wasn’t working. ‘Yun pala, it was cancelled (without informing us!) because my new credit card with my updated name (finally!) was already on its way. Grrr! Good thing I’ve been communicating with DreamPlay for the past weeks—they knew I was really “Dewmaine K Sales” and that the credit card I was using was not stolen! Otherwise baka inaresto na ako sa DreamPlay! Que horror, que barbaridad!!!
Yesterday, I received my 3rd revised credit card. True enough, my name was changed. Pero waley pa rin. Look:
It’s still wrong! It should be Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga, as I had written on the information sheet I filled out. That’s different from Dewmaine Sales Ladaga or Dewmaine S. Ladaga. My legal name is Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga.
What’s in a name?
Perhaps some of you wonder what the heck is the difference between Dewmaine Sales Ladaga and Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga. Well, they’re as different as night and day. OK, maybe as different as noon and afternoon.
Dewmaine Sales Ladaga is like Dewmaine S. Ladaga, but not like Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga. Like, Juan Ponce-Enrile is not Juan P. Enrile; he is Juan Ponce-Enrile. And it’s Miriam Defensor-Santiago and not Miriam D. Santiago.
‘Pag may katwiran, ipaglaban mo scene at the LTO
Months ago when I was renewing my student’s permit at LTO (bawal magtanong kung bakit Student’s Permit pa rin! Hindi ‘yun ang point ng blog post na ‘to! Hehehe), I got held up because they wouldn’t accept the name I wrote—they didn’t want Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga—wala raw ganun! Dewmaine S. Ladaga lang daw dapat! When I showed them a valid, government-issued ID that bears my “Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga” name, I was summoned into that branch’s director’s office. The director seemed patronizing, kesho nasa batas daw ba na pwede kong gawing ganun ang name ko. I firmly said, “Yes”, and even cited Miriam Defensor-Santiago, Lucy Torres-Gomez, etc. as examples. He cut me off and asked me to provide a legal basis. I Googled and showed him an article discussing it, but he shrugged me off and told me he didn’t need articles—he needed legal basis because, after all, he was a law student (the article I showed him in fact states the law basis of what I’m saying). I was honestly irritated because he was making me feel stupid. He even asked where I went to college (sa UP, bakit? Hehehe), what I do for a living, “Saan mo ba nakuha ang idea na pwede mong gawing ganun ang pangalan mo?” and “Bakit hindi mo na lang gamitin ang apelyido ng asawa mo?” when he finally realized I was right all along.
Article 370 of the New Civil Code of the Philippines
Art. 370. A married woman may use:
(1) Her maiden first name and surname and add her husband’s surname, or
(2) Her maiden first name and her husband’s surname, or
(3) Her husband’s full name, but prefixing a word indicating that she is his wife, such as “Mrs.”
Bakit nga ba?
I decided to hyphenate because I wanted to keep my identity while still submitting to my husband. I have mentioned in my previous blogs how I was “Girl power!” in the past years. In fact, my only two married close friends in college are not even using their husband’s last names! I also thought it would be convenient should Randy and I separate–if I drop his last name and I become Dewmaine Sales again and my IDs bear Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga, at least the people I transact business with still know it’s I (Note: I was a realist like that. I wanted to be ready in case our marriage doesn’t work out. It’s also the why I didn’t want to have a child right away–para parang dalaga pa rin ako if we separate. Please don’t be like me. If you you get married, believe that it will last and tell yourself you will fight for your marriage). Plus the fact that I had a hard time accepting my new name because it all felt surreal to me when I got married. But by the time I have finally accepted that I am really Mrs. Ladaga (waaah, pangmatanda! Misis!!!) and I felt that my new name was so long, it was too late because my sole government-related ID—my passport—says I am Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga. So pinaninindigan ko na na ako si Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga.
Anyway, I’m blogging about this because it’s saddening that so many people (bank people, LTO people, etc.) don’t seem to know that hyphenated last names are legal names, and that one can’t simply remove the name before the hyphen for the sake of brevity.
And to my recently-wed friends and readers out there who are hyphenating their last names…sure kayo mga besh? At least my full name (even with the hyphen) is still relatively short–kaya ko ‘tong panindigan! Your legal names are not subject to “para effect lang”. So decide now whether you will go with hyphenation. If you decide it’s too tedious, pwes tanggalin na ang hyphen kahit sa Facebook name ninyo. You may still use your original last name followed by your husband’s, but no more hyphen if that’s not your plan.
Dewmaine Sales-Ladaga (not Dewmaine S. Ladaga or Dewmaine Sales Ladaga)