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What is motherhood and how to give it to a child
What is motherhood and how to give it to a child

It is not easy to replace the patronymic with a reference to the mother, but some still succeeded.

What is motherhood and how to give it to a child
What is motherhood and how to give it to a child

What is maternity?

Mattness, or matronym, is part of a person's name. It is given by analogy with the patronymic, but formed on behalf of the mother, for example, Maryevich, Anastasyevna, Yelenovich.

Where did it come from?

It may seem that the idea of giving matronyms was born quite recently and was invented by feminists and single mothers. But this is not at all the case. In many cultures, people have been named by their mother in the past and continue to do so today. Matronyms are used in Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines. They are sometimes found in Scandinavian countries. In Spain, a person from birth has a double surname, made up of a paternal and maternal name. And even in Russia there were precedents when people were called by the name of their mother. For example, Prince Yaroslav Vladimirovich Osmomysl had an illegitimate son, who was nicknamed Oleg Nastasich.

Why are matronyms needed?

They perform the same functions as middle names:

  • They indicate the origin of a person and additionally identify him.
  • Emphasize the contribution of the parent (in this case, the mother) to the birth and upbringing of the child.
  • Allow to treat a person with respect if it is required by the situation or subordination.

Supporters of matronyms believe that since a mother gives birth to a child and invests time and effort in raising him, it would be fair to reflect this in his name. After all, most people get their surname from their father, and if so, some element must be from the mother, for example, a matronym. This becomes especially important if a woman is raising a child alone, and this happens in a third of Russian families.

There is also more lyrical reasoning. For example, the philosopher Mikhail Epstein is sure: if people wore materia, it would soften morals and reflect the unity of male and female in any person.

But there are also opponents of this idea?

Of course. There is a heated debate over the use of matronyms. Here are the main arguments of the dissenters:

  • This contradicts Russian traditions and mentality: we have a patriarchal culture, people have always been named after their father, which means that it should be so.
  • This offends men, belittles their role in raising a child and leads to matriarchy.
  • The child will be teased at school. Moreover, wickedness is like a stigma. It shows that the mother was promiscuous in relationships and does not know from whom she gave birth.
  • Motherhood is just as unfair as middle name. You can take double sailor patronymics, as did the Uralets Sergei Mukhlynin, who assigned his mother's name to his patronymic and became Vero-Viktorovich. Or even abandon both matronyms and patronyms as something outdated and use, for example, double names or surnames.

What does the law say?

The situation with matches is not spelled out in the legislation in any way. Article 58 of the Family Code says that a child has the right to a given name, surname and patronymic, and "the patronymic is assigned by the name of the father, unless otherwise provided by the laws of the subjects of the Russian Federation or based on national custom."

These formulations can be interpreted in two ways: there seems to be no direct prohibition, but there is no permission either. In practice, registry office employees refuse those who came to give a child or themselves a matronym, because the law only speaks of a patronymic, and it must be formed from a male name. But there is a loophole. Most female names have male counterparts, even non-obvious ones: Helen, Mariy, Julius, Nataliy, Oles and so on. If it is possible to find a male name identical to the mother's name, such a pseudo-patronymic can be approved in the registry office.

I want to give maternity to my child. How to do it?

If we are talking about an infant who does not yet have a birth certificate, you need to submit an application in person at the registry office or through the "State Services" portal. In the appeal, you must indicate what surname, name and patronymic (motherhood) you want to give to the child.

If the mother's name easily turns into masculine (Alexandra, Eugene, Valentina), there should be no problems. In other cases, you may have to struggle: the registry office employees insist on patronymics and, even if the biological father of the child has abandoned him, they suggest that the mother use the name of the grandfather or another relative. There have not yet been precedents when a newborn was still able to be given a matronym formed from an exclusively female name, for example Tatyana, Irina, Pelageya.

It will not be possible to change the patronymic of a child who already has a birth certificate until his 14th birthday. Then he can do it himself, if he is recognized as capable, or with the permission of his parents (legal representatives).

But what if I want to change my patronymic to a maternity name?

An adult can change their patronymic by contacting the registry office. But here the same restrictions apply as in the case of a newborn, so it is better to look in advance for male counterparts for the mother's name in order to refer to them in case of refusal.

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