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More mothers in China giving second child their maiden name

The new trend has increased among households that are allowed to have more than one child, and have sometimes led to disputes within families.

By
Elizabeth Shim
Chinese families and students visit a frozen lake to skate, ski at a popular tourist area in Beijing on Feb. 6. China’s relaxation of its one-child policy has led to more mothers giving a second child their maiden name. File Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI
Chinese families and students visit a frozen lake to skate, ski at a popular tourist area in Beijing on Feb. 6. China’s relaxation of its one-child policy has led to more mothers giving a second child their maiden name. File Photo by Stephen Shaver/UPI | License Photo

BEIJING, Oct. 5 (UPI) -- China's relaxation of its one-child policy has led to more mothers giving a second child their maiden name, but the practice is leading to family conflicts, according to reports.

Chinese state news agency Xinhua reported the new trend has increased among households that are allowed to have more than one child. In 2013, the BBC reported China permitted families – where one parent was an only child – to give birth to more than one, a significant change of policy.

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The second child is sometimes given the mother's maiden name, after the firstborn is given the father's name in accordance with tradition. South Korean news agency Yonhap reported in the Chinese city of Ningbo in Zhejiang province, a mother with the surname Su became mired in a dispute with her husband, after she gave birth to her second child, a son.

Prior to the child's birth, Su and her spouse had agreed the newborn would carry her maiden name, but the husband and the woman's in-laws opposed the move, because the child was a boy who could carry the patrilineal bloodline. A local court ruled in favor of Su, and while the dispute did not lead to divorce, Chinese media reported the incident had splintered the household.

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Other cases similarly involved resistance from the husband, or the husband's family, and a wife with no siblings who wanted to continue her bloodline.

One woman in Hangzhou, also in Zhejiang province, said she and her husband have been planning a second child for five years, but have been unable to reach an agreement on naming.

The woman with the surname Wang said she had asked her in-laws to register the second child in her name, but they have refused, according to Chinese state media.

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"I am a single child, and I know my father wants me to continue the bloodline," Wang said. "I hope to amicably resolve this problem with my in-laws without getting hurt, and that it would not affect the well-being of our child."

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