Stand By Your Man

Jennifer Lopez is Clapping Back At The Criticism She’s Getting For Changing Her Last Name

She says taking “Mrs. Affleck” was a traditional and romantic jesture.

PARIS, FRANCE - JULY 26: Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck are seen at the Louvre Museum on July 26, 20...
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The world collectively sighed when Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck made all our early ‘00s dreams come true and reunited in April 2021. And after a little over a year of dating, the couple married in Las Vegas in July 2022.

Though both these Hollywood stars have not had a very normal or tradition relationship arc, there seems to be one thing these two are taking the more traditional route on — Jennifer is officially Mrs. Affleck.

And not everyone is happy with her choice

In the new December 2022 issue of Vogue, Lopez responded to a New York Times opinion piece that suggested her decision to change her last name was out of step with feminism.

"What? Really?" she asked. "People are still going to call me Jennifer Lopez. But my legal name will be Mrs. Affleck because we’re joined together," the “Love Don’t Cost A Thing” singer said. "We’re husband and wife. I’m proud of that. I don’t think that’s a problem."

She called the move a "traditional" and "romantic" decision.

When asked if the couple ever considered Affleck changing his name to Lopez, the Wedding Planner actress quickly shot that idea down. “It's not traditional. It doesn't have any romance to it. It feels like it's a power move,” she said.

She explained that just because she changed her last name doesn’t mean she has lost who she is or any sort of power in her relationship. She sees the decision to change her name as an empowering move as a woman.

“I’m very much in control of my own life and destiny and feel empowered as a woman and as a person. I can understand that people have their feelings about it, and that’s okay, too," Lopez said.

She added, “But if you want to know how I feel about it, I just feel like it’s romantic. It still carries tradition and romance to me, and maybe I’m just that kind of girl.”

So, how does the love that these two have for each other now compare to their whirlwind, highly publicized romance from November 2002? Lopez said that they were "so young and so in love" during their first go-round.

She added that their "carefree" attitude about being in the public eye "turned out to really bite us."

“I became very guarded because I realized that they will fillet you," she explained. “I really wish I could say more. I used to be like that. I am like that. But I’ve also learned.”

In the same interview, Lopez also spoke about her and Affleck’s blended families and how co-parenting is going.

Lopez shares two children — fraternal twins, Max and Emme, 14, — with ex-husband and singer, Marc Anthony. Affleck is dad to three kids, Violet, 16, Seraphina, 13, and Samuel, 10, with his ex-wife, Jennifer Garner.

Lopez opened up about Garner in a rare but sweet moment, calling the Alias star “an amazing co-parent," and remarked that the 13 Going On 30 star and Affleck "work really well together.”

As for working together with such a large, blended family — Lopez says it all “needs to be handled with so much care,” noting that all the kids are teens or pre-teens with a lot of emotions and feelings about the new family structure.

“They have so many feelings. They’re teens,” she says of her and Affleck's kids. ‘But it’s going really well so far. What I hope to cultivate with our family is that his kids have a new ally in me and my kids have a new ally in him, someone who really loves and cares about them but can have a different perspective and help me see things that I can’t see with my kids because I’m so emotionally tied up.”

At the end of the day, Lopez knows that no matter what the public thinks of her relationship or the choices she makes, all she needs to do is remain true to herself. She learned to prioritize what she wants in life and be there for her kids.

“You turn yourself into a pretzel for people and think that that’s a noble thing, to put yourself second. And it’s not,” she says.

“Those patterns become deep patterns that you carry with you, and then at a certain point you go, ‘Wait, this doesn’t feel good. Why am I never happy?’ I really felt that way for a long time. And finally I was just like, ‘Ugh! It’s time to figure me out because I need to be good for these babies’.”