When I was in high school, my chemistry teacher went through a messy divorce, after which she held onto her ex’s last name. I assume she probably figured it would be easier to just keep going by her married name than to try to get a bunch of air-headed teens to call her by a different one, but I remember thinking this was really sad. After all, who would want to lug around their ex’s last name, a constant reminder of your failed relationship? It is only now, thanks to a certain Melinda French Gates — formerly known as Melinda Gates — that I can recognize refusing to give up your ex-husband’s name for the flex that it is.
Unlike fellow high-profile divorcés Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, Bill and Melinda Gates have made relatively quick work of terminating their marriage, finalizing their divorce less than three months after they announced their separation in May — though reports suggest the divorce had actually been in the works for years prior. A judge for the King County Superior Court in Washington State approved the former couple’s divorce on Monday, the New York Times reported, ending the 27-year marriage. Since their three children are all over 18, there was no messy custody battle, and Melinda will not be receiving any spousal support. She is, however, holding onto her ex’s last name — though she inserted her family name, French, after announcing the separation.