My husband was no help in making this decision, which was actually one of the things I love about him. I asked if he had an opinion. He looked at me like I was crazy and said, "It's your name." Damn Right.
Six years later, I am still settling into my decision. At first, I thought I'd use Cain-Wood personally (with friends and family) in sort of an unofficial capacity. I guess I was sort of trying it on.
When it came to the paperwork and my professional life, I'd just keep it Cain. I coasted like this for about 2 years. Even my husband couldn't keep straight what to call me when.
Problems popped up from not sharing a name with my husband, but nothing too big. Until one summer, we had 3 pretty major situations including having our passports seized and being shortly detained in Puerto Rica customs. Let me tell you, when they take your passport and suddenly stop speaking English, you get a little antsy.
So I made the legal change to Cain-Wood. Only I waited so long after the wedding (2.5 years) that it was way more complicated to change. At this point I was still trying to keep just the maiden name at work. The problem is once you change your name legally, lots of work things (insurance, payroll, taxes, logins) start to change automatically. I had to put in a personal request for IT to NOT change my email address (although the sender info automatically showed my new name).
So after another 2 years of struggling to answer the question: What name to use when? I decided I'm all in. Cain-Wood on everything, all the time. But, I still find myself being very inconsistent. It's hard to get used to saying the new name, especially when the first half is what I've been saying for so many years.
In retrospect, I wish I'd come to this conclusion from the beginning and began my married life as Cain-Wood. It's like lots of weird married-type-stuff, I had to figure it out along the way.