I am also having trouble with the name change decision!!
I always said I would never take someone's last name. My FI wanted me to, and I'm sure still does, but has come around to saying it is completely up to me and he won't be upset either way. I think he finally understands! My last name is used as my nickname by almost EVERYONE I know, so for me it is like changing my first name in some ways. Also, professionally I have published science research under my name, so I have established it and do not like to change it.
However, I don't know what to do when we have kids. I completely agree that the tradition is there for the wrong reasons (being property), but part of me loves being a single family under one name. A unit. So my idea is to change it legally, use it in the future with schools etc, but keep my maiden name as the one I actually use.
As L-Mango said, "That's why I am content to keep my maiden name as my official name but use my FI's last name for things like a passport, etc. If you don't change your name, whose name do your kids take?? What a mess. "
But can you really have the best of both worlds? I'm gonna try it out, and see how it goes! Overall though, I am a bit resentful that we have to deal with it in the first place...