Over the years of being on Facebook, I've had friend requests from people I didn't recognize by name because they were using their married name which I didn't know and didn't also include their maiden name. I either figured out who they are from their pictures or profile information, deduced it from mutual friends or if I still couldn't figure it out, asked a mutual friend what name I would know this person as. I have also seen several friends change their name: either first and middle or if they are married (or divorced and still have his name), their maiden and married initials for a last name. I can think of 3 male friends off the top of my head who are currently not using their real last names so this isn't limited to just the women.
Everyone has their reasons for doing this. One of my guy friends mentioned above created his Facebook account around the time he was looking for a job. One just wants a low online profile. Some do it because they simply want to be harder to find. One of my widowed friends did it because she was having issues with her in-laws so she deleted her account and started over with a new name. Some, I think, just get bored and change it on a whim because they can.
I've never thought it was a big deal to change your name on Facebook, but apparently it is. I discovered this by changing mine. I then posted a picture as part of a daily challenge and immediately someone commented "Wow! You changed your name!" (I wanted to respond to that and ask what they thought about the picture). I had someone else tell me they almost deleted me because they were confused as to who I was. I have noticed someone who normally likes all my posts hasn't liked any since I changed my name. And the best (seriously-I'm not being sarcastic on this one) was a childhood friend I have known since we were 5 (actually, she was my first best friend) sending me a message to ask if everything is okay.
To be honest, I didn't think anyone would even notice and it does feel good that they did and that they want to make sure everything is okay. Although I do suspect one is hoping for some juicy drama. And here is the juicy drama leading to me changing my name:
I am now participating in several groups. In fact, that and messaging are pretty much the primary functions for which I am now using Facebook. (Totally just changed that sentence so I wouldn't end it in a preposition. Go me!). A few of these groups are literally worldwide. I don't know these people personally and I decided as I become more active in these groups, I wanted to be more anonymous with my personal information.
Scandalous, I know.