Culture / News & Politics / Sex & relationships

Equality and Dreams of Marriage

LawfullyWeddedLife

Welcome back to our Wednesday  Lawfully Wedded Life. series. We took a pause last week, in light of the collective impact and aftermath of the Boston Marathon bombings.  We resume this week with guest author Michelle, who writes to us from some 3,000 west of Boston, in Washington state. The post below appeared originally at her blog Journey to the Light on March 18th.

Do you have a story to tell about marriage, marriage equality, or the lack thereof? Submit yours here. We’ll be running the series through the SCOTUS marriage equality decision(s), expected late June 2013.

 

Life has been good to me lately. Crazy like always, but good. The relationship I’m in now with L is the most fulfilling one I have ever been in and I have never been more in love. You know I did the marriage thing before and it ended badly, but I honestly think it’s just because I wasn’t with the right person. The right person was half way across the country, right where she had been since before I got in a relationship with the man I married. It’s a very long story but basically what it boils down to is that at the time I had been scared of who I was and he was the safer relationship choice, the one that I could happily tell my family and friends about without worrying about judgment, and also the one that I could actually do the whole wedding and kids thing with that I had dreamed about since I was little. In the end it wound up being the relationship most wrong for me out of all the ones that had come before. Yet I still was able to marry him, even if maybe I shouldn’t have bothered, purely because he was a man and I was a woman.

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Until it passed at the ballot box this past election, I wouldn’t have been able to do that with my new love simply because she is also a woman. Luckily Washington State is full of many people who agree with me that gender should not be an issue if two people choose to commit themselves to each other and want to get married. If we ever choose to get married, it’s nice to know that my relationship with L won’t legally be seen as “less” than the one I had with my ex-husband. After all, this relationship is way more to me than that one ever was. Our kids (mine biologically with the ex) also know that they now have two mommies that adore them and one of those mommies is a lot less tense, stressed, and anxious than she was over a year ago.

If we do get married I will be proud to have the kids there and involved. It’s what families do, after all, when parents remarry. What difference should it make that the kids will be getting a step-mom instead of a step-dad? She loves them and they love her. We are already a family and we don’t need the validation of marriage to make that true. I needed a bit of time to grow and figure myself out before I could realize this though. Knowing that we can go that route if we choose to, however, gives a certain measure of comfort in this uncertain world.

I wouldn’t change my relationship with L for anything; it has made me a better person, a better mother, and a better friend. Even if Washington voters hadn’t decided to allow same-sex marriage last November I would still be with her now, we would still be in love, and she would still be an amazing and loving parent to C & R the two crazy monkeys that adore her. A part of me will always hope for the dream of marriage and a family I had as a little girl. And now, at least in a few places, I will be allowed that dream regardless of the gender of who I want to marry.

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