When we said our vows, we meant them.
We took out that whole “obey” bullshit, but the rest…
We meant them.
Lemur and I have been married sixteen years this Friday. That’s a driving-age child, if we were parenting types.
So why did we get married?
I answered that here, but let me attempt to explain, and shed some light on the fact that marriage equality strengthens all marriage.
Lemur and I married for love. We didn’t want kids together. We wanted a life together. Every day, ’til death do us part.
That’s all same-sex couples want. Sure, some of them also want kids, but they want love first. They found love first, love worth the legal battle all the way to the Supreme Court.
Max Vos, has a great blog post about gay divorce court (and marriage equality, if you take the time to read it). No, it won’t always work out. Everyone makes mistakes. But the first mistake a couple can make is getting married because they think they should, or because that’s the next logical step in an adult life.
There are many important life-affirming steps to growing up. Getting a job, and making a career. Moving out of your parents’ house. Finding yourself, whatever that means. Enjoying spending time alone. These are as important as getting married. In many cases, they are more important. (Just try to start a life with someone when you’re unemployed, living in your mom’s basement, and wondering what the fuck you want to be when you grow up, and you’ll see what I mean.)
I am a firm believer in knowing yourself before you try to find someone to love. (And no, I don’t mean that thing you do with your hand, perv.) Knowing who you are and what you want before you start a relationship will ensure that the person you find is the one you want. Otherwise, you’re just looking for a warm body. Public Service Announcement: assholes have warm bodies, too.
Lemur is my perfect match. When I was stressing over my freshman finals, he introduced me to Sub Zero. When I told him about my patron saint of HIV tests, he bought me a Queen CD. When I fell in love with him, he played Alanis Morissette’s “Head Over Feet,” and said he felt the same way. (Though this video always makes me think of Aladdin: “Too close. A little too close!”)
When I stressed over my student-teaching placement and worried about the uncertainty of our future together, Lemur interrupted one of my long-winded rants with, “Do you want to marry me?”
After a long, stunned pause, I said, “Yes. Do you want to marry me?”
“Yeah. Let’s get married.”
Many of my friends have long, beautiful proposal stories. Ours was in the middle of a stress fight, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. This is who we are. I am constantly fretting about something, and he is constantly talking me down from the ledge and giving me faith in humanity. Sometimes, I don’t even feel stressed. I know I can talk about it, and he’ll be there to tell me it’s no big deal.
I love this man. Even though we don’t have children, and you may not think we needed a ceremony, piece of paper, or joint tax return to say that we belong together, it matters to us. We may be one man and one woman, but what makes us better than any other two people in love?
Nothing. Nothing at all. And that’s why marriage equality matters. Marriage is about love. It’s not about which parts you squish together, or about how many progeny spawn from your loins. It’s about love.
Somewhere over the course of history, I think society forgot that. It’s time to remember, one love story at a time.