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What’s a marriage-minded lesbian to do when she wants to get married but lives in a place that still discriminates against LGBTQ+ people by keeping their marriages illegal?
Do you live somewhere it’s unsafe to be out as a lesbian or be obvious that you are a woman who loves women?
Have you encountered heartless licensing officials, pastors, venues, or wedding vendors who refuse to help you marry the woman you love?
What’s so crazy is I know so many lesbians who have had trouble marrying, even where it’s legal. That Bible belt buckle is hard to break.
Do you live some place where being lesbian can get you fired? That might make it a little intimidating to think about having a wedding event right?
Yes, there are reasons some of you stay in the closet about parts of your life.
You’re in the closet at work, at church and with your family. You’ve got straight friends and you might even have your “straight” date friend.
He knows you’re a lesbian, but he’s happy to act as your cover because he’s gay and needs a cover story, too.
For many of my lesbian sisters, the whole point of dating is to create a long and lasting relationship.
You want marriage. You want that symbol of commitment. You want the recognition and respect that is paid to marriage in your community.
You want the financial benefits, and you want the sense of certainty about moving forward in your relationship and knowing you and your partner really are committed to making it work.
“Most LGBT couples want equal rights
and equal protection under the law.”
One of the many state “hate” facts is you can still get fired for being LGBTQ+ in 29 states.
In 1997, all 50 states denied gays and lesbians the right to marry.
We can now marry in all 50 states thanks to a Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage, but we don’t know if that will hold, and we do know that 30 states have passed constitutional amendments in the past stating marriage is between a man and a woman only.
Some cities, like Austin, Texas, approved a local ordinance in 2012 allowing domestic partnership agreements within the city limits as one way to circumnavigate state bans on same-sex marriage.
My hometown of Portland, Maine, passed a domestic partnership ordinance in May of 2001, and Maine was among the first liberal states to pass a statewide same-sex marriage bill by popular vote.
Yes, that’s a big deal. It took four tries and more than 10 years of work to accomplish.
Many lesbians have their own ceremonies with an officiate of some sort to perform the vows while having family and friends as witnesses.
They couldn’t always do so legally, so sometimes they don’t know how to go from cohabitating committed couple to lawfully wedded couple.
Some lesbians even say they’re not interested in the institution of marriage altogether because it rejected them for so long.
While for some a committed partnership without marriage can be the perfect solution, what most LGBTQ+ couples want are equal rights and equal protection under the law, and marriage is a big symbol for both.
For you, is the whole idea of dating about finding a long-term relationship and fulfilling your gay girl dream of having a wedding with all the pomp and circumstance?
Have you found your lesbian love despite the challenges and discrimination that still exist in this imperfect society?
I sure hope so, and don’t let the hate and ignorance of others stop you from getting fully married.
When your darling gay girl and you decide it’s time to tie the knot and let the world know, then maybe it’s time to schedule a vacation to New York state where vendors will be only too happy to accomodate you.
For the time being, same-sex marriage is legal everywhere in the U.S., so you have options in your own hometown to tie the knot as well. But if a homophobic baker or a snide law clerk makes you feel unwelcome as a marriage-minded lesbian, don’t hesitate to head to a liberal city or state where the vibe is generally more favorable to rainbow love. Best wishes!
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