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I was a four year old boy when I was picked up from a minor fall. My boo-boo was brushed off and it was the first time I heard, “You’ll be OK. You’ll heal long before you grow up and get married.”

So when I reached puberty that promise fizzled. It suddenly seemed to only exist for my three sisters. I came to the realization that I was gay and gay people were not even thinking about getting married in 1968, the year I turned twelve. Truth be told, I’m pretty sure I had not yet learned a word for being attracted to another boy.

We, as a culture, have come a long way since 1968. Gay people have learned that it is healthy to “come out.” We have learned that we are stronger when we have a community of others around us lending us emotional support. We have developed our self-esteem and become more productive and find it beneficial to live with the partner we love. We have learned that we are not alone. We now know that we can get married and raise children. We call this “lifestyle”: family living. For the most part, our families have accepted us for as we are and now the citizens of our state have voted to affirm our relationships!

So, as it turns out, my grandmother (even though she didn’t know it at the time) was correct in 1960 when she told me I would grow up and get married. Mom-mom has been gone a long time, but I knew she loved me then and I know she would be ecstatic now to know that I have this opportunity, in 2012, to finally get married.

The realization that marriage is now a reality says to me as a gay man that my community and my family respects me as much as they respect the marriages of my three sisters. This vote FOR Question 6 is was about the inclusion of everyone in our society. Extending this marriage opportunity has strengthened the concept of marriage in the broader community.

We can now place the expectation on all of our children, straight or not, because more people will have everyday conversations about the inevitability that ALL relationships are affirmed and respected when they culminate in marriage.

Our gay sons and lesbians daughters will now set their goal on sharing in that societal expectation.

Thank You Maryland!

Originally posted to Jacovisio on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 12:50 PM PST.

Also republished by Maryland Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  So when's the big day? (4+ / 0-)

    :-)

  •  Permanent companionship with someone (5+ / 0-)

    you love and all the bennies that go with it, is a human right. Period.  (Note: to those morans who think gay marriage will let you marry Fido, the key word is HUMAN).  If it were only about making babies, infertile couples and post-menopausal women wouldn't be allowed to marry--let alone folks like us who didn't want children.

    P.S. I'll be married for 25 years in a "traditional" marriage, and gay marriage hasn't done anything to harm it n(actually, I suspect it supports it, since we're really not at all traditional, merely straight). You guys just aren't trying hard enough!  Get to work.

    Before I die, I want to see marriage equality legal in all 50 states. And I'd like to see right-wing Christians crawl back in their churches and just shut up.

    The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

    by irishwitch on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 01:05:43 PM PST

    •  Not just a human right, an essential part (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      irishwitch

      of a healthy modern society.  I am a firm, FIRM believer in the value of marriage (gay or straight) because of the value it provides to society.  The married pair look after each other in a health, legal, emotional, and economic sense, and provide that all-important two parent household for children.

      "Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it... unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense." -The Buddha

      by Brian A on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 01:15:49 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't view marriage as being about children. (0+ / 0-)

        Read what I wrote above.

        And, frankly, if it's a bad marriage, sticking it out for the kids is wrong. Kids who grow up with a parent who  is emotionally or verbally abusive toward the other parent is NOT healthy for the kids. Plus, I think we really need to debunk the notion that people get married mainly to raise kids. We do NOT need Quiverful families.

        The last time we mixed religion and politics people got burned at the stake.

        by irishwitch on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 04:29:19 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  My partner and I married in New York last year (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sarvanan17, Cali Scribe

    a few months after marriage equality passed there.  Though we live in Ohio, I'm from New York, still have family there, and it meant a lot to me to marry her there.

    We'd been together 20 years and there are some things that getting married didn't change:  we still think of each other as "partners" even though we love being spouses; we will never call each other our "wives"-- too patriarchal-sounding for us; we need a better word!-- and our anniversary will remain the date of our commitment ceremony 20 years ago.  

    But there are other things that getting married DID change.  More of a feeling of security with regard to our legal status vis a vis our child, even though the NY marriage license means nothing in Ohio.  More of a feeling of belonging in the larger community with regard to "marriage".  But the best thing that changed was feeling positive about the future, where our son will be living his life.  The future holds less hatred and less foreshortening of possibilities for him and his friends and his generation.  And that is a huge change that I'm seeing in my lifetime!

    That's one more thing to add to my long list of small problems. --my son, age 10

    by concernedamerican on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 01:15:32 PM PST

  •  What I'm going through now (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Melanie in IA, lineatus

    with my mother-in-law stresses to me even more the importance of marriage equality.

    My (opposite-gender) spouse and I are equal partners in making decisions for her care and helping her out. We're both listed on the powers of attorney for both financial matters and health decisions should she become incapacitated. I can go into the bank and transfer funds from one account to another, no questions asked. People will talk to me like I'm a family member...which I am. In a civil union it would be too easy, especially in many states, to brush me off as a "stranger" who has no part in what happens with her, leaving my spouse alone to handle all the details. Before he retired, I had the responsibility of getting my MIL to doctor's appointments and the like; I was allowed to go into the treatment rooms and participate in discussions because of my familial relationship. In far too many states I would have been shut out from those discussions.

    And if it's your own partner that's ill, it's even worse; in many places you can't even see them in the hospital where they may lie dying.

    "If we ever needed to vote we sure do need to vote now" -- Rev. William Barber, NAACP

    by Cali Scribe on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 01:33:06 PM PST

  •  So happy for you! (0+ / 0-)

    Anyone that wants to marry should be able to. After all, it's commitment, stability, and cooperation.

    You would think the right wingers would like that, especially since many gays adopt the children that too many don't want, leading to more well raised citizens. Isn't that better than those children being in the foster system?

    Women create the entire labor force. Sympathy is the strongest instinct in human nature. - Charles Darwin

    by splashy on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 05:23:06 PM PST

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