Marriage Project, Day 16

There is so much here. About family. About love. Meet my guest for today’s Marriage Project:

Marriage equality is just too long overdue. American society has changed its thinking on many ideas once believed to be controversial – Women’s right to vote, marriage of interracial couples, the end of segregation and recently the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. It is time to grant freedom and choice to gay couples too. And their families.

My father is gay. When I was young, I was truly scared for his safety and mine. Without him telling me to, I knew to be very careful about who I shared information with and only invited a handful of my most trusted friends to our home. Mostly I kept quiet, even when nasty words were scrawled on the Girl’s Bathroom mirror at my High School. I wasn’t ashamed of my family but 25 years ago nobody was talking. The most common reaction when I shared my family’s story was disbelief that a gay man could have a child.

Today it’s not nearly so difficult to share my family’s story, but it is hard for my kids. They don’t understand why marriage has to be a boy and a girl. They have a Grandpa and a Grandpa. I struggle to explain why two people in love, that have always been a part of their lives, cannot marry in the eyes of the State. For now, I explain that a slip of paper isn’t what really matters in love but I am fearful again for my father.

He is elderly now and he and his partner don’t have the same financial protections that many couples do.

They should.

And children shouldn’t need to worry about their parents and grandparents.

Liz

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