Thursday, October 11, 2012

Ask Joaquin: Why Are You Getting Married?

With all the wedding planning, we've been getting a lot of questions about our marriage.  Due to the sensitive nature of most of them, I've referred to those asking as "anonymous."

From Anonymous:  Why are you getting married if it's not even legal in Utah?

Ever since I was a kid I was taught that when two people loved each other they got married.  Sure, the "two people" were probably explained to me as "a man and a woman," but that didn't stop me from making the blonde Ken doll and the brunette Ken doll ditch Barbie and go marry each other.  So when I grew up years later and realized I was gay, that notion of marrying the one I love didn't go away.  And when Brian asked me to marry him some three years ago, I said "yes."  It just seemed to be the natural progression of things.  You meet, you fall in love, you get married.

And although same-sex marriage is legal in the state of New York, where Brian and I are tying the knot, I am well aware that our marriage license won't mean anything in the state of Utah.  So why bother?  Well, because it means something to us.  It means a lifelong commitment.  It means the start of a family.  It means all of the things that marriage means to straight couples.  Nobody goes into marriage saying, "I'm only doing this for tax purposes and hospital visitation rights."  No, they do it for love.  And while those are the sorts of benefits that will go unrecognized here in Utah, Brian and I will still know in our hearts that we are married.

Besides, we don't plan on living in Utah forever and we will most likely find ourselves in one of the six states that does recognize same-sex marriage someday.  And as the fight for marriage equality continues, I am optimistic that more and more states will embrace it in the future.  The world is changing.  France is on the brink of legalizing same-sex marriage within the next few weeks and not long ago Mexico did the same, joining Canada and ten other countries.

From Anonymous:  Is your marriage some kind of political statement?

Considering it's an election season and Brian's Facebook statuses are hyper-political as of late, I can see where one might get that idea.  However, this is nothing of the sort.  As I stated in the answer above, Brian and I are getting married because we love each other and that's what people in love do!  Far from trying to stir up controversy, I would say our desire to be married is probably the most conservative and traditional thing about us.

From Anonymous:  I love you guys, but my religious views are in opposition to same-sex marriage.  How do I reconcile this?

I'm going to answer this question with a bit of a story.  There's a member of Brian's extended family that expressed a similar sentiment.  She said she loved us and enjoyed our visits to her home, but at the same time worried that by attending our wedding reception she was condoning same-sex marriage which she finds contrary to her religious beliefs.  She took her concerns to the Lord in prayer, and came to the conclusion that Jesus would have gone if he were in her shoes.  We were happy to hear she was able to find a way to reconcile her desire to be supportive with her belief system.

But as much as I would love everyone to take that route, I understand that not everyone will come to the same conclusion.  It's heartbreaking that such a joyous and happy day in my life can bring about negativity... but it has to some degree.  Feeling a little down, my sister sent a text message reassuring me that no matter who may or may not be in attendance, "God sure will be."


Laurel said...

Beautifully stated, as always, Jack. I appreciated the way you addressed the questions which many people have, but are often afraid to ask, so as not to offend. This is a sensitive topic for many, and your respect for their feelings, I believe, will do more to help people understand, and even come to support then many of the frustrated posts or angry conversations I have seen in regards to similar situations. It's a hard road for us humans to get to the point where we learn we can love others who do not have our same viewpoints or life philosophies enough to sit down with them and celebrate with them. I liken it to the fact my Grandparents used to enjoy a glass of wine or gin before bed (and often enjoyed such glasses to the point of tipsyness when celebrating). I do not believe alcohol is good for the body. I don't buy it for people because I feel that strongly. However, I would never once think that I shouldn't sit down to dinner with them and their filled wine glass, drive them home when they needed a designated driver or love them because the Cold Duck was in the fridge. They did not share my opinion of alcohol. I know that is a feeble attempt to explain where I am coming from, and I am not trying to say that marriage and alcohol are the same thing, by any means. I am just hoping to say we all have different views of life, and unless someone is trying to get us to drink poison or smuggle drugs or kill someone, we can love and support those who might think/believe differently. (we can still love those people, but we probably don't need to get involved ha ha). Love you guys.

Joaquin the Chihuahua said...

Thanks for the comment, Laurel. I'm glad you still broke bread at your grandparents' table, despite your differences. Oh, and I promise not to get you involved in my next murder. ;)

Rube & Rocio said...

I receive your invite and i won't be able to attend, no because of religious views, politics, etc. just know if i could i would love to be there. I know how it feels to get married and not having anybody you care about with you besides your spouse obviously. I wish you the best and longlife happyness.

Joaquin the Chihuahua said...

Thanks, Rocio! I didn't expect you to be able to come because of the distance, but I'm very grateful to know that you're supportive. You've been a great friend.


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