It's Freedom to Marry Week again. Which also signals the run-up to my anniversary. So the stars are aligned to get me thinking about all of this again. Last year, I wrote from the comfort of a country where my wife and I are legally married. This year, I find myself in a position that's more difficult to define. We have moved to a state where there is no recognition for same-sex marriages*, where the question of same-sex relationships is not yet settled. When I stop to think about this, my anxiety level rises. Sure Trillian and I have a bunch of paperwork that does its best to approximate the legal relationship granted by marriage, but that doesn't mean we won't run into trouble if during a crisis we run into someone who has a problem with our relationship. Part of our willingness to move here without defined legal rights at the state level is due to the fact that we know Trillian's parents would step in and use their clout to put things back on track.
Dana at Mombian brings up another side of the issue, something that GLBT parents know they will have to face at some time or another: how to answer our children's questions. Because of Scooter's different perspective on the world, he is not particularly aware of marriage. He did once ask where his daddy was, but was at a point where he was satisfied with a run through of the different shapes families can take.
But this also means that when he does ask if we're married that he'll probably be looking for a simple answer, reassurance that we are tied together. Not, "Well we're married in Canada, but the United States don't recognize it, except in Massachusetts, so we're not legally married here in Springfield, but we do love each other very much." Don't get me wrong, until he's asking about the nuances specifically, I will answer with a simple, "Yes, we are married." I can even add, "You were at our wedding, running around and trying to play with the stereo."
*Massachusetts would have been our first choice if we could have ignored the draw of living near Trillian's parents and the great schools here.