Thursday, September 16, 2010

i'm a little feminist/equalitarian, hear me not get legally married...

okay, so as you all know, saturday is our wedding!!! but it will be a little different from most weddings. you see, while we will be making a life-long commitment to each other in the eyes of God, our friends and family, we won't be signing a marriage certificate. we believe that love is a right for all men and women, no matter what their religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, or ethnicity. unfortunately, marriage is currently being defined and regulated by our government in a way that goes against our values. while we can't wait to start our life together, we are not ready to be a part of an institution with which we do not agree.

let me stop right here and stress the fact that these are just the decisions that we came to for us, and we have no problem with anyone else who are married or planning on getting married. in fact, most of our friends are blissfully married and we couldn't be happier for them! truly, i am not against other people getting married or loving marriage, we just decided to take a different route with our commitment at this point in our lives.

i had been thinking about the institution of marriage for a long time now. i mean, after living in san francisco with many gay and lesbian friends and family members, how could i not? i think it's so sad that my loved ones who have been with their partners for 10, 15 years are still told that their love doesn't count.
i've also come to embrace the fact that i'm a total feminist at heart, and i am one of those people who doesn't like being a part of institutions in general. i can't wait to be self-employed, my voter registration lists me as "no party," and i left my religion to experience spirituality on my own. all of this has made me shy away from the institution of marriage and seek out alternatives to our form of commitment.

so it's because of these reasons that dannon and i will not be signing a marriage license. yes, we will be having a wedding. yes we are committing to each other for the rest of our lives. and yes we are taking that vow incredibly seriously. we will be bound for life and there's no getting out of that for us. instead of a marriage license, we'll be registering as domestic partners with the city of los angeles. now outside of san francisco and los angeles, the government won't acknowledge our union because state and federal law mandates that you have to be a same-sex couple or a heterosexual couple over 65 years old. does this make sense to you? me neither! but los angeles and san francisco says that people, no matter who they are, should have choices.

most people i've talked to seem pretty supportive. the main concerns people have for us is the matter of taxes and the ability to make decisions if something happens. luckily, living in los angeles, we'll have every right to each other and our belongings in case something happens. the only issue is that we won't get as big of a tax break. but for now, we're happy with missing out on a little cash in exchange for following our hearts. once in a while people also ask if i think this will make our union less secure, as if that piece of paper is the magic key to keeping people together. but really, with 50% of marriages ending in divorce, i don't think it's really all that great at providing security. to us, our decision to get committed is absolutely for the rest of our lives regardless of which form we file, and we think it's so exciting and romantic that we get to keep choosing each other over and over, year after year, because we want to stay committed, not because a piece of paper tells us to.

now let me stress once more that i am by no means saying people who belong to various institutions including marriage are bad or wrong or anything else. i highly support everyone to take whatever path is right for them. these are just some of the decisions i've come to for me, and i'm sharing them with all of you just as a way to show that there are options in life. i grew up in a very small community of people and it was so easy to think that i had to make the same choices as them because that was all there was. it was so profound to me to get out of that bubble and experience other cultures and ways of doing things. what? you can put french fries inside your sandwiches?! {yes san francisco changed my world} if you are happy with your marriage or desperately want to be married to your special someone, i say hooray!!! that's awesome!

we'll see what the future holds for us and our beliefs. they're constantly being refined and modified as we grow as people. but for now, dannon and i are so super excited to be taking the plunge as life partners!