married for love

Why I Married For Love & The Supreme Court Should Too

The Supreme Court is considering gay marriage as a national issue through June of this year. There is heavy debate over the constitution’s definition of marriage (in addition to the dictionary’s) alongside the views of 2015’s newlyweds.

After reading Showtime for gay marriage among so many other bits of media, the defense of “tradition” from John Bursch, the lawyer representing the state of Michigan struck a nerve:

Marriage would become unmoored from its raison d’être: raising children. A child who grows up “believing that marriage is about keeping that couple bound to that child forever” might fare better than a child whose parents’ marriage “is more about their emotional commitment to each other,” he said.

If your parents are still together, ask if they hold an emotional commitment to each other. For those whose parents are divorced, consider this: If an “emotional commitment” to each other was held to a higher priority, perhaps would-be Mom and Dad could have seen they weren’t right for each other, earlier on. I don’t mean to be crass here, but after growing up around families that tried to “stay together for the kids,” those broken relationships consistently ended in battle.

Please, show me how the pillars of marriage from centuries past still hold their weight today.

* * *

As a newly married woman (we’ve been wearing those rings for 9 wonderful days), I would like to make an announcement: I married for love. Not to procreate, not to proclaim or honor a specific family or faith, but to celebrate the indescribable bond between my husband and I.

I knew I always wanted to marry for love, but for nearly a decade, I placed that self-known-truth on the shelf. I lived and learned and in the end spent year after year with the wrong guy. He never wanted to marry — period. It was a philosophical stance, devoid of emotion, which primarily disagreed with the dogged tradition of the ceremonial signing of papers. We never wanted kids, so why should we get married? We owned two companies and house. We were already doing “the things we were supposed to do.” What’s the point?

I was young and successful, and therefore dumb (turning 30 yields great clarity). But I knew I wanted passion, affection, and genuine love in my life. I just needed to face it and embrace my own definition of companionship.

When I met my husband, I knew I could “rest-of-my-life” with him within two months of dating. We had this heightened state of emotional connection we could only refer to as “The Thing.”

The Thing would literally take your breath away —you felt it in your chest, holding onto it with both hands, for fear it would leave.

The Thing would only allow me to sheepishly say “…hi” the first few months rather than “I love you.”

The Thing also prevented me from keeping my cool during last week’s ceremony as I sniffled and choked through my vows. (As a strong-willed, career-driven woman, this is still as shocking to me as it was to all the tissues and sleeves on the lawn that evening.)

But here we are, 13 states away from allowing all of America’s citizens to celebrate their love legally in the year 2015. It saddens me to think that some of us effected by The Thing continue to worry if we’ll be able to help our partner in a time of need, or provide for the family we’ve always dreamed of.

Therefore, I’d like to throw in a vote for redefining what marriage means to this country in 2015. If we believe in the love we have for one another, the rest will follow (and SHOULD follow). Let us welcome marriage across all sexes, because in the end, our emotional commitment is what holds couples and their families together.

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