So today Jennifer and I were officially married. We had a civil partnership almost 6 years ago to the day but a civil partnership was the previous Labour government’s way of trying to fob off the gay community with a knock-off of the real thing. Today we signed the forms to convert our civil partnership and receive a proper marriage.
As my mother put it, “you have the same rights as your Dad and I now”. She was right. Jennifer and I couldn’t be happier that we have a proper marriage now – our relationship is validated and respected properly by society, which is a wonderful thing.
It’s difficult to put into words what having the same relationship that everyone else can have means when you’re part of a marginalised group. It’s acceptance on a fundamental level and I’ll forever be grateful to David Cameron and the Conservative Party for pushing through marriage equality.
After our conversion, which took about half an hour in total, Jen and I went out for a meal together to celebrate. It wasn’t anything fancy, we just wanted to have a bit of time together to celebrate. It was nice. The waitress asked why Jenny was smiling so much, which Jenny naturally answered: “we just got married”. Cue a long and pleasant conversation with lots of congratulations.
That’s something I’ve seen a lot of over the last few years. The average person in the street is all for gay rights now. When I was growing up in the North East, saying you were gay was tantamount to saying you’d like to be stabbed; it got the same response (either confusion and worry from the person who heard you, or a quick stabbing). Now it gets you people telling you they don’t see why the fight for gay rights isn’t over with already because we are all the same really – and we really are.