Real Stories from Around the World
Love at First Wink
Robbie & Allen in LA
It was the fall of 2008 and after being unable to succeed on Jdate for a number of reasons, Robbie finally decided to create a profile on Match. While surfing around and checking out the site he came across Allen's profile. He liked what he saw and clicked on Allen's photo to learn more. Robbie quickly realized he had seen this cute guy a number of times over the years and decided he was finally ready to "wink".... Read the rest of their story on their website, Love at First Wink
Exiled in Germany
Why Immigration Laws Need to Change
My name is Waleska. I am Personal Chef. I am 39 years old. I currently live in Germany with my wife Fabienne. She is German. I left everything I had to move here. I can't find a job since I don't speak German. We are fighting for our love everyday. She got deported from USA so we can't really go back to the USA. Even if she did not got deported, immigration laws will not allow her to stay in the USA for longer that 3 months at a time. We want to go back to the USA one day. This blog is to help us share our story so that we can open people's minds and let them realize that our rights are being violated everyday by the USA by not allowing me to bring my wife back home with me so we can have a better future. I had to choose between my country or my love. Love is love. No country should decide who you love. Please help us legalize gay marriage federally in the USA! Immigration Equality for all!
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An International Couple Works to Be Together
Our son was sick of staring people! He figured he would make a statement so people would stop wondering.....isn't he awesome? He is 14 years old, he has one mom in the USA and the other one in the Netherlands (Amsterdam) Europe. We got married in Iowa on August 1st 2009 and we're waiting for laws to change to be together. I am trying to get home with my wife and our son since 2005 now......5 weeks out of a year we see each other. Our love for each other and our son is keeping us going! But they're not making it easy on our family life!!
Now We're the Smith-Taylors
A Wedding Update from Stephanie and Melissa
Wow, the day had finally come on friday June 11th 2010 Stephanie and Melissa Became the Smith-Taylors. The day was nerve wrecking as we all got up at 7 am. The day was cloudy and all of us were worried whether it would rain on us or not. Groomsmen outside setting table cloths and un wrapping flute glasses for the toast. I was in the house nervous as always wanting to see Stephanie. We did it traditional style where the two getting married do not see each other on the wedding day. talk about stressful! Time was going way to fast, before you know it I was getting make-up and hair done, then next step he dress. The ceremony said "count down begins, are you ready" me I opened my eyes took a shot and said "now I am". Let me tell you, talk about an outter body experience. Pictures were takin as we walked towards the other house to await the walk-in. I can hear people outside talking to Stephanie and I could Imagine she was nervous as well.
I look at pictures now of Stephanie's face Before the walk-in and its excited and ready to see me.I could only imagine what she had been doing all day to make things perfect for us. racing around trying not to see me through the windows , although she said she tried but failed. lol
Stephanie was waiting at the alter, a garden of blissfulness outside, the wedding party walked down to "Somewhere over the rainbow" by Iz and my father and I walked down to "You got a way with me" by Shania Twain. Our first dance was "At last" by my Favorite Etta James. I sang to her "Come Rain or Come Shine" by Judy Garland! The Night was still stressful but the whole Place was tranformed. Although half the guest who said they would come didnt those who did we are thankful for. We now know their place and our place in their hearts. I married my best friend.
The "Soon to Be" Taylors
From Stepanie and Melissa
This September I got engaged to the my best friend. We have been together for 2 years and on her birthday she decided to make it official. I have not been happier, I have been given a gift that not only can I share with friends but hopefully with family. Our wedding date is June 11th, and everything has not been all fun a giggles. As expected we have not had support from some family, it's been hard on both of us.
Let me start by saying that my father is gay also, my dad's family has been okay with how we live our life until recently. Lets just say everyone is not on speaking terms. This breaks my heart, I thought finally I get to have a relationship with them and steph has never experienced grandparents. Their support ment everything to us and to know things were said intentionally to hurt one another.
The second thing is my mother does not even want to hear about it. So I have lost the back up of grandparents on my father's side and my own mother. I knew that with this life not everyone is going to be okay with how i live it. I want to say now that all of the hurt, the tears, the anger for no reason, Steph and I could not be happier. It's not legal here in california but it's still legal in my heart.
Our Engagement Story
It was Sept. 4th, Steph's birthday, And I invited her friends to Friday's In San Bernardino. I wanted everything to go right. We started eating at about 7 p.m, And I had noticed Steph kept moving around and her hands were clammy. I personally thought it was because she was excited everyone showed up on time, and she was just mingaling. What a great dinner it was. I was feeling kinda awkward our friends kept looking back at me smiling, and me I just thought it was because I was in charge of things. Dinner had finished everyone finishing their drinks tipping and paying the bill excited to part with friends and take Steph to a movie. We walked outside had a cig and conversated. Everyone wanted to know where we were going next. ha ha I told them fine we can party at the house byob. We start heading towards the cars and I saw ours. It had balloons and writing, I could not make it out from afar so we of course ventured towards it. I said " aww babe how cute someone wrote something on the car, happy........would you marry me?" I just about died. I turned around everyone had a smile and a camera. I movied it when the girl bursts into tears. she held me and said everything will be oka, but moochie I have something to tell you. she told me what she felt, and I get this nervous laugh, i couldnt stop crying and giggling. She got on her knee and asked me for her hand in marriage. I said yes. She told me that she had already asked my father ahead of time for my hand and that I should call him. they brought me flowers red and white as she wore all black (our wedding colors). It was the best birthday and the best night of our lives.
Allyce & Jana's Sacred Love
In Brisbane, Australia
Being gay isn’t a choice I didn’t wake up one morning and go “oh yeah today I think I’m going to be gay” you just know, people don’t ask straight people “well how do u know your straight?” They just know.
just as any straight person can’t chose who they fall In love with, Jana and I didn’t chose falling in love with Jana just happened there is NO right or wrong in love, love is love;
Jana and I got engaged in November this year. Jana is an amazing and wonderful finance and will be an even better wife. Jana and I alongside any gay, lesbian, straight or anything in between have just as much right to legally “tie the knot”
Jana is the only person I can see myself with and I should have the right to make my marriage legal I am a normal person and so is my finance we do normal couple things like go to the movies and go out for dinner and we as any other couple plan a future together.
we make each other happy and that is all that matters just the same in any other “normal” couple. The commitment and meaning behind marriage isn’t about your sexually it’s about making a promise to the person you love so deeply and it’s a way of affirming that promise in front of friends and family. Marriage is a sacred union between two people that love each other. Jana and I love each other what is not sacred about that?
Matt & Alex's Wedding as Photographed by Brian Hargreaves
In Ottawa, Canada
Last weekend was a big one in the BH Photography camp–firstly, we booked two fabulous weddings back to back (Friday evening and Saturday) and the latter was our first same sex ceremony. We were both nervous and excited, because if you were to meet Matt and Alex, they are two very savvy guys who were planning the party of the year! That being said, our “first time” nerves were quickly settled at our consultation over coffee when the guys eagerly gave us some amazing ideas for our own wedding in October. Matt & Alex chose the Britannia Yacht Club as their venue and the staff did an amazing job! Every last detail was taken care of, however there was a rumour of one tablecloth being upside down. It was only a rumour…
Whether you agree with it or not, everybody should have the equal right to be married. Luckily for Matt & Alex living in Canada gives them this right. All of the guests showed their support for equal marriage rights by wearing a simple white knot from WhiteKnot.org. See all the photos here.
Katie & Keith's Wedding
From North Dakota
We got engaged in July 2008. As details for our wedding started coming together, our excitement about becoming a married couple grew. We knew, from the day of our wedding on, once we introduced one another as “husband” and “wife,” people would automatically know that we loved each other so much, and that we proclaimed our love and commitment to one another in a public ceremony. We also knew that this commitment would be widely recognized by family and friends, and importantly, also by our employers, hospitals, the government, insurance companies, etc. We realized, more than ever before, how saddened, disenfranchised, and angry we would feel if someone told us we couldn’t participate in the full process of marriage. We happen to be a heterosexual couple, but we couldn’t stomach the thought that if we were a homosexual couple, we could be told that we didn’t have the right to marry!
On our wedding day in August 2009, we wanted to be aware that we were lucky people, and that we were enjoying rights that so many people were wrongly denied. We both wore white knots throughout our wedding. Our bridal party participated in showing support for marriage equality too--all of our bridemaids and groomsmen wore white knots. We also had a heart-shaped bowl filled with white knots available for guests near the front of the ceremony site. We were so touched to see how many of our guests wore white knots. We were also happy to hear from various guests that the white knots, and what they signify, stimulated conversation about marriage equality.
Thank you, White Knot, for giving us such an excellent way to show support and stimulate conversation about marriage equality on our wedding day!
Nick & Ben's Wedding
These photos were taken at Cal Anderson Park, named for Washington's first openly gay state legislator. Nick and Ben used White Knots on their groomsmaids' bouquets at their recent wedding. Congratulations Nick and Ben!
Kate & Nicole's Wedding
From Kate in California
As one of the incredibly lucky 18,000 legally married same-sex couples in California, we feel a responsibility to our community to fight until marriage equality becomes Federal law in the United States. So, when we first heard about the "White Knot" campaign we were ecstatic. "Finally!" we thought. "A campaign that doesn't revolve around a specific state or campaign or ballot measure." We immediately emailed the site to our friends and relatives across the country and encouraged them to share the site with their friends.
Then, as our 1 yr. anniversary - and the date of our wedding - approached, we decided to take the knots a step further. We ordered a white knot kit, cut and tied and pinned for a few hours, and just like that we had our wedding favors. We pinned the knots onto our name cards and during our thank you toast, explained what they were, what to do with them, and how to learn more about the campaign. The knots were a huge hit! And in the days after the wedding, we received a number of emails from friends that had worn the knots home and struck up conversations with people along the way that wanted to know about the white knot. Just as we'd hoped, the conversation about marriage equality was spreading.
Two months have passed since the wedding and we continue to wear our white knots every day. Because nothing compares to being civilly married. And because everyone should have the right to tie the knot.
Small Minds in a Small Town
From Anna in Australia
My name is Anna. I am a 14 year old bisexual from Australia. I live in a small, close-minded community. It is very racist and intolerant due to its size and lack of exposure to multi-culturalism (it is predominantly Anglo-Saxon).
My mother used to make me go to church, as it was a good "family time" experience. I hated going to church, as I've never seen eye-to-eye with Christianity, although I do support and recognise that freedom of belief is fundamentally important to Australian society.
Even though I am not personally religious, I accept other's right to be religious. This is how I hope the world will eventually be about GLBTIQ: though not everyone is the same sexual orientation, we should accept other's rights to be that orientation.
However, I stopped going to church once they preached about the "wrongness of evolution" and the "sin of homosexuality" - in the same sermon. They talked about how the "Devil" tempted people into believing and teaching homosexuality and evolution were right, how every single scientist in the world was part of a huge conspiracy to convince us that the earth was millions of years older than it actually was, and how homosexuals endangered and vilified our society, and the equality we'd worked for.
This quote from the sermon stuck in my brain:
"Homosexuals are not real people. Homosexuality is a front, put up by devils and corrupted souls to undermine the foundations of society as we know it. They are the ones who convince people to murder, and kill - they are the ones who are behind these so called 'terrorist' attacks. They are holding our world to ransom."
I could not believe it. I was so tempted to storm out of that church right there and then. It is very well for people to have their beliefs, but to pin murder and terrorism on a group already vilified by "God" to be "sinners" was unthinkable for me.
Please do not misunderstand: I support people's right to have beliefs. I will (reluctantly, I must admit) accept the statement above as someone's belief and their right to have it. But I will NOT stand by and watch people in my community vilified and discriminated against by this. Imagine, if you would, a community of 100 people. Let's swap the figures around, say 94 of them are GLBTIQ. The other 6 are straight. These six would preach about their right to individuality, recognition, acceptance or rejection of religion, freedom, and acceptance, just the same as the GLBTIQ community does now. They would ask for the same rights, the same equity, etc. The only thing is, it's the other way around.
Sadly, it is this kind of ideal that permeates the small community I live in. Did you know that we do not even have a single GLBTIQ support group? Not a single GLBTIQ support group for some +45,000 people.
I *know* there are GLBTIQ people in this community - I've met them, I'm friends with them, I'm one of them. I know one transsexual friend, a pre-op FtM, who goes to an all-girls school. His mother laughed when he came out! Every day, unnatural, wrong things are happening to him - he's growing breasts, having a period. I cannot imagine the hell he goes through. He's already tried to self-harm, and he has already tried to commit suicide.
My mother won't let me start this much-needed support group because, I quote: 'It's a total waste of your time, Anna! They're a dead end, an absolute minority... I don't want you around people like that, it's unhealthy. You have an unhealthy interest in that sort of thing. It's not right, it's not good, it's not healthy. I won't allow it.'
I have gay friends, I have transsexual friends, I have straight friends: and I know ALL of them, although from different races, religions, families, communities, and even countries, support GLBTIQ rights to equity.
From Sara in Pittsfield, MA
We each wore a White Knot symbolizing marriage equality. Our minister Marlyn was very eloquent in her descriptions and message of the importance of marriage and equality. We could not have asked for a better day, better minister, and anymore love. It was a day we will never forget and will be forever grateful.
Pride Scotia: Stonewall's World Impact
From Kelvin in Glasgow, Scotland
Kevin Holdsworth (pictured above wearing his White Knot) spoke at Pride Scotia. Below are some excerpts. His words demonstrate how the call for complete equality is a worldwide and universal movement. Read the full text of his speech on his blog.
This afternoon, I’m proud to stand alongside Patrick Harvey and other Scottish Parliamentarians. Together, they have recently made Scotland safer for those of us who are gay. The passing of the hate crimes legislation is a huge milestone. It is great news.
But what I want to say today is that we want more.
This afternoon, the LGBT Network and the Equality network are urging people to sign a petition to the Scottish Parliament to change the law even more. Before you go today, make sure you sign the petition calling on the Scottish Parliament to allow gay and lesbian couples to get married. It is one of the next steps we are campaigning for.
I want every gay couple to be able to walk down the street holding hands if they want to do so.
And I want every gay couple to be able to walk down the aisle holding hands if they want to too.
We can make that happen. We can get our parliamentarians to change the law.
Today you will also see people wearing something new. The white knot. Its a campaigning symbol that people are taking up all over the world in this campaign for equal marriage rights. A simple white ribbon tied in a knot is being worn in America and all over the world. A white knot because we believe that every couple should have the right to tie the knot.
A Viet Nam Vet and His Partner of 30 Years
From Mike in New York City
I'm a gay sixty-one year old Viet Nam Veteran, a 9/11-Ground Zero Survivor and a lover and partner with my better half, Joey Infnate for thirty years now. I don't feel a threat to the institution of marriage. I'm not trying to "change" or "convert" anyone into being gay. That is something you are born into, just like race, creed or nationality. Sexual orientation is as natural as breathing. Anyone who says otherwise is in La-la-land. Using the bible to condemn and damn is wrong. Judging others is wrong. Denying human rights and dignity are wrong. Self-righteousness and hypocrisy are wrong. Forcing one's religion and or moral code on others - wrong! Love, acceptance, tolerance, brotherhood, kindness, goodness, humanity and generosity are all right. No one is perfect or better than another. All are equal in the eyes of our Creator. All humans need forgiveness and understanding. What is so terrible about wanting to marry the person you're in love with, especially if it's a long-term, committed and sincere relationship? I am not attempting to undermine the institution of marriage, but to embrace and honor it legally. I don't see how my shared love with my mate of thirty years is going to interrupt the flow of democracy or freedom we are all supposed to enjoy equally. Hating me and those of like minds and hearts is a toxic waste of energy and time. Spending fortunes and campaigning to impede our rights is senseless and a waste of positive energy and precious time. Why not channel all this revenue into helping instead of hurting? Just imagine all the people who could be saved by that anti-gay funding.. In the end, I'm not harming anyone, nor trying to persuade them to try my lifestyle. That is entirely someone else's business, not mine. All I want is my best friend, supporter and companion in life on earth to be my legal spouse. If it is wrong, then I wholeheartedly stand guilty as charged.
Giant White Knot in DC
Designed by Nicolas Shi
I found out about your organization just few days before the Washington DC Pride and since not many people knew about you here in DC I decided to decorate our house/studio (along the parade route) with a huge White Knot which got a lot of attention. We'll see you for the March on Washington in October.
Our Wedding in Northampton, MA
From Ed and George
We were married by J.M.Sorrell, JP at the Botanical Gardens, Smith College in Northampton, Mass. With us are George's sisters, Jean Warren and Elsie Huffmann. It was a beautiful fulfillment of our dream to show our love and devotion to each other.