Yes, My Marriage Is Very Real

by Heather Sexton
Heather Sexton

Love is a basic human right.

Love does not politicize, it does not hate and it cannot be bought. Love does not care where you’re from, what religion you practice or what color your skin is. Love is as complicated and as simple as it gets.

How terrible would it be for me to tell you your love means nothing? For me to tell you your love is a joke, it’s not real and doesn’t mean anything? What if I told you your love was inferior to mine? That you had no right to feel it and even less right to share it. What would you say?

I have talked about it, shared it, and been completely open about my relationship with my wife. I have shared struggles and joys. I have shared the ups and downs of the first years of marriage like anyone else. My marriage is just like any other. No one has the right to say otherwise. I don’t care who you pray to, where you spend your Sundays or who you think gave you the right to judge my marriage. My marriage is real.

I didn’t marry in a church, but not everyone does. I didn’t consult a priest before exchanging vows, but not everyone does. I didn’t ask anyone whether the love we have is righteous; no one should have to. But, even after the supreme court of the United States granted me the right to marry the woman whom I love with every cell in my body, I find myself having to still defend it. I am told I don’t have the same rights as any other married couple and that my marriage is not a “traditional” marriage.

No one stopped me when I was 18 years old and not even legal to drink, but able to sign a marriage certificate. This holy and sacred institution that allows a kid to have a legal and recognized marriage but discriminates against a 32-year-old who doesn’t fit the “traditional” profile of marriage. Tell me how that makes sense, because it does not. Gay marriage is not recognized by all BUT marriage between two kids are okay because it’s between a “man” and a “woman.” The disconcerting truth that people use the bible to give them moral authority to decide and dictate the rights of others is unacceptable.

My marriage is just that — a marriage. My marriage should not be defined by your religion. It’s just that, your religion. I don’t judge your marriage or when you divorce. I don’t scoff at your beliefs. I don’t roll my eyes when you pray. I don’t tell you your less than because your different from me. Being happy and being in love is a very personal thing. It has nothing to do with your religion or your superiority. I just want the same rights and abilities any heterosexual couple has because that’s basic human decency.

If you have to use your religion as a basis to prove your morals and faith then, that’s a faith I want no part of. But, I will tell you, if I’m judged by God for who I love, then I will guarantee you will be judged for how you hate.