And 2 days later I still had to mark the “single” box on my jury duty intake form.
No, we didn’t break up (ohthankGod!). It’s just that I was sworn to honesty, sitting in that court of law filling out my form … and legally I am not married. Nor divorced. Nor separated. So that left only one option: “single.”
Honestly, for the most part I don’t think that much about the fact that I’m not able to legally marry my partner… because I still call and consider her my wife.
But yesterday when I had to check “single” the tears welled up.
Not so much at the unfairness (in my opinion) of it all, but even more about feeling like I was being forced to NOT honor the truth of our relationship. Like when I was first coming out and still hid behind the phrase “my friend Sandy” then “my roommate Sandy.” Yes, she was and is both of those, but good lord, she is so much MORE.
(On the other hand, it is kinda funny to use the “code” with other gay folks, asking “wait… are they roommates or ‘quote roommates’???” )
There’s another side to this, though. Yes, we still have a long way to go with GLBTQ equality, and yes, it totally sucks that if it would ever (please god no) come down to any legal battles around decision-making rights for each other, our “marriage” would be diminished to a mere set of quotation marks… what doesn’t suck is that for the most part I have the freedom to live a looks-and-feels-like-married life with my partner.
Enough so that when I have to mark “single” on those @}#*^! forms my heart breaks a little. For myself… and for others who — in any situation, for any reason — are not given the option to publicly claim who they really are.
May we all today… and every day… be touched by and grateful for those who know exactly who we are and allow us to publicly own that.