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I found this on Towleroad and was moved beyond words.

“Fidelity”: Don’t Divorce… from Courage Campaign on Vimeo.

Earlier this week, one of our dear friends, Chris, wrote an amazing “note” on Facebook that fits so well with this video:

I am writing this for everyone to see because I need everyone who may be on the fence about this issue (or on the other side of the fence) to hear my argument.

I understand that this issue, same-sex marriage, is a hot-button. I understand that there are a lot of folks out there who feel that their faith does not support my marriage. Some feel that while they can support my relationship, the word “marriage” cannot and should not be applied to it. Here’s where I stand. Please read with an open mind and an open heart. Please explore your feelings on the issue in depth and, if appropriate, find new opinions.

Peggy and I have been in a loving and committed relationship since 1993. Our relationship formed, developed and matured as any loving relationship. In 1998, we decided to work towards having children. We spent a great deal of time discussing and thinking deeply and carefully about having children: how we wanted to raise them, what was important to us to pass on to them, what we wanted for them in life, how their lives would be experienced with two mommies, etc. We considered our options and chose to find a friend who would consent to be a part of the child’s life, but without parental rights. Our dear friend, Clint, chose to help us out and we embarked upon a most incredible journey together.

Our family now consists of Peggy and I, two truly beautiful boys (8 and 4), Clint and his partner, Tom. Our children have a phenomenal extended family consisting of my parents, Peggy’s parents and Clint’s parents. All of the brothers and sisters think of themselves as Aunts and Uncles. All the parents think of themselves as grandparents. There is so much love in our lives. We feel VERY blessed. Clint and Tom go on family vacations with us, are there for all family events and Clint makes sure he’s at every parent/teacher conference and school function. We are, in every way, a family.

Peggy and I have worked hard in our lives and now have a beautiful home that we own together. We have been there through surgical procedures, broken bones, crazy hormones, frustrating parenting moments and great joys. Our incomes are combined and we pay all bills out of one pool of money. We have one single checking account with both our names. Our home is in both of our names. We have combined our lives in every way we possibly can.

So here’s the rub. In order to protect our relationship, we have to create an enormous amount of paperwork. A Power of Attorney for finance so that if something happens to one of us, the other can take over our finances. A Power of Attorney for Healthcare so that if something happens to one of us health wise, the other can be with the sick one and make decisions for the sick one. I gave birth to both children, so Peggy had to legally adopt both children so that they would be protected. We’re up to almost a ream of paper when you get into all the copies needed for everyone. So much for going green! And, we need to travel with copies of everything in case something should happen while we’re out of town. Locally, there would almost never be a question, but who knows what happens when you’re in a strange place where no one knows you.

Without our paperwork, we could be denied access to our joint money, be denied access to each other and/or be denied access to our children.

I ask that people remove their faith from the equation when considering this issue. Your faith and my faith may not be the same and the US Constitution protects both of us in following the faith of our choice. Faith cannot be a consideration.

So, with faith removed as a dictator of opinion, I challenge you to show my where my relationship is not marriage. I challenge you to tell me why my family is not deserving of the protection of that single word — “Marriage”.

That one word, religious in initial origin or not, has come to mean something on a governmental level. It means that the most I have to carry is a copy of my marriage certificate (something most opposite-sex couples do not have to do, but we will for while anyway). It means that my children will see that their family is no better or worse than anyone else’s family. It means that everyone recognizes that Peggy and I contribute as much to society as my parents did and do. It recognizes that by loving and committing to one another and caring for each other, we are removing from society the burden of caring for us when we become unable to do so for ourselves. How can any of that be wrong?

So, here’s my plea: search your heart and your soul. In the coming months, as our fight for our rights continues on, would you stand with me and my family, or would you tell us (to our faces) that we are a second-class family? If you find that you would stand with us, please tell your friends. Discuss it in public so others can hear. And when it comes time to vote, follow your heart and “make your mark dark!”

Thank you!

I just don’t understand how anyone can be against two people in love…