Prop 8 Hits Home

I found out last night that my cousin (my dad's sister's daughter) got married two months ago to her longtime girlfriend. They live in San Francisco where they share custody of my cousin's 9-year-old son with the son's biological father, who my cousin dated until she came out.

I am saddened by the marriage news. Not because I don't believe my cousin should be allowed to marry the person she loves, but because she didn't tell us about it. I worry that she thinks her family in North Carolina can't (or won't) understand and accept her as she is. I worry that she feels she has to keep her life a secret from us.

We are not close with her because we were not close with my father growing up ... but I remember when I was 10 years old and Gloria came out to spend the summer with us. We were so amazed by her - this girl who grew up in the big city with our grandmother in her life. This girl with her stunning looks and (gasp!) hair on her underarms and privates. This girl who used words we'd never heard of before and who introduced us to Super Mario Bros.

The next summer, my sisters and I visited them in San Francisco. That visit went horribly and I have not seen my cousin or my grandmother since. Since that summer, we have all grown up, had children, lived in numerous places and had numerous experiences.

When I found out my cousin was out, I called her - a special call from Boston to San Francisco. I remember feeling a kinship with her because I was spending much of my free time working at the oldest woman's bookstore in the state ... and that store was investing much of its time in a GLBT conference series that I was promoting. I knew that Gloria and I had nothing in common save for DNA, but I wanted to express to her that I was there if she needed me.

We spoke briefly, talked about how we should reconnect, and about how Boston and SF are so much alike. But that was it and that was our last real conversation. Another 8 years have passed and now she and her partner are wife and wife. I would've liked to send something, to recognize and show my support for them.

But now I wonder: Is it too late? Will their marriage be annulled? Does Prop 8 mean that my cousin has lost the right to be a wife? Should I send a congratulatory gift or note for the marriage ... or my condolences that their state stripped their rights?

I listened to Keith Obermann today - and his comment sums up how I'm feeling.


  • Katie Jones

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • Katie Jones

    I was so disappointed that Proposition 8 passed. I voted "no" for the constitution amendment here in GA, but of course that passed, too. I think this is the greatest civil rights injustice of our time and history will judge us harshly here. I think, "How could my grandparents have walked around and thought nothing of "colored" and "whites only" signs?" I bet that's what our grandchildren will think about our generation and gay rights.

Post a Comment

I'd love to hear what you have to say! (If you want an emailed response, be sure to enable email in your Blogger settings -- see a tutorial here.)

Now. Spill it!