I was very pleased today to hear that the first same sex marriages in England and Wales will take place in late March. This is much earlier than we expected and it’s great to hear.
What was less great to hear, however, is the delay in allowing those of us already in civil partnerships to convert those partnerships into marriage. This apparently is not going to happen until the end of 2014. People may say, what’s the hurry? People like Jonathan, my “civil partner” and I, have all the rights of a married couple anyway. So why can’t we be patient?
The answer is, that we have been patient for quite a long time. All the reasons that were discussed at great length in the Parliamentary debates and public consultations about equal marriage, civil partnership and marriage are separate and not equal. Jonathan and I have been looking forward to celebrating joining the heterosexual majority in an institution which is the gold standard for human relationships for a very long time. We had even pencilled in a date in the summer for the celebration of the conversion, relying on the government’s assurance that marriage would be implemented by June.
I know that there are many greater injustices in the world, but we feel hard done by. All that the government needs to do is create some very simple forms and have the orders prescribing the forms approved by both houses of Parliament. I think I could draft the forms in about two hours flat.
We have been waiting a long time and could Maria Miller please get on with it.
We will do the only two things we can: support Stonewall and write to our MP. Perhaps others would like to do the same.
After all, our female friends are desperate to buy their hats!