It has been both interesting and rewarding to see that this blog has followers, and that it is starting to generate some interest outside of the circle of friends and family that we originally created this for. We wanted this blog in part to record our memories as we embark on this journey of putting on a wedding, but also to serve as a resource. Interestingly, the blog has become a strange cross roads of different friends who read different bits and pieces for different reasons.
One ongoing thread involves my family, who can’t quite get to grips with what it means to embrace their gay son, and all the trappings that come with having to once again deal with issues that had been hidden under a thin veil of begrudging acceptance…but which have now been stirred by the upcoming nuptials. And interwoven with my saga are Chris’s thoughts about being both gay and Christian, and how the search for acceptance among family, friends, and communities has impacted his life. Then of course there are the practicalities of actually putting on the wedding, and our own feelings (and friends’ insights) about what is tradition, what is convention, and what it means to buy into the wedding industry as opposed to doing our own thing, or at least our vision/interpretation of what would be viewed as conventional and traditional, and trying to do things on a budget. (In essence, we are the most offbeat of Offbeat Brides, especially since we are two dudes).
But beneath all of these interwoven threads that form the tapestry of our blog and our lives, is our underlying desire to be both out and proud, and to potentially be a resource for other couples (both gay and straight) who have found themselves in similar situations–however tangential–or those who may be undergoing journeys similar to what we have dealt with in our past. And that’s why it brings me great joy to see that the interest in this blog, and in our wedding, is gaining some traction beyond just our circle of friends and family.
The first outside inquiry was from a community journalism student who wrote this nice story for Islington Now, an online local news website. And the title of the piece was “A gay wedding story starts in Islington”. And just this week, another journalist, who works for the weekly printed Islington Gazette will be interviewing us for a story on the ongoing gay marriage debate which has been causing some rifts within the conservative Tory party. And furthermore, a friend of mine who is studying for a degree in psychology in California has decided to interview us as a case study for his course.
And who knows what additional traction our story will have? But that is why it is important for all of us who are otherwise marginalized by society (and yes, I think as a gay male Chinese-American expat looking to get married to a gay white male Brit from a conservative Christian background, we do qualify as forming part of the margin of society-although there are of course many more who are even more marginalized) to stand and be counted. Some day, it is our hope that true marriage equality will happen so that gays and lesbians in all countries will be able to marry exactly as heterosexual couples–both in name and with the full rights of marriage. But in the meantime, until that occurs, we have no choice but to settle for second best. But we do demand to at least be counted. Our gay wedding story does indeed start in Islington (well technically, on the Isle of Wight where Chris and I first met)–but we certainly hope that the story will extend far beyond the borders of Islington!