Realizations about Relationships

Saturday night and we’re stuck at home with an empty refrigerator.  Since returning on Monday, I’ve cooked a few times, buying only the ingredients I needed for those meals and leaving us minimally stocked.  Another rainy season downpour has been falling for the past ninety minutes and based on the slowness with which the thunder and lightning are passing by, I reckon we’ll be stuck here for a while longer.

This has given me the opportunity to complete all my wedding thank-you cards, which now only need to be stamped and mailed.  In doing so, I’ve had the opportunity to reflect on how lucky Tawn and I are to have so many friends and family members who really support us as a couple and, beyond simply “accepting” us as a couple, really celebrate our relationship.  It is nice to have all that support.

Whenever I attend a wedding, I’m always mindful of the fact that the witnesses, the friends and family who attend the service, have a very important role to play.  I recall at one wedding that the officiant spoke to the congregation about our role.  That message really resonated with me; I think we do have a responsibility to support and encourage the relationships that our friends and family members are in.  Relationships are tender things that need nurturing.

Today we met four visiting Singaporean friends, two couples, for lunch at the Hyatt Erawan Tea Room.  These are both long-term couples, still we were surprised when one of them remarked how they considered us an inspiration to them.  Despite having been together for so long, they haven’t the family support (nor the political support there) to get married, let alone have a formal commitment ceremony.

Tawn mentioned on the way home that many friends we saw on this recent trip, as well as friends who contacted us online after our wedding, remarked that we’re the first gay couple they know who has married.  It is kind of odd, as we don’t consider ourselves pioneers by any stretch of the imagination.

Thinking of our friends who are gay and lesbian, we know many couples, some who are married and many who have been together for ages.  Perhaps because that’s what I see a lot of, I’ve forgotten what a rarity that is?

While settling down as a couple isn’t the only way to be happy – you don’t need to be with someone to be complete, as I mentioned to one friend over dinner last Friday – it is certainly nice to have a companion as you travel along the road of life.

Leaving you with this, a composite picture that Tawn took while at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

SNC13669

What’s the message he’s sending me?  Ha ha…  hope you all have a good weekend.

 

0 thoughts on “Realizations about Relationships

  1. I guess I’m not the only one dealing with the tropical weather (try a daily mini monsoon after lunch in Panama every day)! I’m one of those who have not had gay friends who’ve married and of course I’ve never attended a gay wedding. Ultimately the support you had from your family and friends show how we’d ideally like to be accepted as if being gay made no real difference. Thankfully full acceptance will be all a matter of time in Western countries (even if there’s laggards) and things are certainly rather dismal in most of Africa and the Middle East. Asia also lags but at least you don’t see gays being executed as in Iraq or other hell holes.Maybe we need a series of posts about keeping a happy gay marriage πŸ™‚

  2. hahaha funny picture. i think you really are the first gay couple i know of who are officially married… so i definitely see you as a pioneer! i’m glad you had so much support from family as well as friends; i’m not sure my family would be so supportive when i get married.

  3. Hi Chris, in my circle of friends and acquaintances you and Tawn are the first to get married, but hearing that you know many who have done so (or are at least in long term relationships) makes me feel good. Our beliefs are often based largely on our personal experiences, which makes me all the more appreciative of having run into you online. The lens through which you view the world is unique, valuable and a source of hope for me — thank you!

  4. I am so happy for both of you. Now you both have to win Tawn’s father over. What a blessing that would be!! Nice picture.  I thinkhe says, he would rather have you in flesh, than those stiffs!!

  5. I love what you wrote about having a companion as you travel the road of life–it is so true.  I am glad that you and Tawn have so much genuine support around you–people don’t realize how important that is as a couple, and I realized that when my husband and I got married last year.  Anyway–cheers to a happy journey for you two =)  (and good for you on getting those thank you cards done ASAP–I am guilty of not sending out ours even though they are long overdue).

  6. lol you’re cute? is that his message? lol well, don’t tell me but has it changed? being married?   You don’t have to tell me cause it’s personal but I noticed my hubby turned into his dad and wanted me to be his mom and we were so open and sharing everything before the marriage. I got him out of that fast but I guess it’s something he needed to work out in his mind.lol

  7. @Roadlesstaken –  @Dezinerdreams –  I’m sure nice young men like you will find your travel companions, no doubt. But as I wrote, I think you can still enjoy the journey as a solo traveler, too. Reading your blogs, it sounds like you are.@TheLatinObserver –  I suspect, Rob, that the keys to a happy gay marriage are the same as the keys to any happy relationship: communication, love, selflessness, patience and forgiveness.@lil_squirrel4ever –  Yes, having that support is really important, isn’t it?@Jillycarmel –  Jill, thankfully we’ve been living together for several years so I’m not seeing any changes in habits. Although Tawn did ask me to get him some papaya while he was napping in bed yesterday evening, but that isn’t so unusual.

  8. @christao408 – Dave sat on my chair(with ottoman) when we got back from our honeymoon and said,”let me know when dinner is ready.” we lived together also and would make dinner together and have fun grabbing each other along with the lettuce and other food. lol

  9. @icapillas –  Thanks, Isabel!@dynamiqvision –  That is one of the benefits of Xanga, I think: the ability to meet people who have very different life experiences. I’m glad that we’ve both benefited from each other’s points of view, Sion.@kunhuo42 –  Aaron, if I’m a pioneer, please don’t make me wear a pair of coveralls, boots and a farmer’s hat, then! LOL@ZSA_MD –  Re Tawn’s father, I guess we all need to have a stone to roll up the hill, right? =D@ZSA_MD –  @choyshinglin –  Interesting interpretations of the picture’s meaning! I read it as me being equally stone-faced.

  10. I was in shock. I laughed to myself and made dinner because his parents were so traditional but I knew that wasn’t what we were but I had been married before at 22yrs old and this was my 2nd marriage and his first and he was 41yrs old and I was 44yr old -let him come around on his own but he kept my chair and ottoman. I got the couch.

  11. I think that I have been blessed to know a few gay couples (including you two) who have gotten married who serve as inspiration and a contrast to the stereotypical gay community. πŸ™‚

  12. Wow! Those two are Shedu who help people fight evil and chaos. They are protectors and hold the gates of dawn open for the sun god Shamash.Perhaps Tawn thinks you are a god? ^^ Or the entrance of a marvelous city? =PIt is so true what you said, relationships are tender things that need nurturing. Social acceptance and support is often taken for granted by the straights and we see too few for gays. You are the third married couple I know ^^ I bet there are more around invisible to most people.Thanks for being so visible ^^

  13. The 2 of you are inspiration to a lot of folks including myself. If you feel a bit modest about inspiration – how about affirmation? The top of the heads (uhm… I can’t think of a better word) of those 2 statues look a bit like, well, heads.

  14. I think Tawn liked the small smiles the carved images had – and how your expression was very similar! Even down to the shape of the eyebrows and lips… As for support from community, family, and friends – it is so true that it is a key component. That is why if I have to make a choice of attending the ceremony or the reception, I opt for the ceremony. Congratulations again!

  15. @murisopsis – Yes, I suppose they do look a little bit like relatives of mine.  Ha ha…@ZenPaper – Perhaps he wants to engage the Shedu to keep me under control?  =)@vsan79 – Thank you.@storyslut – That could be it.  Or a fuller beard instead of just a goatee.  Thanks.@brooklyn2028 – Well, we’re waiting for you guys to bite the bullet…  no pressure, though.  =D@ElusiveWords – “affirmation” works.  Thanks.

  16. As a new friend to you and Tawn, I enjoy the openness of your gender preference with Tawn.  Some of the commentaries from your bloggers pointed out the difficulties for some Asians to accept the gender preference approach.  I would like to share with you that my daughter’s father-in-law is a gay after having had gone through his first marriage with a wife and two children. My son-in-law was concerned how to share the fact with us being Asian.  Our acceptance of his father’s relationship helps us psycho-socially to welcome them to the family with respect from my daughter serving tea to the biological parents of the husband and then tea to the father-in-law and his partner.  In our Chinese wedding, the tea ceremony is a very important traditional practice for the newly-wed couple to honour their parents, family members and relatives.  It is recognition of acceptance of the married couple into the family tree.  Over time Tawn’s father will realise that it doesn’t matter of the gender preference, as long as Chris is a respectful and honourable person who loves Tawn’s family as much as he loves Tawn.About the picture, Chris you always carry your serious face which resembles the two figurines. have a great day

  17. I’m so happy for you! And yes I agree, you don’t need someone to be complete. A lot of people think relationships as two halves making a whole, when it really should be two wholes complementing each other.

  18. @susanloo2002 – Susan, thanks for sharing this story with us.  Certainly, many cultures place a lot of pressure on young people to get married and start a family, even if that is not what they want to do.  I’ve known several people, men and women, who went through marriage and raising children, even though they are actually attracted to people of the same sex.  In some cases, they have subsequently come out.  In other cases, they are still married and in the closet.  Needless to say, this can cause a lot of heartache for everyone involved.Tawn and I have always appreciated the acceptance and support we’ve received from Stephanie and her extended family.  It is nice to have such friends.

  19. like what matt has said ‘affirmation’ , yes we’ve learnt lots of gay/lesbian marriages from the media, or friends of friends; at least to me you both are the very first pair I know (though only on the net)

  20. @agmhkg – Well, I hope we get a chance to meet in person.  It looks like Gary will be traveling to HKG around Christmas and we’re going to try and meet up there, probably around the 25-27th.  Will let you know more details but maybe you can make it?

  21. After moving to SF, I’ve met couples who are together for more than 5 to 10 years left and right.It was such a welcoming thought to a gay man who’s from a city where 6 month relationship is considered VERY long. The sad thing though…is I’ve also hear a lot of those long term couples breaking up as well…

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