Michelle and Corynne met and fell in love more than two decades ago, and in 1995, they held a ceremony to celebrate their commitment to one another.
Not long after making that commitment, Michelle and Corynne started a family, adopting the first of their three children. Raising children– and talking to them about not being able to marry — made something quite clear to Michelle and Corynne: marriage matters.
“As our children mature, we are trying to teach them important life lessons about honoring relationships and respecting the family unit,” says Michelle. “It is difficult to communicate a message about the importance of marriage when we are denied the right to enter into one.”
Corynne and Michelle learned the importance of marriage through watching their own parents. They saw “how marriage and the commitment of marriage helps a family cope with the ups and downs that are simply a part of life.”
They want to set the same example for their children — but right now, Corynne and Michelle can only enter into a civil union.
In the wake of the Supreme Court’s historic ruling to strike down the so-called Defense of Marriage Act, the difference between a marriage and a civil union has never been more clear.
Since the Supreme Court’s decision, married same-sex couples now have access to federal protections; they’re granted comprehensive protection under the law. But couples in a civil union continue to be denied these federally granted benefits.
Corynne and Michelle know that only a marriage — not a civil union — will provide them the security they need to take care of their family.
For themselves and their children, Michelle and Corynne want the chance to publicly affirm their commitment in marriage. Illinois legislators failed to give them that chance during the 2013 general session. But they can act now to allow all loving couples to share in the freedom to marry.
Micelle and Corynne have been together for over two decades, they shouldn’t have to wait another day for marriage. Click here to tell your legislator: the time is NOW, pass marriage in the fall veto session!