Moving from ambivalence to certainty: Older same-sex couples marry in Canada

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Humble, Áine M.
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Canadian Journal on Aging / La Revue canadienne du vieillissement
A qualitative study, within a life course perspective, explored the transition into marriage for mid- to later-life same-sex couples. Twenty individuals (representing 11 couples) were interviewed – 12 lesbians, seven gay men, and one bisexual man. At the time of their marriages, participants were between 42 and 72 years old (average age: 54) and had been with their partners from six months to 19 years (average: 7.5 years). Three processes highlighted the ways in which these same-sex couples’ experiences of deciding to marry were influenced by their life course experiences. First, individuals had to integrate marriage into their psyches (integration). Second, they had to consider why they would marry their specific partner (rationale). Third, the study participants demonstrated how their experiences of wedding planning and their wedding characteristics were imbued with intentionality as a result of lifetime experiences of homophobia and/or heterosexism (intentionality).
Aging , LGBT , Same-sex couples , Older couples , Qualitative methods , Weddings
Humble, A. M. (2013). Moving from ambivalence to certainty: Older same-sex couples marry in Canada. Canadian Journal on Aging, 32(2), 131-144. doi:10.1017/S0714980813000196