“Make sure you leave your ring at home,” I said as we were packing for our trip to the Maldives. With that, both of us took off our wedding rings and left them in DC as we finished packing for our fall trip. And honestly, I didn’t give any more thought to it until we were on the plane and I wondered, was I being cautious or practical? Was I not living up to my commitment to live fully out as myself, or was I being respectful to the local Muslim culture? Or maybe it was unnecessary, given we were staying in mostly tourist locations and unlikely to encounter outward discrimination or hostility.
This is the reality traveling the world as a gay couple. We’ve learned to adapt to the inevitable eyebrow raise when, in some countries, the hotel staff asks twice if we want one bed or two. We only barely notice that most places we go we are in the minority and that causes a few stares. We’ve come to accept there is a certain amount of public affection that is acceptable and safe depending on your surroundings, but one must be cautious about that outside of home turf. Mostly it doesn’t bother us, but sometimes it does and so this Thanksgiving I’m grateful that for the most part I’m able to live open and fully with my husband Christian, and at the same time, I see a world someday when this blog post is but a historical reference on the long road to equality for all minority groups.