By Rachel Wilkerson, Lover.ly
For many of us, it's impossible to be excited about weddings without feeling sad that not everyone is allowed to partake in the fun of wedding planning, the joy of making a public commitment, and the legal, social, and emotional benefits of being married. That's why we love the idea of acknowledging gay and lesbian loved ones and their ongoing fight for the right to marry during the wedding. In celebration of Pride month, here are our favorite ways to show support for gay marriage at your straight wedding.
1. Include a reading in your ceremony that not-so-subtly supports marriage equality.
Photo by: Michele M. Wait on Inspired By This via Lover.ly
We love this passage written by Chief Justice Margaret H. Marshall in 2003's ruling to legalize same-sex marriage in Massachusetts:
"Marriage is a vital social institution. The exclusive commitment of two individuals to each other nurtures love and mutual support. Civil marriage is at once a deeply personal commitment to another human being and a highly public celebration of the ideals of mutuality, companionship, intimacy, fidelity, and family. Because it fulfills yearnings for security, safe haven, and connection that express our common humanity, civil marriage is an esteemed institution and the decision whether and whom to marry is among life's momentous acts of self-definition. It is undoubtedly for these concrete reasons, as well as for its intimately personal significance, that civil marriage has long been termed a 'civil right.' Without the right to choose to marry one is excluded from the full range of human experience."
2. In lieu of having favors, make a donation to a marriage equality group.
7979_60f20da6e2937fc0 Photo by: Jessica Hill, A Brit and a Blonde on Equally Wed via Lover.ly
And have cards printed for each table that let guests know that you have made a donation to a charity like White Knot or Marriage Equality USA on their behalf.
3. Get married in a state that has already legalized gay marriage.
Photo by: Alternative Life Photography on Equally Wed via Lover.ly
Chances are, you'll be spending a pretty big sum of money on your wedding; you can vote with your dollar by supporting the economy in a state that offers gay couples the same rights you have. And when people ask why you chose that location for your wedding, it's an opportunity to tell them why marriage equality is important to you.
4. Give the same-sex couples in attendance the first dance.
Photo by: We Are For Each Other on The Brides Cafe via Lover.ly
If your gay and lesbian friends would be comfortable with this (and you should definitely ask first!), have the DJ invite them to take the first dance as a showing of your support for their ongoing fight for acceptance and the right to be legally married.
More from Lover.ly:
The most romantic gay weddings
Creative ideas for your wedding backdrop
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By Rachel Wilkerson, Lover.ly