Atlantic Profiles Same-Sex Couple Wed Last Year in New York, Already Divorced


The Atlantic profiles the rise of gay divorce where states have redefined marriage:

"...Soon after New York passed the Marriage Equality Act on June 24 last year, Katie Marks andDese’Rae Stage began planning their wedding day. A licensed masseuse and a photographer, both 28, the couple had been dating since 2008 and were already planning to get married — in Boston over the Memorial Day weekend of 2012 — but the euphoria of the moment moved everything forward. “It was kind of one of those things, to be a part of history,” Des says. On July 30, the first Saturday that gay marriages could be performed in New York City, Katie in a magenta dress and Des in skinny jeans and pink Chuck Taylors joined 23 other couples at the Pop Up Chapel, a one-day wedding event in Central Park, as part of New York City’s first wave of legally married gay couples. By January, though, things had started to come apart. Des and Katie have since separated and moved out of their Washington Heights apartment. They're now one of the first married gay couples — if not the very first — in New York to divorce. “I feel like I’m the president of the loneliest club in the world,” Des says. “I was the first gay person in my group of friends to marry, and now I’m the only gay divorcée I know.”

... On the sort-of-bright side, [Shannon Minter, Legal Director of the National Center for Lesbian Rights] adds, "I think we will continue to see people divorce. But nothing has humanized gay couples more than for straight people to realize gay couples need to divorce, too.”

... "We have 34 [gay divorce] cases right now in the office, compared to 150 [heterosexual] divorce cases,” says Raoul Felder, a New York divorce lawyer who has handled numerous high-profile breakups including Rudy Giuliani’s split from his wife of 18 years, Donna Hanover, while he was mayor of New York. [...] Felder added that gay divorces are currently "filtering down at a faster rate than heterosexual divorces.”