» Same-Sex Marriage Evolution: From Niche To Modern Market

This post was written by WeddingWire Education Expert Kathryn Hamm, Publisher of GayWeddings.com, the leading online resource dedicated to serving same-sex couples since 1999. Kathryn is also co-author of the groundbreaking book, The New Art of Capturing Love: The Essential Guide to Lesbian and Gay Wedding Photography. Follow her on Twitter @madebykathryn.

It was such a pleasure to have the opportunity on Tuesday, May 19 to talk about the evolution of same-sex marriage over the years and the key elements that wedding professionals need to keep in mind when marketing to and serving same-sex couples. I’m deeply grateful to WeddingWire for its incredible support over the past 5 years, but also to the more than 2,600 wedding professionals who registered for the webinar and the 120,000 wedidng professionals who are listed in the GayWeddings.com directory.

Same-Sex Marriage Evolution: From Niche To Modern MarketAs I mentioned in the webinar, there is no better indicator of how much things have changed than the fact that 86% of the wedding professionals that WeddingWire surveyed report that they are serving or plan to serve same-sex couples in 2015. It’s a majority that outpaces the approval ratings (reported by an April 2015 Washington Post/ABC poll) of Millennials (78%) and the general adult population (61%). I very much look forward to celebrating nationwide recognition of marriage equality — hopefully as early as this June!

On our webinar, I promised some bonus content. Please find it below. There are two videos and three links.

One video is a trailer from the film, Limited Partnership, which will air on PBS’ Independent Lens on June 15; the other is a clip from my own wedding shower a couple of friends hosted for me and my wife in 1999.

You can read:

I’ll be following up in my next post with more post-webinar content to answer those great questions which went unanswered. We’ve got a long list, but do feel free to tag @WeddingWireEDU and #AskKathryn if you’d like to add a few more into the mix.

A Trailer for Limited Partnership

Watching this film about presents a fabulous opportunity for those interested in the history of the movement and the pioneers who began a process that has a direct impact on where we are today. The film “chronicles the 40-year love story between Filipino American Richard Adams and his Australian husband, Tony Sullivan, who sought and received a marriage license in Boulder, Colorado in 1975 thanks to a brave clerk who didn’t see a legal reason to deny them, even though she understood that her decision might not be a popular one. The Independent Lens website includes a Limited Partnership discussion guide for those of you who might wish for a vehicle for discussion with your colleagues.

Limited Partnership Trailer 10_24_14 from Thomas G. Miller Director/Producer on Vimeo.

My Straight Mom’s ‘Commitment To Normalcy’

Sometimes, nothing is worse that being subjected to someone else’s home videos, but I hope you’ll indulge me. In 1999, some friends threw me and my wife a wedding shower. None of us quite knew what to expect, and I know that we broke a few traditional rules in the shower’s implementation (including the crazy fact that we invited men — Men! — to join us), but we had a blast. And this shower was the occasion upon which my mom’s inspiration to found our original websites, TwoBrides.com & TwoGrooms.com, was born.

A little background: our friends concocted a ‘time capsule’ theme and my mom, Gretchen Hamm, stole the show by having found a pair of bride cake toppers for us and — of all things! — a card that had two brides on it. The predominantly lesbian crowd was astonished, thrilled and appreciative that this straight mom from Texas had found something reflective of lesbian brides, the like of which we had never seen before. This :60 clip from the shower highlights the moment that my mom highlighted what she referred to as her ‘commitment to normalcy.’ That is, she had come to understand in the course of our wedding planning that “My daughter’s getting married and it’s a wedding. It doesn’t matter if there’s a groom or another bride!”

Video courtesy of Kathryn Hamm