Maggie and Yasemin

Posted on February 7, 2010. Filed under: Stories - from other sites |

Maggie (U.S.) & Yasemin (Turkey)
I met my partner in February 2003 in Portland, Oregon. She was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. Somehow I knew she would change my life forever.

Before we planned our commitment ceremony, my partner informed me that in 2002 she had filed a claim for political asylum in the U.S.

At first I had no idea of the impact this would have on us or how our future could possibly be affected. Then I did some research.

My partner had passed the one-year deadline and it would be almost impossible to get past this legal challenge. I further found that there was no relief for same-sex couples under the law.

In January 2005 we were forced to flee to Canada for protection.

It is hard to quantify how it feels to be exiled from your own country!

Yes we are safe and together but we are still not totally adjusted. I think it has to do with the fact that we were essentially forced to live here.

If we had a choice, we would still be home in the U.S.

There is not a day that goes by that both of us yearn to be back home.
As a U.S. citizen, I am still struggling to understand how my relationship is so threatening that it warrants being exiled!

Our life at home was totally destroyed. We had to leave our posses¬sions behind. Our credit was devastated from attempting to stave off our departure and live a normal life at the same time.

When we came to Canada, we had no support network, no place to stay, and no status. For almost three weeks we lived in a shelter.

Neither of us had ever lived like that before and I think it is still having a huge negative effect on us.

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