Donna and Marie-Jo

Posted on March 29, 2010. Filed under: Stories - from other sites | Tags: , , , , , , |

We met in 1994 while Marie-Jo was on assignment in Washington, DC. We married religiously with the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) on May 4, 1996 in Arlington, VA where we lived at the time. When Marie-Jo had to return to Belgium at the end of 1998, fortunately she was legally able to sponsor me as her partner for immigration purposes and I obtained a Belgian residency permit.

We entered into a Registered Partnership as soon as that became legal in 2000. On February 14, 2004, the first day that marriage was legal for same-sex couples with one Belgian partner and one non-Belgian partner (no matter what the country of origin or that country’s laws on same-sex marriage) we were legally married at the City Hall here in Waterloo Belgium.

We hope that one day our marriage will be recognized by the federal and state governments in the U.S.A. I would like the same immigration rights as straight couples to be able to sponsor my spouse for residency in the U.S.A. We would like to move back to the U.S.A. where my entire family of 8 younger brothers and sisters, 11 nieces and nephews, and my 88-year old father all live.

– Donna

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