It’s 2019 and when it comes to tying the knot, we’re happy to sing from our Aussie rooftops that since December 2017, same-sex marriages are now both legalised and widely accepted across the whole of Australia – plus 29 other countries world-wide. To celebrate the approach of this 2-year milestone and to give a firm nod to marriage equality everywhere, we wanted to explore cultural traditions, both old and new, across same-sex marriages.
First things first, we’d like to delve into a little bit of myth busting. Yep, you heard! We’d like to straighten out any misconceptions that may still be floating around when it comes to same-sex marriage. We need to banish the idea, once and for all, that there are any major differences purely due to whether or not it’s an LGBT wedding. “Who wears what? Who proposes to who? Who takes who’s surname?” These are all decisions which we strongly believe depends, entirely, on each couple as individuals, regardless of sexual orientation or gender.
However here is one main cultural difference which we can’t ignore when it comes to same-sex marriage: the location of the ceremony. Despite same-sex marriage in Australia being granted legalisation back in 2017, most major religious organisations here don’t perform same-sex marriages in their places of worship. At the present, this includes Christian, Catholic and Anglican churches. Within Judaism however, although same-sex marriages are not permitted in Orthodox Jewish places of worship, we are happy to announce that they are, in fact, performed in Reform Jew synagogues – which is a small leap in the right direction. Whilst we impatiently await the glorious day when more churches subject themselves to the winds of change in this area, in the meantime, LGBT couples can get as creative as they like when it comes to choosing their dream wedding venue. Throughout our 12 years of supplying world-class wedding entertainment, we’ve attended same-sex marriages at some beautiful, unique venues such as Tree Top Escape in Devon, Broadoaks Country House in Cumbria and Ocean Kave – Coastal Wedding Venue, in Cornwall.
This brings us swiftly on to traditions (and in some cases, breaking them!)
Countless traditions have been established on the road to tying the knot within straight relationships over the years. From the man getting down on one knee and presenting his chosen engagement ring, to it being bad luck to see the bride in her dress before the ceremony, there’s no denying that these fixed traditions in straight marriage, don’t seem to be going anywhere any time soon. But times are constantly evolving and with it, traditions are changing too…
According to Petra Truneckova of The Gay Wedding Planner, 81% of gay men no longer bother with engagement rings, instead opting for ‘engagement gifts.’
Another tradition which lots of LGBT couples are waving goodbye to is walking down the aisle. Hugh Wright, spokesman for The Gay Wedding Guide says “Some couples ditch the aisle altogether. Some enter together, some don’t. Sometimes they enter with one or both parents, or somebody else close chosen to symbolically ‘give them away’ to each other.”
So, whilst many same-sex couples may wish to adopt the long-standing traditions of straight couples as they embark upon their wedding day, many are also casting them aside and simply creating their own. Our thoughts? Be it old traditions or new, we salute same-sex couples world-wide no matter what they choose. As Hugh Wright so fittingly says, “any wedding in this day and age, is a celebration of the couple’s love for each other, not of their genders” and we couldn’t agree more.