Do we need to get married before things get worse?
January 30, 2017 10:19 PM   Subscribe

Is there a compelling reason in these troubling times for a cis hetero (well, I'm bi, but) couple to get married before things get worse? I think some of my worry stems from having been in a longterm lesbian relationship before this one, and knowing the protections of marriage then couldn't apply to me. I am worried that by the time we think, "Oh, shit, we need to get married," it will somehow be too late. Relevant details inside.

Both cis, both born in US to citizen parents, both have Latin@ surnames (though mine is now one of my middle names), live in Texas, do not live together. Neither of us have any children. We do not own any real property. I have a small amount of student/medical debt, he has neither. Both employed full time at stable jobs (one working for a state institution), both have healthcare through our employers. I have a chronic health condition to do with reproductive health (endometriosis, pelvic floor dysfunction). Pregnancy is not a worry or an issue as he has a vasectomy and I am on continuous birth control to treat the endo. We have been together 6+ years. If there's any other details that need to be known, I'll update.
posted by anonymous to Law & Government (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Since you're a hetero couple, I'd say there's no particular compelling reason.

In fact, with uncertainty around the insurance industry, you may be better off waiting in case the GOP does something catastrophically stupid and upends the industry. If either of your healthcare plans through your employer goes belly-up, you can get married and that's a regular "life event" for health insurance purposes that HR will already have the form handy for. (As opposed to "technically my spouse still has insurance, it's just that the company that provides it went belly-up all of a sudden so there's no entity that will write the checks, so doctors are abruptly not accepting it, because there's also no entity that will sue them for being in breach of contract.")

I'm sure other folks will have other angles to consider.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:39 PM on January 30, 2017 [12 favorites]

I'm thinking of getting married because of all this because I am afraid that men in my red state are emboldened and they might fuck with me if he dies first. For example if something went to court like his pension benefits men might rule against me - just because they can.

I took our important papers out of the safe deposit box because I am afraid the bank will fuck with me. Not let me have access because we are not married (although co-signers).

When a spouse dies the survivor will get the social security amount of the higher earner. This would be a reason to marry if a person wants their lower earning spouse to benefit. But you have to be married for at least ten years. I think. I'm 80% sure SS will survive the current circus.
posted by cda at 1:00 AM on January 31, 2017 [3 favorites]

Seconding Blue Jello Elf. As a cis hetero couple you can probably still get married at any point, so you can just think of some things that might be triggering events and be ready to go.

But if you just want to get married, and needed something like "Will something bad happen if we don't" to trigger it, then heck yeah, just go ahead and do it. My bisexual husband and I (also bi) had a lovely justice of the peace wedding and have never regretted doing that instead of the whole fooferah.
posted by Made of Star Stuff at 4:45 AM on January 31, 2017 [1 favorite]

I am worried that by the time we think, "Oh, shit, we need to get married," it will somehow be too late.

If you've both basically already made the decision about the permanency of your relationship, then I'd say that given your circumstance it probably doesn't have to do with the potential for governmental problems? It has to do with the fact that if one of you gets hit by a bus, you can't run get married before that person has to go to the hospital. Most of the things where it really deeply matters are cases where one of you is incapacitated. If you guys want each other to be the ones who get to make decisions if that happens, line up everything you need to make that the case now, not later. I'd say the urgency of this depends more on whether you trust your parents to make decisions on your behalf that you'd approve of and to involve your partner in that process than anything else.
posted by Sequence at 6:02 AM on January 31, 2017 [7 favorites]

No one is talking about banning marriages for cis man / cis woman couples. If you want to do something, donate to LGBT civil rights orgs.
posted by bile and syntax at 10:30 AM on January 31, 2017 [3 favorites]

Update from the anonymous OP:
Thank you all, you brought up some good points, especially that we need to do last wills/POAs/living wills soon if we don't get married. I am mostly concerned NOT that hetero couples won't be able to get married, but more things like cda brings up. What if unmarried couples aren't able to get birth control? Are there more things like that I'm not thinking of?
posted by LobsterMitten at 8:54 AM on February 1, 2017

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