"I take him for my wedded mate. I will love, honor, comfort, and cherish him from this day forward, forsaking all others, keeping only unto him for as long as we both shall live." There was a special wedding in a hotel of Luohu district, Shenzhen on August 19. There was no bride, but two bridegrooms: the 25-year-old Mark and 23-year-old An An. This is the first gay wedding made public in Shenzhen. They shared the cake, bowed to heaven and earth, exchanged the rings and kissed each other like other couples. They hope that they can get blessings and understanding from the society.
Friends and relatives refused to show up
The hotel posted a red paper at the entrance as the custom does. It wrote congratulations to the wedding of Mr. Mark and Mr. An An. Many passers-by reminded the staff that it shall be Mr. and Miss. The waiter and waitress explained that it was not a typo.
There were only 5 friends and relatives attended the wedding. "They still don’t understand us" Mark said. Before the wedding, he and An sent invitation cards and made phone calls to dozens of friends and relatives. They invited them to be their love witness. But most of them declined with all kinds of reasons. Or they received the replies like "An, you must be crazy. Go and see the mental doctor please." "Mark, you must be kidding. I’ll present next time when you marry a girl." Mark and An booked 5 tables originally. Only 2 were full that day. They didn’t invite their parents, "We dare not to tell them. They will be furious to death if they know it".
Aunt witnessed their love
3 of Mark’s female friends and 1 of An’s male friend (groomsman) came. "I’m gay too. I know it’s hard for them to be together. I come to give my best wishes." the groomsman said. He told the journalist that most of gay people hide their love to avoid discrimination. He admires Mark and An’s courage, that they dare to make the wedding public . Another guest was An’s aunt Yu. She gave two rainbow wrist ribbons to the couple, because rainbow was seen as a symbol as love of the same-sex. Yu burst into tears several times during the wedding and said sorry to her elder brother. "My nephew doesn’t dare to tell their parents. And I don’t dare to tell my brother and sister in law. But I can feel my nephew’s happiness, so I hope that they remain a devoted couple for good and all" she said. An grew up with Yu. Yu is aunt as well as good friend.
When An told his aunt he was gay, Yu couldn’t understand him and blamed him for that. But An went down on his knees at the door of Yu’s room for 3 days to ask blessing from her. Finally, Yu promised to go to their wedding.
"We are gay. Maybe we are not accepted by the society, but we love each other and marry each other. We will accompany each other day and night, will not abandon and leave" in front of Yu, Mark and An spoke out their love oath. They burst into tears and kissed deeply.
They fell in love with each other at the first sight
Mark is from Hebei. Last year he went to work in Qingdao. He met An in a gay bar and fell in love with each other at the first sight. Mark had twice love affairs (with girls) in his middle school. After college, he found himself interested in the handsome boys rather than girls. He was annoyed. "I always have sleepless night. I felt that I am abnormal. I didn’t dare to communicate with other people." Mark recalled. When he was a sophomore, he watched the film Lan yu, which was about two gay men. He began to be sure that he was gay. Then he found there were a lot of gay people in this society. Through gay bars and websites, he met many friends.
An has the same experience. He moved out of college to live with Mark in March last year.
They hope to restrain each other by wedding
"There’s no right and wrong in love. If you like one, love this person in your heart, no matter your partner is male or female…" Mark sang this song to An in the wedding. The tune of it was written by An and the lyric by Mark. This is the sound of their souls and for all the love of homosexuality.
They came to Shenzhen this year after An’s graduation from college. They found this city very modern and open. Mark explained many gay people had an indulge life. It will be easy for them to get HIV. They hope to have marriage, because it can offer a stable and trustworthy feeling. And making the wedding public can restrain each other. "We hope this wedding can let the society highlight the best of us. And I hope to get the lawful marriage certificate." Mark said.
Mark and An cried several times in the wedding. They felt very difficult to get understanding from other people
They kissed deeply.