I lived every romantic's dream. I went to a far-off country and met a tall, handsome foreigner. He charmed me with his sexy accent, and one night, after a whirlwind courtship, flushed with love and a ridiculous amount of alcohol, he proposed and I said yes.
That's where the bad romance novels and chick flicks usually end. That's because what comes next is decidedly less sexy. All marriages take work, but when you and the person you decide to spend the rest of your life with are from different countries, you face issues that homonational couples would never even think about.
Your Love Is Tested Early On
If you are willing to forego the $51 billion wedding-industrial complex, getting married to another American is insanely easy. As drunks in Vegas prove all the time, you can decide to get married one minute, and be signing your life away half an hour later. But when you want to marry a foreigner, the government makes it take slightly more effort than invading a small country.
It was really difficult to fit that in before the reception.
Simon and I met and married in the UK, which meant we had to go through mountains of paperwork to get me a marriage visa for that country. Then, within 18 months of tying the knot, we moved to the US, which meant another nation wanted all up in our happily wedded life. Since we had been married less than two years, we had to prove to the government that our marriage was real, and that he wasn't just using me to flee single-payer healthcare and common-sense gun laws.
I should point out that while we had to go through the same system of "fill out forms, pay money, fill out forms, sign over your firstborn child" that everyone has to go through, once we got to the face-to-face interview stage, everything went much quicker because we are both white. It's basically that simple. Since we were suitably mayonnaise-colored, both countries figured that the chances of our marriage being real were pretty good.
Interracial, gay, AND an age gap? Yeah, have fun with that.