“It feels so schizophrenic to not be recognized as who we really are,” Dale said.
Uebelhoer said it becomes even more confusing when completing hospital forms related to caring for a spouse in the home and financial medical obligations. Uebelhoer and Dale said their church is very supportive of their relationship, and the church’s minister has asked how the church can help the lawsuit.
Dale added that she becomes frustrated when public opinion merges civil marriages with religious marriages.
“They are different things,” she said. “We are not talking about wanting to make a church do something it doesn’t agree with.”
Dale said U.S. vs. Windsor has caused a lot of confusion for same-sex couples trying to understand what their rights are, and it’s made some in Indiana impatient with the state’s stand against gay marriage.
“Right now is the time,” she said. “Let’s clear it up. Let’s get is straightened out. Let’s make sure it is the same understanding everywhere.”
Lane Stumler and Michael Drury, New Albany, the only male couple among the plaintiffs, have been together for nearly 10 years and are seeking the right be wed in Indiana.
“For us, it is a little debilitating to hear the legislature talk about your lives without having a voice, and that is why we are here,” Drury said.
Like Dale and Uebelhoer, Stumler said he wants to get married in his church and that the church is willing to marry the couple, but the state is preventing the ceremony.
Stumler, 66, said he is now motivated to stand up for his rights after seeing gay rights openly discussed each day in the media debating “my worth as a human being or trying to decide [if] the DNA I was born disqualifies me from being equal to everyone else.”