Back in 2010, a member of the City Council in Chicago, Illinois, made an announcement to the public and to her fellow politicians that she and her girlfriend had gotten engaged to be married. This was done on the Illinois House floor, so it was a public declaration that she wanted people to hear about, using it as a chance to stand up for same-sex marriage rights by addressing the fact that her marriage would not be allowed in Illinois.
She noted then that the day was both bittersweet and happy all at once, saying that she felt anyone who was engaged to be married, regardless of their sexual orientation, should have the chance to celebrate their love.
When the two were married, the politician was the first elected official in the state – at least with that high of a profile – to be part of a same-sex marriage. Their marriage ceremony did not happen until 2011.
However, she recently took to Twitter to tell people that she and her wife are now going to be divorced. She says that this merely shows that people are all the same, giving a nod to the fact that both same-sex and opposite-sex couples sometimes end up getting divorced. She also said that her wife had asked to retain her own privacy during the process, and she asked people to honor that request.
Since Illinois only recently made same-sex marriage legal, it is important for those in the state to know how this impacts divorce proceedings as well. Since the marriages can now be recognized, it makes divorce in Illinois just as possible for same-sex couples as it currently is for opposite-sex couples.
Source: Source: Sun Times, “Deb Mell says her same-sex marriage is over: ‘Divorce is painful’,” Natasha Korecki, July 3, 2014