In case you missed it, last weekend the folks at Fox News got their wires crossed when they used a picture of a gorgeous lesbian couple as the lead image for an article advocating traditional gender roles in favor of finding a husband.
While we — and the rest of the interwebs — were busy laughing our asses off, Feministing caught up Stephanie Figarelle, the handsome bride and half of the Alaska-based couple who won a contest to become the first same-sex couple to marry at the iconic Empire State Building last year.
Here's what Figarelle — who is currently on her honeymoon with her wife Lela — had to say:
"Yes, I’m aware that I look like a dude. I have known this my entire life- I’ll prove it by sharing baby photos sometime. I’ve gotten bullied, hit on by gay dudes and hot “straight” girls, seen the inside of both male and female bathrooms. Gotten yelled at for going into the women’s restroom- but never the men’s. I’ve had to tell my parents, grandparents and the rest of my family that I am gay, ultimately facing their rejection. Luckily, since I’ve looked like a dude since birth, they all accepted me with open arms since they really weren’t surprised...
"Thankfully, I figured out who I was at a young age and I have cultivated a deep sense of self-trust and unshakeable confidence in the process. I am fortunate to have a wonderful, support and loving wife who I got to marry at the top of the Empire State building almost 1 year ago. I have loving parents who have always encouraged me to be myself (except when I went through my baggy pants stage, they hated that) and I have kick ass friends who love me for me...
"I have made the decision to live my life authentically no matter who likes it, who’s confused by it, or who thinks I’m going to simmer in hell for eternity. I have many gay and transgender friends who suffer on a daily basis and to you I say, be who are with all of your heart. There’s a passionate fire to LIVE deep inside of each of us and the world will do all it can to snuff it out. Don’t let anyone take that passion from you. Don’t try to change yourself to please other people. You’ll lead a miserable, nightmare of an existence. Trust me, I know from personal experience."
Read Figarelle's entire eloquent response here.