Five years after Massachusetts legalized gay marriage, most of the furor has fizzled and day-to-day consequences have settled in, the AP reports. Now long-time partners are recognized as family during hospital stays; they can also explain family ties and deal with state adoption officials more easily. And then there's "that emotional sigh of relief—just knowing a court of law would understand our family," one lesbian mom said.
Opposition to same-sex unions still exists, but early threats by conservative groups to unseat legislators or enact an anti-gay-marriage referendum have faded. Many Massachusetts gay couples still bristle at having to file federal taxes individually and go through customs without the status of marriage. But "having your committed relationships recognized—to say it's deeply meaningful is to trivialize it," one lawyer said.