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These Women Are Getting Wed on Their Timetable, Not the Supreme Court's

These Women Are Getting Wed on Their Timetable, Not the Supreme Court's


When Jennifer Williams and Sumer Shelton met three years ago, marriage equality was a dream in their home state of Missouri. Things are different now.

For Jennifer Williams and Sumer Shelton, there was little doubt about their compatibility, even from the beginning. "We spoke to each other for the first time on Valentine's Day in 2012. We went on our first date two days later and haven't been apart since," Sumer shares.

Jen and Sumer are engaged to marry on May 16 of this year, but they are saving the big celebration for May 14, 2016.

"I knew Sumer was the woman I was going to marry when she went to the hospital on her day off, while I was working, to sit with my best friend, who was sick and by herself," Jen recalls. "I already knew I loved her, but at that moment I realized that I never wanted to spend another day without her."

Jen, 30, is an intensive clinical manager for a community psychiatric rehabilitation center. She is from Ironton, Mo., and holds a master's degree from Central Methodist University.

Sumer, 37, currently works in a retail store. She hails from Herculaneum, Mo. The women live together in St. Louis, the rare place in Missouri where same-sex marriage is legal.

Jen was the first one to pop the question. "I proposed to Sumer on September 20, 2012, at about 3 a.m. at our home."

"I later proposed to Jen," Sumer says with a smile. "Then promptly asked her to change clothes so we could get our backyard prepared for a party we were hosting."

"I knew I wanted to marry Jen," Sumer continues, "because, for the first time, I had a 'partner.' Jen and I do everything 50-50, appreciate every day together, and never take each other for granted."

If you're engaged, recently married, or a new parent, we'd love to hear your story. Reach us at

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