Stockholm Pride Week Wedding: Jorge & Claes
August 1, 2013
Jorge and Claes met at a gay bar in Stockholm—well, a bar that’s actually a boat! Born in Mexico, Jorge moved to Sweden during his first marriage, from which he has a daughter. Jorge and Claes lived together for almost 10 years before they married. In Sweden, there is no difference between married couples or couples living in the same household (both gay and straight). Marriage, however, was a statement to Jorge.
In June 2013, Jorge’s best friend married in New York. It was the first time that gay couples could marry in the Big Apple. He received a message on a Friday night, and announced to Claes that his friends were getting married. A couple of minutes later, he asked Claes, “What about us? Why don’t we get married?” Claes responded “What for?” To which Jorge responded, “Just because we can!” Claes asked Jorge, “Are you Proposing?” Jorge said “I suppose I am,” and Claes answered “In that case I would say YES!”
By then, Stockholm Pride quickly approached, and one of the sponsors, the 7-Eleven store, was marrying people at Pride Park, where they set up a wedding “chapel.” Jorge contacted them and scheduled a time to marry on Aug. 1, 2013 at 10 a.m. It was difficult to get a license for marriage within three weeks. Jorge applied online for the license at the Swedish Tax Agency, where he discovered the process takes at least five weeks. He called them to explain, however, and they received the license the next day!
The next three weeks were pretty chaotic. They didn’t have time to send fancy invitations or book vendors, so they decided to grill on their patio. They limited their number of guests, inviting only their closest friends and family. The guest list included Jorge’s ex-wife and his daughter, of course. They had salads catered and grilled until midnight.
Jorge and Claes could not agree on the same design of wedding rings, so they wear different ones. They remember one of their most special moments was during the ceremony, when Claes’ mother and Jorge’s ex-wife could not stop crying.
The newlyweds spent the night at a hotel in central Stockholm where fruit and champagne awaited them.
Jorge would recommend to other engaged couples: “Get it simple, and be sure your friends and family are around.”