Many, many same-sex couples turned down my request to be interviewed for this week's cover package (read it here).
Whether it was because one partner or the other wasn't completely out of the closet, or because they'd dealt with too much hate over the years and harbored considerable fear, whatever the reason, I heard a lot more "no" than "yes" as I made my way down the list.
It made perfect sense that someone would say no. And it's why I want to say thank you to the four couples who enthusiastically said yes — who agreed to open their private lives to me.
Their relationships were a beautiful thing to observe. One limitation to print is that it's hard to express with words shared moments experienced. The way Stuart settled his foot on top of Rick's. How Dara and Lauren wrapped arms and squeezed, both grinning at one another.
The love between each of these four couples was palpable.
As Valentine's Day arrives, a day that's become for many over-commercialized and pressure-filled, take a moment to sit down with these stories and let them settle into your heart.
What opens up there just might surprise you.