The plaintiffs in our Illinois marriage lawsuit include 16 same-sex couples and their families from across the state. Their moving stories make it perfectly clear: it’s just time for marriage equality in Illinois. Here is the story of Teresa and Mercedes:
Theresa Volpe, 41, and Mercedes Santos, 46, have been together 20 years and live in Rogers Park, Chicago, with their two children, Ava, 7, and Jaidon, 4. When Jaidon was hospitalized near death for kidney failure, hospital administrators barred Theresa from entering unless she identified herself as a “stepmother,” telling her Mercedes was already inside and Jaidon could only have one “real” mother. Theresa and Mercedes have been together for 21 years and wish to marry so that everyone knows they are both their children’s real mothers.