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Over 7,000 same-sex couples have wed in Washington’s first year of marriage equality

Marriage equality

Washington state sealMarriage equality became legal in Washington exactly one year ago today, and as The Olympian reports, more than 7,000 couples have wed under the new state law:

Washington marks the one-year anniversary of legally recognized same-sex marriages on Friday, and the Washington state Department of Health says more than 7,000 couples have wed under the new law. About a quarter of the marriages were unions involving both parties from out of state, making the state a bit of a magnet for such betrothals. DOH says 524 were from Oregon, 170 from Texas and 155 from California.

The state’s most populous county, King, had the 3,452 same-sex marriages – most in the state. Clark – located on the Oregon border – had the second most, 785. Ranked third was Pierce, followed by Snohomish with 330 and then Thurston.

Same-sex couples made up 17 percent of Washington state’s total marriages in the last year, which numbered a bit over 42,000.  Sixty-two percent of same-sex marriages were between two women, and 24 percent of couples were from out-of-state, compared to just six percent of different-sex marriages.

Interestingly, while individuals marrying in Washington are allowed to choose whether to be designated a ‘bride,’ ‘groom’ or ‘spouse,’ most applicants opted to refer to themselves as a ‘spouse.’

You can read the Washington State Department of Health’s full report on the data here. Congratulations to everyone who has wed in Washington, and to those couples celebrating their one-year wedding anniversary this Monday!


  • 1. Eric Koszyk  |  December 6, 2013 at 8:10 am

    I wonder how much money the state of Oregon has lost due to them not allowing same sex marriages to be performed in their state?

    It is 1 issue that should be brought up numerous times next year when they try to repeal the ban on same sex marriage.

  • 2. Gary  |  December 6, 2013 at 8:13 am

    Just an FYI. In Washington State there is a three-day waiting period for Marriages. So we celebrate our anniversary on Monday (December 9th).

  • 3. JohnW6  |  December 6, 2013 at 8:15 am

    Because of the required three day waiting period, the first marriages in Washington state were performed on Sunday, Dec. 9, not Dec. 6. My husband and I will be going out to dinner on the 9th to celebrate our first (legal) anniversary, in our 43rd year of life together.

  • 4. Gary  |  December 6, 2013 at 8:31 am

    Same here. Our 26th. It was quite an adjustment to be called "newlyweds" when we've been together longer than any other couple in both our families. Happy Anniversary.

  • 5. karen in kalifornia  |  December 6, 2013 at 8:48 am

    Congrats JohnW and Gary on your anniversaries. We just got married ourselves after 30+ years together and joke about being "newlyweds". For a lark I thought I'd quiz our friends to gather opinions on how long after being married one would be considered newlywed if you had already been together for years. Surprisingly the very first friend I asked turn out to be an amateur Ms Manners and quipped our the answer without hesitating, "One year. You are newlyweds for one year." So John and Gary and husbands, you only have a few more days of being "newlyweds".

  • 6. PIERRE DENEROME  |  December 6, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    After 41+ years of concubinage,my "new husband" and I decided to get married early this morning. That way,if it doesn't work out,we will not havewasted awhole day! :-):-):-)

  • 7. davep  |  December 6, 2013 at 12:47 pm


  • 8. Jacob Combs  |  December 6, 2013 at 1:43 pm

    Thanks for pointing that out–just made a quick fix to reflect that!

  • 9. Corey  |  December 6, 2013 at 10:41 am

    As a point of reference: King County is the greater Seattle area; Pierce is Tacoma; Thurston is the capital of Olympia; and Snohomish County is Everett.

    I wonder how much revenue Oregon and Idaho lose from the marriages. Surely the money is in weddings, not the marriage license itself.

  • 10. Dan  |  December 8, 2013 at 2:23 am

    I have to say I'm really disappointed. It has been a whole year and not one church has been closed down. Joseph Backholm hasn't been arrested under R74's "arrest all Christians" provision. And first graders haven't been given a single class on sodomy.

    We were promised the unraveling of society. What is taking so long?.

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