Binational Same-Sex Couples and Families

Historically, the topics of same-sex marriage and immigration reform have been debated as separate political issues. Both issues, however, have impacted the lives of LGBTQ immigrants and their American partners. Presently in the United States, families that include same-sex binational couples are part of the increasingly diverse family landscape. Binational couples are defined here as same-sex partnerships in which one spouse or partner is an American citizen or resident and the other is a foreign national. For years, the ideological underpinnings inherent in immigration laws separated committed couples, forced couples into exile, and resulted in the deportation of partners/spouses of Americans under the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA). This entry describes the sociocultural context in which binational couples are situated and the challenges they face ...

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