crossposted from Kathy Drasky’s Blog, KazzaDraskNewMedia


Torn Apart: United by Love, Divided by Law is a new book by LGBT activist Judy Rickard that tells the stories of same-sex binational couples, quite literally “torn apart” by US immigration laws.

“Same-sex binational couples” are gay and lesbian American citizens in loving and committed relationships with someone from another country. In many cases these couples are legally married, in the state they have lived in or in a country that recognizes same-sex marriages (i.e., Canada, The Netherlands, Spain). Some 23 countries now recognize same-sex relationships for immigration purposes (countries like Ireland, Australia, Brazil). Sadly, the US is not one of these countries, and as result Judy has written Torn Apart.

Judy and her partner Karin (who is from the UK) currently spend only 6 months of the year living together. Both are retired, and as result, work and student visas that might be able to keep them together in America are not options. Every year, Karin comes to the US to spend 6 months with Judy. Every year, her highly anticipated visit is fraught with uncertainty and left to the determination of the person behind the desk at US Customs, who can deny Karin entry simply because he or she thinks she has been to the US too many times – not because she has broken any laws.

Judy and Karin’s story (as well as those of several other same-sex binational couples told in this book) underscore how important it is to either pass the Uniting American Families Act (UAFA) or repeal the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) to stop the cruelty of separating American citizens from those they love.

With foreword by Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat, Pray, Love) who shares her “opposite-sex binational couple” love story and the happy ending the US government offered her (“marry your partner and you two can live here happily ever after”). Pre-order your copy today using the code OUT416. A kind donation will be made in your name to Out4Immigration, the all-volunteer, grassroots group that works toward ending immigration discrimination against same-sex binational couples. (Judy’s subtitle pays homage to O4I’s tagline “United by Love, Divided by Law.)