Showing posts from July, 2014

Book Review: I Left My Husband for The Au Pair

I Left My Husband for The Au Pair by Michele Macfarlane is the author's own candid account of leaving a safe, loving relationship with a man to be with the woman she'd employed to care for the children.  It's the story of a woman discovering her own sexuality at the cost of a secure and stable family life. It's hard not to like Michele both as an author and as a central character. Her friendly, conversational tone treats the reader as a confident rather than an observer and, despite the difficult choices she makes to secure her own happiness, it's a story that's easy to invest in. It's a very personal account (and it comes with an explicit content warning on the jacket) but the sex scenes, whilst intimate, are written with a natural honesty rather than titillation. They reflect, too, the rather tender issue of body image and self-confidence and I imagine that many women, lesbian or not, will relate to Michele's reluctance to appear totally uncloth

How To Make Small Talk At Weddings

*This post was updated July 30th 2015* The service  was delightful. The brides looked divine. The grooms were as handsome as you’ve ever seen them. You made small talk with the mother-in-law, buried your face in the order of service when everyone was  hugging , and mouthed hello to someone you vaguely remember from the hag do.  Now, you’re standing in the car park and everyone’s hanging around before the reception, but you don’t have anyone to talk to. Or maybe, you are with people you know. Maybe you’re laughing all the way to the reception until – ARE YOU KIDDING ME!? – You read the place settings only to realise that you’re sitting on a table with people you don’t know. Suddenly, you can’t kick your shoes off under the table; you can’t bury your face in the salmon starter, and you can’t do that party trick with a glass of water, a penny and the tablecloth. Well, you could... Oh, but THANK THE STARS , at least there’s wine. Being polite shouldn't be so

Gay Friendly Honeymoon Destinations & Those to Avoid

You might remember that we recently launched our Pink Paradise Travel Club  because what's the next best thing after the wedding day? The honeymoon, of course.  And when you're in a same-sex relationship it's important to be aware of the different cultural attitudes towards homosexuality. Air travel may have made the world smaller, but in some places the attitudes are very different to those that we've come to expect in the UK.  So, if you're looking for a honeymoon destination, it's worth doing a bit of background research. In May 2014, The Guardian reported that more than 2.7 billion people live in countries where homosexuality is a crime . This means that a considerable portion of the planet is either unavailable, inadvisable or potentially problematic for same-sex couples. It isn't all bad news however... Back in March of this year, ABTA announced a list of the top-ten gay friendly destinations: Brighton, UK Puerto Vallarta, Mexico Cape

Croatia Passes Civil Partnership Bill & Nicky Morgan is the New Minister for Equalities.

čestitam, Croatia! On July 15th 2014, Croatia passed legislation allowing same-sex couples to become civil partners. Pink News reported the law change on Tuesday, saying: "It means same-sex couples will now enjoy equal inheritance rights, social benefits and tax deductions.  Their unions will be called ”life partnerships” protected by the Constitution."  [Read full article here]  The legislation does not include rights on adoption, but it's an important step in a country where 65% of people recently voted in favour of a constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Campaigners are hopeful that the normalisation of civil partnership  will lead to a wider acceptance of same-sex marriage in the future.  Cabinet Re-shuffle. In other news, David Cameron has appointed Nicky Morgan as the new Equalities Minister. The MP for Loughborough had previously voted against same-sex marriage.  In 2013, she told the Leicester Mercury that marriage was 'between a man a

Gay Pride Summer Part II

You may remember (or not, it's been a long year...) that some months back, we wrote a post about pride events happening over the summer. We couldn't feature all of them, but now might be a good opportunity to offer a part II. The events that we've chosen to feature have been picked randomly, but we've listed others, too, below.   For events that kick-off after August, we'll do a later post. You lucky, lucky things. First up, NEWCASTLE PRIDE kicks off on Friday July 18th . They have a weekend of music and events including: Shayne Ward, Vengaboys and Sinitta. For those who like their fun with a calorie burn, there's a 5KM fun run, too. You can find out more here On Sunday 20th July , it's BRIGHTON DOGGY PRIDE. This poochy pride celebrates dogs and their owners and is run in association with Coastway Veterinary Group and The Dog's Trust. Crufts it might not be, but there will be classes, refreshments and opportunities to spoil your dog with a ra

Big Wedding Weekend at Royal Festival Hall

If you're looking to get married this summer, then it isn't too late. From August 30th - 31st, London's Southbank Centre will host a wedding weekend where couples can marry on the Royal Festival Hall stage. If you've already been married, then you're welcome to renew your vows, too. It's all part of the Southbank's Festival of Love  celebrating the passing of equal marriage earlier in the year. The festival runs until the 31st August and you can find their website here The ceremonies are open to all couples regardless of gender, sexuality or age. Providing, of course, that you are legally entitled to be married. Across the weekend, there will be 8 ceremonies during which 20 couples will be married. Each couple will be married separately before their friends and family and they'll be able to enjoy the use of choirs, live music and photographers. Following the ceremony, there will be a range of activities for the newly weds with evening enter

Pink Paradise Travel Club

We're very pleased to announce the launch of our Travel Club *insert fanfare* Through our perfect partner Not Just Travel , you can book your dream trip overseas. Our holiday partner can help tailor make your entire trip: flights, hotels, insurance and transfers can all be booked in a single transaction. It's not just for same-sex couples though, it's for anyone and everyone. In fact, if you're in a same-sex couple, we'd recommend that you consult the FCO website first for travel warnings as some destinations might not be gay-friendly. You can find the website here Let us know what you think via our Twitter,   Facebook  or via our contact form.

Whose Surname Do We Use?

Now, I don't want to get on my soapbox and start  chanting 'down with the Patriarchy'  but what's so amazing about same-sex marriages is how they champion new traditions and encourage equality between partners. When same-sex couples get married there's no automatic assumption about surnames in the way that there is in an opposite-sex marriage. Gay couples HAVE to have a conversation about surnames and that's how it should be: people deciding together rather than hat tipping to tradition. Of course, there are a number of options available to same-sex couples: You don't have to change anyone's name . Years ago, a woman took her husband's name to integrate into his family. It was a business transaction taking her from the protection of her father and into to the care of her husband. Today, it's a tradition that is both redundant and yet widely maintained. For same-sex couples, there's no tradition to comply wi

Civil Partnerships Converted to Marriage for FREE

It was announced today that couples who entered into a civil partnership before same-sex marriage became legal in March 2014 will not have to pay to convert their partnership into marriage.  They will have a year from December 10th 2014 to apply. Once the year is up, they'll then have to pay £45 along with the couples whose civil partnerships have taken place since March.  The news was announced today (July 3rd) in Parliament by Culture Secretary Sajid Jarvis.  The news is likely to be welcomed by gay rights campaigners who were highly critical of the Government's failure to put into place a timetable for conversion. According to the BBC website, draft legislation is being submitted today. We'll keep you updated on any further details. In the meantime, you might find some of our other posts helpful: Civil Partnerships Can be Converted from December 10th What Will a Marriage Offer that a Civil Partnership Doesn't? If We Already Have a Civil Partnership S