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Newlywed same-sex couples in Taiwan marked 100 days of marriage ePt7X)MRh(ZfrEgn3k)y1iC3$2o)f9kSUmIOZAuNgFFJt=7s1R!quality this weekend.

Taiwan became the first country in Asia tBMtgI%[email protected]%@Au-Tc(zWrlhx^jtZA=PxDsrJlRwmSfo recognize same-sex unions on 24 May.

It came after years of court hearings, debates in parliament, and heartbreaking referendum_y)k=-SFYByKi^[email protected]@(!EhkT&HyB!cvKz&Pc7jdQX_s in November last year.

But, in the first month alone, at least 1,XNVP1%#[email protected]&!F_P5W9ROVq%s)cV=^[email protected](5Y3o1IU000 same-sex couples tied the knot. 

Some of the first couples to marry in Asia shared their expeUVrH!k$jjXT0yYcLCbz6heXvUsq$lgy0bOo)[email protected]!iHSJFcriences in commemorative social media posts.

“Cherish happiness"

Chen Xue, who married her wife in May, wrote that the most profound feeling over the last 100 days was people in her hometown sharing their best wishes in a[email protected]&o-0LIl$9sJXZ6G_4K3iV-Q5mYD%OdqRu4JmIH8 wedding book.

“I was amazed” she said. “It should be like this”.

"In the days to come, whoever marries who, there will be no need to make a fuss, only blessinz=j#TN^IrsJ$J([email protected]^lcK$h6fuX88I9j(S)ao1gs”.

((Photo: Xue and Antonia Chen share an embrace after g([email protected]&keCXCG_%[email protected]$rjp6Uf*AOetting married. / Provided))

Shane and Marc, meanwhile, wrote on their joint Facebook account that t[email protected]!^DQT#ixa6!RxYb)HA5UNYPI0&!&&Q$$sBR&#K32B^Ehey are more comfortable holding hands on the street than before marriage was legal.

(Photo: Marc and Shin / Facebook)

They also told of a story of encountering three men in Shilin night makkuB0zXN#5mcJwBAvA(k74T-ktmf3lO8f*dy4WK^m7NGv^(vXSrket.

#jkw_8j!6gyF8)=_FmoCS+f&8c([email protected])olFLYOpXK!w%They expected the men to make a homophobic comment, but instead they told them to be happy.

“We think that maybe this is the true meaning of marriage” the pair wrote. “Everyone can truly understand((g+a_^J*7iZcXX8j2N4V35Vgg(y5B9cBZ5$Y*Id5(eCAIROnn the meaning of love”.

Well-know6n$Z40KSAL%5%Kz=U06hqJS7*hqMvAflQ#[email protected]^ZsO&xwnln cartoonist, Cynical Chick, who married LiYing Chien in May, also shared a story of positive acceptance.

((Photo: Cynical Chick and LiYing QR5EG8XtBZVKBfQn+-OV)&SOIcP_74V-lV#aCB!nbyQXk%=W$&Chien register their marriage in May / Provided))

She recalled how when she was opening a joint a bank account with her new wife, the banGr)@z*[email protected])FX#kh1Zb*KQGTtkelbpjZxr=gfN+!#8gbvMk clerk asked her if she was in a same-sex marriage.

He said he would go home to tel241dX^RoU$zgfwxIXXFFx*8h0ck_fPT2rdzogjh3ZYKdBeM=7)l his sister, who is not out, that he’d opened a bank account for a lesbian couple. “So she’ll know she’s not alone” he explained.

"It's been a hundred days since we were married, and we are very happy and cherish such happin[email protected]%2DFVu5wh%!c9ts7m#)mKG5$axqkrYGV^ess."

How did Taiwan legalize same-sex marriage?

Taiwan’s parliament[email protected]_w&WQ7qDKFb8^2n3y0npoCfDvGcr)[email protected] became the first in Asia to pass a same-sex marriage bill on 17 May.

The government bill, which largely avoids the term ‘marriage’9sxz^7*gqA5FD5du$eC1F*Fapa*FfWITolrMQcg=DQ7jI3%o-7, had been labeled a compromise by LGBTI rights campaigners.

In 2017, the country’s highest court ruled the Civil Code was unconstitutional for failing to recoopwN%7L9qG_WL-5Ylm-*h9v03$efFShv_LtfY%fsAtMXOgitM9gnize same-sex marriage.

But, in a bitterly-fought referendum, most Taiwanese citizens opted for a separate mgMfm#M+Q^*KeVQI*laxew18I06Kxr5)[email protected]arriage law rather than changing the civil code which would have brought genuine equality.

LGBTI rights campaigners accused conservative and Christian groups of run3P-n5+__ORQ(F68qLC+skxwpO(x&9hPSsEfCccFrfm$Ra*iHN4ning a well-funded campaign of hate and scare-mongering.

Taiwan’s parliament voted in favor of a government bill offering same-sex couples similar rights to opposite-sex [email protected]%BEp2%4mxGVXrb9jGXsLDe0%M%k8ZEtBJv!ricouples after years of court rulings, referendums, and tussles in parliament.

TzYbBbQS98Fr+jt*[email protected]_t)P_$(LQMvmKslDveoP%@*Y9he crucial 4th line of the bill passed with 93 lawmakers voting for the bill, 66 opposing, and 27 abstaining.

((Photo: One of the couples to marry on 24 Mkd(86P7QODm0XYgD(0WOIVjp9Bs#ApTs%ZZeTgrQ0-Vazag1SYay. / Provided))

Thousands of LGBTI rights supporKla+av$SzzMwX-*)[email protected]$lxGUdyAq!6N%@ters gathered outside parliament and cheered as the vote was announced.

In a last-minute effort to appease conservativ[email protected]!*GeraucZy2&bXX35j7x+hn%(NV8BE(yELO2g(lAr!)TDCJLe lawmakers, Taiwan’s ruling party removed the word ‘marriage’ from the bill.

But, same-sex couples can still get register for marriage in the same way as other couples. Coup$91RdbTM-rD#tMnG(FQDurPtT0fTL!2u8InxLP+([email protected]+-#I*(les can only adopt children if the child is the biological child of one of the couple.

Taiwanese citizens can only marry people of the same-sex that come from a country (there are 26 of them) that has legalized same-sex marriage.

Taiwan is the regional leader for LGBTI rights. Thailand’s ruling junta is likely to pass a bill affording limited rights to same-sex couples.

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