“One of the reasons we decided to have our wedding filmed was for it to normalize same-sex marriage,” Bettencourt says.
“We wanted to share our story with the world,” Mixter says. “Much of the world is not exposed to our view and we wanted to show that marriage is great between any two people in love.”
Although most of the audience of The Real L Word is probably already in support of gay rights, Mixter says that it was worth having her most intimate day publicized if it helped to change just one person’s mind.
That person may very well have been Bettencourt’s mother. The couple says she loves Mixter but was unsettled by the thought of their marriage. “She has a lot of regrets about the wedding,” Bettencourt says. “She couldn’t understand the concept, but now she does. People in her Portuguese community were talking about it the other day and she stood up and said [paraphrasing], ‘I am proud of my daughter. I love her partner. I love my daughter. This was a big step for her. If I could change anything about her, I wouldn’t.’”
Everyone involved in the wedding has grown since the ceremony, and they all continue to grow. “We have a sense of completion,” Mixter says. “One door is closed and now we wait for another to open. Before we were married and we got into fights we would say, ‘Screw this.’ But now we have to work on things.”
“It is definitely hard work, but it’s the happiest I’ve ever been in my life,” Bettencourt says. “We are moving into adulthood in a realistic way.”