Illustration Credit: Webdesignhot via all-free-download.com

Have your own story to share about a unique and special relationship? Share it in our comment section below!

With Valentine’s Day coming up, qnotes thought it would be touching to hear directly from local couples who have found themselves in unique and special relationships. You often hear that old cliché — that “opposites attract.” Sometimes, it’s true. We reached out to readers and the public and asked couples to participate in our short Q&A in celebration of Valentine’s Day and our annual Love & Lust issue. Here are three who responded with their personal stories…

paige_jen
Paige & Jennifer

Engaged on Jan. 10, Paige Dula and Jennifer Story initially met on Match.com.

“Paige winked at me,” Jennifer says. It was the start of a blossoming relationship now 10 months in the making, though they say it “seems a lot longer, in a good way.”

The couple shares many differing characteristics.

“Paige is a computer geek, and I’m a social worker,” Story says. “Paige is transgender and I am cisgender. Paige is very focused and detail-oriented and I get distracted and probably have un-diagnosed ADHD.”

Despite their personal differences, they’re in it for the long haul. “We both the other is amazing,” they say. “We respect each other. We are each other’s best friend and greatest cheerleader.”

And the responses to their relationship have been positive, too. Jennifer’s children have been accepting and the rest of their families have been affirming, too.

“If we pinpoint any negative, it has come from one or two of my lesbian friends who seem to mix up and don’t understand the difference between gender identity and sexual orientation, but they’ve learned to deal with it or be gone,” Jennifer says.

The couple adds, “Having so much support, makes us feel very good, and helps us ignore any negative feedback.  The good simply over-shadows the bad.”

“We know it’s awesome,” Jennifer and Paige say of their love.

david_edward
Edward & David

Of our three featured couples, Edward McCray and David De’ Laurentis have been together the shortest. They met through a mutual friend two-and-a-half months ago and hit it off.

The guys say they’ve found plenty of unique things about their relationship — their height differential among them. Edward is six feet tall, and David is just 5’5”. As an interracial couple, they also find some difference. Edward is African American and David is Mexican and Spanish.

But the couple doesn’t focus on their differences, saying they’re not “really sure that there are things that make us unique.” Their circle of friends, too, have seen no reason to focus on the differences.

“It’s been completely positive so far,” the couple says. “At this time,

we really have not been treated any different from any other couple, gay or straight.”

And, like any relationship, they most value their honesty and commitment to each other.

“We acknowledge each other’s pasts and leave it there,” they say. “The communication and drive we both have is amazing.”

Nate & Chad

Together now for more than three years, Nate Turner and Chad Sevearance met through mutual friends on the Charlotte Royals Rugby Team — moving from friends to a relationship and, just last May, getting engaged. They’ll be married this April.

The couple say they’re unique in several ways. In addition to being an interracial couple, they also share a difference in age. Nate is 26 and Chad is 37. And they’re both from somewhat different parts of the county. Nate hails from Maryland and Chad is a North Carolina native.

Reaction to their relationship from strangers hasn’t always been kind. Once, when Chad’s mother was rushed to the emergency room, Nate was stopped and questioned about his relationship — discrimination stemming from both his same-gender relationship and skin color.

“After Nate was banned from the property for trespassing, I contacted the hospital administration on duty and the problem was corrected and an apology given by the doctor on duty and chief nursing officer as well as a written letter from the VP of Ops for the issue,” Chad says of the incident.

But the differences that once led to discrimination are cherished and accepted by family, friends and colleagues.

“We feel our friends reflect the diversity within our own relationship,” they say. : :

Have your own unique relationship story to share? Want to tell the world about you and your partner’s love, despite differences like skin color, age, gender, political views, religious affiliation or other differences? Share your story below in our comments section!

Matt Comer

Matt Comer previously served as editor from October 2007 through August 2015 and as a staff writer afterward in 2016.