Matt Murphy and Michael O’Sullivan are best friends. O’Sullivan, 58, is also Murphy’s caretaker. Together the two of them are making worldwide news after they got married – because they’re straight.
Murphy, 83, has giant cell arteritis – a disease that has slowly robbed him of his sight – and as after the friends of 30 years moved in together, he wanted to leave O’Sullivan his house as “payment” for taking care of him for years.
But when O’Sullivan investigated, he found out he’d have to sell their home to pay for the inheritance taxes he would owe. So the two got married.
“I’ve known Matty for 30 years. We became very friendly after my second relationship broke up,” O’Sullivan told the Irish Mirror after the ceremony.
“I lost my apartment and then I was living in somebody’s house. That house was sold and I ended up being homeless. Matty then unfortunately got a problem with his eyes, he started getting pains in his head. His vision started to get bad.
“He’s on 12 steroids a day, very, very strong stuff. When he went home, he struggled. I stayed over with him for a while and eventually Matt said ‘Why don’t you come and stay here?’ I would go over and stay with him the odd time but never full time,” he continued.
“He said he would give me the house so I have somewhere to live when he goes. With what would be left over you wouldn’t have had enough left to buy another house.
“He was chatting a friend down the country in Cashel, Co Tipperary, and she jokingly said we should get married,” he told the paper. “Then one night he turned around and said it to me and I said I would marry him.”
“The equality gay and lesbian people did for this country, that they fought hard for, they were discriminated against for most of their lives, they got equality for themselves but also for everybody else.”
“He’s always so concerned about me. He’s my best friend,” Murphy added.
Isn’t that what love is all about?
While much of the uproar has been about the two gentlemen’s sexual orientation, people seem to forget that marriage has historically been a financial arrangement and not about love. Many people get married not because they have fantastic sexual chemistry, but because they enjoy being around each other.
Some people, both straight and queer couples, don’t have sex at all due to various circumstances or choices like health issues, age, general lack of interest, or one of the partners may have a different sexual orientation than their spouse.
Instead of joining the moral outrage campaign over the men’s marriage, let us be the first to say “Mazel tov!” and wish the two a lifetime of happiness together. That is what marriage should be about.