Queer, polyamorous couple traded traditional wedding garb for 'gender-bending' ensembles

Nico Tortorella marries longtime partner Bethany Meyers. (Photo: Courtesy of Victoria Matthews)

Many people visualize their wedding day complete with floral bouquets, a set of rings, and some sort of traditional wedding attire — whether it be a white gown or a black-and-white tux. But for this queer, polyamorous couple who just tied the knot after 11 years together, what they may have once pictured their wedding wear to look like evolved entirely with their beliefs of the union.

In an essay for Conde Nast’s queer publication them.Younger actor Nico Tortorella and his longtime partner Bethany Meyers wrote about the ceremony that made their more-than-decade-long relationship official. And while Meyers admits to having once fantasized about what it would look like, both of them agreed that it ended up being anything but ordinary.

Tortorella, who identifies as bisexual, says he had always seen himself becoming a husband of some sort, while Meyers, who identifies as gay, shares that she figured she would become “Mrs. New Last Name.”

“I remember being 16 years old, having sleepovers with my besties, combing through bridal magazines, cutting out favorite photos of flowers, rings, dresses, and colors,” Meyers began the piece, later reflecting on what her big day had actually become. “The wedding day. No guests. No flowers. No rings. My ‘dress,’ consisting of trousers. His ‘tux,’ gown inclusive. I suppose you would dub our wedding color white. It was certainly the most traditional thing we did.”

From the gorgeous photos, white is undeniably the most traditional aspect of the pair’s nuptials. The most meaningful, however, were the ensembles they wore, which Tortorella refers to as gender-bending.

Their gender-bending ensembles were designed by friend Andrew Morrison. (Photo: Courtesy of Victoria Matthews)

“Timeless androgynous paraphernalia mimicking Romanesque sculpture that fluidly blends masculine and feminine,” the 28-year-old actor wrote. “In this relationship, we both wear the pants and the dress. We put on our faces and machinery, finally topping each other off in crowns. Duh, we wore crowns. Not for the gag of it all, but because it feels like something we’ve done in the past, so we had to keep the tradition alive. In this life’s iteration, this is, in fact, our royal wedding.”

Designed by a close friend of the couple’s, Andrew Morrison, the outfits worn by both Tortorella and Meyers included pants overlaid with a flowing skirt. And clearly inspired by a Roman aesthetic, the designer took a cue from statues notable for their gender fluidity. The duality of the looks, and the fact that the pair is matching, represents so much of what they stand for as a married couple.

“If you had to label it, Nico and I are in a queer, polyamorous relationship. Labels that help people understand, but not labels that define us,” Meyers wrote. “It’s just the way our relationship developed over 12 years. We became polyamorous without ever really trying, and we let each other go so often; I guess we finally realized it’s the reason we are impenetrable. It’s hard to break something that bends.”

And as bending as they believe their gender roles to be, they hope to reach a place of understanding with people by illustrating that what brings them together is just what brings any couple together: unbreakable love.

The couple holds hands as they say their vows. (Photo: Courtesy of Victoria Matthews)

“As nontraditional as our day may be, I was surprised by the traditional emotions that swept over me that weekend,” said Meyers. “The rush of excitement when the finishing touches were placed on our outfits, the tears that came during vows, the anticipation I felt to see our wedding photos and send them to family and friends.”

She added: “I realized that no matter what type of wedding you may have, the rush of love will be forever present, because that is the universal bond found in all sacred unity.”

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