Gay couple’s photos taken 35 years apart go viral on Twitter

L-R: Murray and Peter, and more recently, Peter and Murray (Photos: Peter Robinson)

A Tweet a Tasmanian man posted to mark the 35th anniversary of meeting the love of his life has gone viral on Twitter.

In it, Peter Robinson, 70, shared a photo of himself and partner, Murray Buchanan, 64, as young men, alongside a photo of them today.

At the time of writing, the Tweet has had over 320,000 likes and thousands of retweets. Many have been touched by the simple display of long-lasting, same-sex love.

Peter told Queerty more about his relationship with Murray, revealing: “We met at a nightclub on a Friday night. I was introduced to him by his ex-partner.” The club was Connections in Perth, Western Australia. Commonly known as Connie’s, it’s still running today.

“It was just before the AIDS epidemic hit in Australia,” says Peter.

At the time, same-sex relationships were not legal in Tasmania.

“It wasn’t until 1997 that Tasmania passed legislation to recognize same-sex relationships. The federal government passed protections in 1999.

“We were fairly active in the early days for recognition and acceptance. I think the main opposition to equality was the AIDS epidemic. We spent several years working for the AIDS council as volunteers and carers.”

Related: Gay guys explain why they ended long-term relationships

The men are not married. However, Peter says to celebrate the passing of equality legislation in 2000, “We registered our relationship as significant other as marriage wasn’t an option at that time. That was not legal until 2017 in Australia. The registration gives us the same rights as a married couple and doesn’t bring religion into it. We did not see a reason for it. Murray did propose in 2000 on an overseas trip.”

Peter said he’d been overwhelmed by the response to his Tweet.

Many said they wished they could find similar love.

Some shared their own age-gap photos.

The tweet has prompted responses from all over the world. Peter said it was sobering to realize how many people live in places where living openly in a same-sex relationship is not possible.

“So many LGBTQI people do not have the same opportunities that we had. There is still so much discrimination and violence against LGBTQI. There appears to be a resurgence in violence against our community. Thus we still get involved in protesting.

“There are literally thousands of brilliant people out there working to recognize and support younger members of our community.”

Finally, as a couple who have been together for so long, Queerty asked Peter if he had any advice for keeping a long-term relationship working.

He said they make sure to give each other space to pursue their own hobbies or dreams. Beyond this, “We basically have two rules: 1. Never go to bed on an argument. 2. And resolve an argument before leaving each other for work, etc. Always part with a kiss. It may be the last one you ever have. Sounds silly and simple,” he chuckles, “but it has worked for us.”

Related: Wise words from older gay people to their younger selves

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