Same-sex couple gets engaged at the White House

Marine captain Matthew Phelps popped the question to his partner, Ben Schock, at a White House event Sunday night.


Jordan Valinsky

Internet Culture

Published Dec 17, 2012   Updated Jun 2, 2021, 5:22 am CDT

Sorry, but the dream proposal you’ve been waiting for just got upstaged by Matthew Phelps and Ben Schock, as the pair became the first same-sex couple to get engaged at the White House.

Phelps, an active U.S. Marine Corps captain, asked his boyfriend to marry him at a festive occasion Saturday. He posted pictures to his Facebook account, writing “such a special night surrounded by wonderful people in an amazing place.”

“Thanks for all the wonderful greetings and messages, and thanks to Barack Obama and Michelle Obama for lending us your home for the occasion!” Phelps wrote. The pictures circulated on Facebook, Reddit, image-sharing site Imgur, and his blog.

Wipe Out Homophobia, a Facebook group with 560,000 members, shared the picture, which collected 7,000 shares and hundreds of comments congratulating the couple. In the comments, Phelps thanked supporters and explained how the repeal of the military’s strict anti-gay law, Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, made this possible.

“[Ten] years ago when I enlisted in the Marine Corps under DADT, I never imagined I would one day propose to the man of my dreams, much less as a Marine captain still on active duty and at the White House,” Phelps wrote. “Thank you all so much for your love, support, and continued hard work to make our world a better one.”

Photo via Imgur

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*First Published: Dec 17, 2012, 3:28 pm CST