Simple Human Dignity: My Life, My Wife, Our Story


As Arlene Goldberg grew up in post-World War II New York, she couldn’t have imagined one day becoming known as a pioneer and history maker credited with changing same-sex marriage laws in Florida. Young Arlene was a typical girl. She had a loving relationship with her family, did fine in school, dated boys, and enjoyed all the milestones of youth. Then she met Carol and fell in love. That’s when destiny stepped in and began to shape the future.In the years that followed, Arlene loved Carol with a ferocity and devotion many people only dream about. And that love drove them both into hiding and into the proverbial closet, where they lived in secret for decades. No marriage license could have made their bond more solid or enduring—and yet without that piece of paper, they were denied basic spousal rights.Through tragic illness and terrible loss, the love of Arlene and her wife Carol would go on to shape history, free many to marry those they love, and make our heroine a beloved and revered pioneer in the LGBTQ+ community.

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