The couple has adopted four foster children, one with a developmental disability. Tom Patrick works part-time to care for the kids.
"If he has to go back to work full-time, that hurts our family. Or we have to pay for health benefits out of pocket, which hurts our family," said Dennis Patrick, one of 21 plaintiffs who sued the state.
He worries the ruling could immediately strip Tom's insurance unless it's halted by the Michigan Supreme Court, where the case will be appealed.
"It's pretty scary," he said. "To me that either demonstrates a lack of understanding of how this can affect our family or other families, or it's just mean and cruel."
"This is pretty unprecedented. People are very, very surprised and shocked by it," said Jeffery Montgomery, executive director of the Triangle Foundation, a gay rights group in Michigan. "It just seems like such a needless slam on gay and lesbian families. The health and livelihood of their families is at stake in this ruling."
Conservatives, however, are lauding the decision and say the court interpreted the amendment's clear wording.
"Since two-thirds of all the marriage amendments are more similar to Michigan's language, who's to say that the Michigan decision won't be the prevailing precedent in the future?" said Gary Glenn, the president of the American Family Association of Michigan who helped write Michigan's measure.
You know, I worried about the repercussions when that amendment passed. I am not happy about this...
....I want to be proud of my state. And this is just so....I don't know. I don't think this case is done by any means, though...
Anyway, I thought the information was worth posting, especially since there's a chance this could set a precedent that could affect other states.