tv

These Australian parents refused to attend their son's wedding, instead they sent a video message.

For the past five episodes of Bride and Prejudice, Australia has watched with a box of tissues by their side as several couples have struggled with their family’s disapproval of their chosen partners.

From age difference to sexuality to religion, all have been hard to watch. But there is one story that has grabbed us the most – that of Chris and his partner (now husband) Grant.

Over the last few weeks, we’ve seen him try to convince his very traditional and devout Jehovah’s Witness parents to give their approval for his relationship and attend his wedding.

Listen: If there’s one dating show you should be talking about – it’s Bride and Prejudice. 

“It’s not going to happen Chris. You know I have very strong beliefs on that. For us, it’s not an option. I find homosexuality to be wrong, it’s actually condemned in the bible,” his mum Yvonne told him after he broke the news that he was getting married.

In a later secret meeting, Chris’ father said it was just something he couldn’t accept.

“I don’t hate you or anything. Just some of your choices run the wrong way way with us. It’s not the way I was brought up,” he said.

All season we’ve been waiting to see if they would turn up to watch him commit to Grant. In last night’s finale, we found out the answer.

They didn’t show up. On a day that was so very important to their son, despite him leaving them airplane tickets, they chose not to attend.

But their absence – or even news of their absence, which was delivered to Chris on the morning of his wedding by his aunt and uncle – wasn’t even the most heartbreaking part.

ADVERTISEMENT

“The one person in the world who is supposed to love you is not going to be there. It just makes me angry,” Chris said after finding out.

Bride-and-prejudice-finale-feature
Image: Channel 7

There was another moment that brought us - and Chris - to tears. A video message from his mum explaining how she felt and why she and his father could never support him in his decision.

"We also know that what you want us to be able to give you which is acceptance of your personal life choices, and Chris, we can't," she said.

"But in saying that we do want to know how well you're doing, we do want to know that you are well and ok. But now you really are about to do something we find very, very hard to accept. And that is to actually have a wedding ceremony.

"I hold marriage very sacred, so I can't give you that acceptance or be part of your life. That part of your life is just not compatible with ours but your life is yours to live as you see fit. We want you to know that we do love you and we want you to keep well. That's really all I've got to say at this stage," she said, visibly upset before turning away from the camera.

The hurt was clear as day on Chris' face, each comment from his mother inflicting more damage.

"My preference would have been to not hear from them all and them not be there rather than get a message like that," he said.

Yvonne-laptop-message
ADVERTISEMENT

"There’s two things my mum could’ve done. One of the options was she could’ve said, ‘As much as we disagree with you choosing to marry Grant, I hope you have good day. We can’t be there because of our beliefs but we wish you well’," he told news.com.au

"But she chose another option. While I knew she didn’t show up, I didn’t need to hear the reasons why she wasn’t there."

Re-watching the moment on Sunrise this morning made Chris get emotional all over again.

"I'm looking at it again and I’m like, "God dammit, look," he told David Koch.

"They're a team and that was probably dad supporting mum’s decisions."

Listen: Laura Brodnik and Tiffany Dunk talk all the latest TV news. Post continues after audio.

Chris says there has been some contact since the wedding, which was filmed in October.

"I’ve had a brief conversation with my dad after we did some media. And the gist of that conversation was he was proud of the fact we weren’t sensationalising anything that happened and weren’t embellishing and trying to be true. And given the opportunity, if we were ever up that way (in Queensland), he would take the time to meet Grant," he told news.com.au

"In relation to my mum, I have only heard from her via email where she basically sent me a transcript of what was in the video because she was worried the video would be edited to make her look unfavourable."

Despite the his parent's absence, Grant and Chris had a beautiful ceremony in Palm Springs, with Grant's parents eager to welcome him into the family.

How did you feel watching that moment?

00:00 / ???