MAFS dad needs to back right off
THIS week, Married at First Sight viewers had the distinct displeasure of watching Cheryl's father, Hamish, tear the unsuspecting and undeserving Andrew a new one during their home visit on the Sunshine Coast.
His crime? Daring to turn up to Hamish's house in shorts and a T-shirt despite the fact the old grump was standing there dishing out insults in exactly the same outfit.
Watching this man try to belittle, intimidate and humiliate Andrew despite knowing absolutely nothing about him as a person was difficult to watch without needing blood pressure medication, but it highlighted more than just how unimpressive it is to see someone put another person down.
It also brought up the issue of parents who think they get to decide who their children date.
I hate to break it to you, Mr Congeniality, but it has nothing to do with you.
Yes, you created the person you seem intent on embarrassing in front of a potential suitor but you don't own them or their decisions.
I'm always amazed by parents who don't possess the emotional intelligence to understand how counter-productive this kind of behaviour is.
Suggesting that who your children love is your choice shows an incredible arrogance and a need for control and it only ever ends up pushing away the person you claim you're trying to protect. Most often right into the arms of the person you think is unsuitable.
Watching Cheryl's dad stand there and tell Andrew he's somehow not good enough, that he's not dressed properly and that he's "nothing" was not only disgusting it was completely hypocritical.
I don't think the greatest judge of character is the bloke raining aggressive insults down on the guy who spends his working week saving people from burning buildings.
If you truly want to break a couple up, you'd have a better chance of doing it by being a warm and inviting parent who's always open and honest with their kids and respects their decisions.
That way, when you don't like someone and the kid comes to you for advice they're probably going to listen to it. But if all you ever do is make every man who walks through the door measure their hand against yours in some pathetic d**k swinging competition, anything you say is likely to be discounted as noise from a bloke who's marking his territory.
I'm surprised after blasting Andrew for his outfit and telling him to skol his whiskey to see what kind of a man he was, Hamish didn't walk around the kitchen and take a pee on all the cupboards.
If you really cared about your kids you'd realise this ridiculous display of completely unnecessary machismo does more harm to your relationship than good.
And it's not just fathers. Recently on Bride and Prejudice we saw a similar example of something gay men everywhere have been dealing with for years.
Chris, the son of Jehovah's Witness mother, Yvonne, asked his parents if they'd do him the honour of attending his wedding. And while Yvonne's wasn't quite as agro as Hamish her response was arguably even more heartbreaking.
She calmly and in a considered manner told him "it's not going to happen" because of her beliefs.
At least if someone is screaming at you, you can tell yourself they might have gotten carried away in the moment but when a parent looks you dead in the eye and says they don't accept you for who you are, that's devastating.
Often this behaviour is justified with words like "I'm just protective" or "I only want what's best for my child."
No, you don't. You want what's best for you. You've got an idea in your head of the version of your life you're happy to portray to others, including who your son or daughter dates. This completely discounts the fact you have no control over the feelings, emotions and decisions of anyone else, even your kids.
As a parent, you're supposed to love your child unconditionally and help them become the person they're meant to be not the person that fits the narrative you've created for yourself.
Watching Cheryl's dad act in a way that was completely unjustifiable and then tell the producers he was somehow entitled to behave like that showed the entire performance wasn't about Cheryl, it was about him.
You might tell yourself you're being protective or looking out for the best interests of the person you love but what you're really doing is being a bully.