They’re the gay couple who won the hearts of Australians after last week’s episode of Bride & Prejudice. Chris’ fractured relationship with his Jehovah’s Witness mother Yvonne and his straight-laced, conservative father Geoff shocked viewers after hearing their thoughts on their son’s homosexuality.
Yvonne claimed: ‘I feel that my son has died,’ while Geoff revealed he didn’t hate his son, but was unsure if he loved him.
Now, Chris exclusively opens up to New Idea about the hardship of growing up gay in his strict religious household.
‘I couldn’t compete with Jesus,’ says the 39-year-old. ‘I could sit here and argue, but it’s not going to get through. My mum’s eternal salvation and my eternal salvation as opposed to how I live my life now, obviously that [her religion] is her priority. It’s hard to use logic with people who don’t recognise a logical argument.’
In last week’s episode, Chris proposed to his long-term partner Grant, 32, and they set about breaking the exciting news to their parents. While Grant’s mum and dad were elated with the news, Chris knew telling
his parents would be difficult.
‘I always knew I was different, but being told that difference was wrong from a young age was hard,’ Chris recalls. ‘In my early teens, I remember some footage of the Sydney Mardi Gras came on the TV and my parents’ reaction – they really vilified the people who were participating and all I could think of was: “Oh my God, that’s me.” I knew from that point I had to make a decision – would I continue to suppress that and follow the religious line, or would I break away? I chose the latter obviously.’
For the full story, see this week’s New Idea – out now.