Make the Nine network apologise for failing duty of care (Bryce and Melissa, MAFS)

This is being shown in the UK for the first time now (November 21)

I appreciate that “reality tv” like this is edited and manipulated for dramatic effect. However you can’t edit things that aren’t recorded in the first place so there is clearly some element of truth to behaviours that are being screened. And what is being shown is making me physically sick.

As someone that has lived through abuse in this exact form- an unbalanced and unfair power dynamic created by lies and manipulation, mentally chipping someone’s spirit away until they are a submissive shell of who they were, perpetrators presenting themselves as a “protector”, creating an us-against-them mentality in order to separate and isolate their victim from any form of support or alliance, and straight up gaslighting to make their victim question their own psyche- I am fully aware of how horrifically this can completely break a person. And it’s written all over her face.

And this blatant behaviour has never even been called out on this show. It is textbook and obvious and not one “expert” has said a thing. The participants own families pointed it out and it still wasn’t addressed.
Instead producers have rubbed their hands in glee at such engaging content. Because it is- It makes great TV! And great TV makes money.

But MAFS has a young, impressionable audience and to allow this behaviour to be screened unchallenged is dangerous and wildly irresponsible.
This was such an obvious chance to make this into a valuable learning opportunity. To call out the behaviours and help people recognise signs of DV that aren’t always physical. There was a chance to give a voice and power to victims. That would have made equally great TV and could have literally saved lives too!

Instead it has been edited in a way that completely normalised abuse which only serves to further silence victims, and give greater confidence to abusers who think they’re doing no wrong- or worse- know they’re doing wrong feel empowered that they’ll get away with it since it doesn’t even get challenged on international TV.

You not only have a duty of care to participants in reality tv but also to your audience and by screening such vile behaviour literally across the world you are failing both.

Helen Wilson, Sunderland, United Kingdom
3 months ago
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