Thousands Sign Petition Calling For Channel 9 To Apologise For Triggering MAFS Couple
Married At First Sight isn't exactly known for its success in pairing up happy couples and is instead well known for bucketloads of drama, tears, yelling matches and the like.
But the behaviour witnessed in one couple this season has many viewers triggered over what some have dubbed as emotionally abusive behaviour.
Bryce Ruthven and Melissa Rawson have proved to be one of the season's most controversial pairings, to the point where viewers have now launched a Change.org petition over one particular scene.
According to Angela Rowell, who started the online campaign, the couple has apparently displayed 'an excessive amount of [domestic violence] signs which are not being handled by the network appropriately'.
The petition continued: "These signs are being disregarded by producers and the network and Melissa is being subjected to mental torture, very obviously to the viewer, creating a distressing viewing experience, ESPECIALLY THOSE WHO ARE VICTIMS OF DV RELATIONSHIPS."
There's a long list of things that have been done or said between the bride and groom that it would be too long to list.
But here are a few.
Bryce told Melissa she's 'not ugly, just not my type' - despite Melissa sharing her history with low self-esteem. He also voted to 'leave' Melissa during a commitment ceremony but changed the card at the last minute to reflect 'stay'. He also lied to Melissa about flirting with co-star Beck Zemek.
Despite his continued gross behaviour, Melissa shockingly told the experts she was falling in love with Bryce, while other couples who watched on made no secret of their disdain for Bryce.
Beck Zemek said 'he doesn't care about her' and Patrick Dwyer commented that he 'doesn't get' Bryce's logic.
The viewer petition added: "There is a clear failure of duty of care to Melissa during filming of the show, allowing her to remain in a toxic and dangerous environment with her partner for the 'benefit' of the network.
"She is being subject to gaslighting, emotional manipulation, isolation, and countless other TEXTBOOK signs of a controlling and or abusive relationship.
"The network has also failed duty of care to viewers putting together a final edit that shows these signs, supporting the relationship, and completely ignoring the obvious signs of control and abuse Melissa is subject to."
They added: "This situation is incredibly triggering and stressful to watch."
"This petition is for The Nine Network to acknowledge and apologise for letting Melissa go through this and also airing such a horrible relationship on television without doing anything to showcase that the relationship is clearly not healthy," it concluded.
According to The Wash, the Australian Communications and Media Authority has already received 14 complaints about this year's season, with four of those related to Bryce and Melissa.
Featured Image Credit: Nine