What could be more wholesome than a family torn apart by divorce because the husband discovers that he likes men?

Family dynamics are complicated, for sure. As a product of divorce, myself, I can’t say there is anything wholesome about it. Even when parents split amicably it’s still a tragedy but not if one of them is gay, according to Good Morning America’s new spin for Pride month.

GMA aired a special that put a wholesome spin on the divorce of Jessica Frew and Steve Stoddard after the then-husband, Steve, came out as gay.

The ‘blended’ family all attend the Morman church and own a podcast where they discuss their situation which is all well and fine but it’s the wholesome spin that I found concerning.

Frew remarried a man named Matt Frew who talked about her gay ex like he’s some kind of cool accessory, saying “At the beginning, it was hard to adjust to figuring out, okay, this—this– man is going to be part of these types of functions so I better figure out how to get used to this. Now it’s like where’s Steve, when’s Steve coming? It’s like why is he so late? Can we start now?”

As for Steve and Jessica’s child Penny, Worley asked her, “I know your dad was worried about you when he was making this decision. And are you okay with everything right now?”

But did they really expect her to trash-talk her dad?

The segment just sort of echoed how ‘normal’ the media wants to make these fringe situations seem and this mass indoctrination we’re all being pushed into.

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BECKY WORLEY: Robin, good morning. Divorce, kids, custody then remarriage, oh, boy. Add in that one ex just figured out that he’s gay and factor in that all of them are Mormon, it could be really rough. But as this one family from Boise, Idaho, told me, nope, you just love people no matter what.

Meet Penny, her mom Jessica, her stepdad Matt, and her biological dad Steve. After Penny was born Steve, who was raised Mormon, finally came to terms with his identity.

STEVE STODDARD: I didn’t want to be gay and it took me a long time to admit to myself and to her that, yes, I’m gay.

JESSICA FREW: So, about two years into our marriage is when he finally came out to me and started embracing that side of himself.

WORLEY: Did that ever feel like betrayal to you?

JESSICA FREW: It felt like Steve exploring and figuring out who he was and I made a very clear point in my head to not let it become a thing of betrayal. I—I– knew it wasn’t about me.

WORLEY: He and Jessica divorced and then Steve had to figure out being a gay man and a parent.

STODDARD: There was a time where I was convinced that Penny would be better off with no dad than with a gay dad and I really went through a dark phase for a couple of years there where I was suicidal and really struggled with just seeing the value in me being able to live a natural life that I had been taught was so wrong and that was worse than death itself.

WORLEY: But one ally through the process was his ex-wife, supporting him emotionally, always inviting him to events and making sure Penny was a part of his life.

WORLEY: Where did you find the grace to have that approach?

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JESSICA FREW:  I’ve always had an innate gift to just kind of love myself and embrace who I was created to be and I feel like when you do that, you’re able to help other people do that along the way too and recognize that the things that they are going through has nothing to do with you personally.

WORLEY: Then Jessica remarried Matt who wasn’t initially sure go having his new wife’s ex around so much and Steve and his boyfriend now celebrate events with the family.

MATT FREW: At the beginning, it was hard to adjust to figuring out, okay, this—this– man is going to be part of these types of functions so I better figure out how to get used to this. Now it’s like where’s Steve, when’s Steve coming? It’s like why is he so late? Can we start now?

WORLEY: And they all try to communicate as a group when it comes to Penny. And about Penny.

I know your dad was worried about you when he was making this decision. And are you okay with everything right now?

PENNY FREW: Yeah, it just seems normal.

WORLEY: The family has a podcast called Husband In Law where they talk about their unique situation. Jessica and her new husband Matt remain active in the Mormon church and Jessica says it’s a part of her service to others to show family situations that aren’t typical and shine a light on the fact that it can all work out with lots of communication, acceptance and, Robin, an abundance of love.

ROBERTS: L-o-v-e, love. Becky, thank you so much. Very happy for them.

Erica Carlin

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