FYI’s Bride and Prejudice followed the stories of three couples who were madly in love and ready to take the next step in their relationships. After getting engaged, the star-crossed lovers were met with disapproval from their families, adding to the pre-wedding stress. One of those couples, Chris and Lou, had the support of Lou’s family. But Chris’ parents couldn’t wrap their minds around their son marrying a man.
Along with Lou’s family, the couple had the support of Chris’ sister from the very beginning. His mom and brothers came around eventually, but his dad was adamantly against gay marriage. Up until their wedding day, Chris and Lou hoped for Chris’ father’s approval. In a pivotal Bride and Prejudice moment, Chris spotted his dad among the wedding guests as he made his way down the aisle.
Now, following the Bride and Prejudice season finale, Chris and Lou are opening up to The Knot. They’re giving viewers a closer glimpse into their wedding day and what happened before and after.
The gents’ wedding took place at the Palm Springs Air Museum on a hot California day. Due to the stress and exhaustion Lou experienced from planning every detail, his friends pitched in, staying up all night to put the finishing touches on the wedding decor. “I consider my friends family,” Lou tells us. “I needed my family in the moment, and they compassionately stepped up to support us. The venue, decor, and overall vision were executed exactly as illustrated in my heart and mind.”
“Our favorite parts were at the ceremony and reception,” he recalls. “The mix of airplanes, mountains, and sunset as a backdrop for the ceremony was unforgettable. The reception completely overwhelmed us. We loved the intimate lighting and table designs, mother/son dances, hand-crafted desserts, and heartfelt toasting.”
The couple had a specific budget in mind prior to their wedding but when costs began to unexpectedly add up, they used creativity to pull-off the wedding they had envisioned. “In order to budget accordingly, we turned to Amazon.com for little details like linens, cutlery, and napkins. (I think viewers saw me having a meltdown folding them!),” Lou tells The Knot. “I like to say that Amazon.com saved our wedding! We were blessed to have everything we wished for and more. Special thanks to all the vendors who took great care of us too! Looking back, we would probably invest in additional industrial fans to keep things cool,” he says with a laugh.
Chris and Lou had an “explosive” argument the day before their wedding. At one point, Bride and Prejudice viewers were unsure if the nuptials would go on. “Looking back, we were completely overwhelmed and checked out with wedding planning, traveling coast to coast, running our small business, and of course addressing family matters,” Lou explains. “We also skipped out on proper meals, sleep, and gym time which all contributed to our arguments and stresses. We learned to focus on one issue at a time, unplug from phones, and to listen to our bodies. Things have been peaceful since.”
Bride and Prejudice viewers were moved to tears when Chris’ father made his appearance at the wedding. It was the moment the couple had been waiting for since announcing their engagement. “The moment I saw my dad in the front row, it was a true testament of his unconditional love for his kids,” Chris shares with The Knot. “I knew that it was hard for him to be put in the spotlight. Our issues with my sexuality were always private. I think, as a family, we have dealt with this, and seeing him there was the icing on the cake. It is the truest form of acceptance of my lifestyle and marrying Lou.”
That unconditional love and acceptance is allowing Chris and Lou to live a fulfilling life together. We asked what has changed for them since getting married and what the biggest surprise has been. “Feeling completely stable and confident in building a life together,” they explain. “Getting married has improved the quality of our relationship in such a secure way. [The] biggest surprise has to be not feeling judged anymore by the ones we love the most [and] not feeling ashamed or afraid to speak up.”
Although Bride and Prejudice viewers saw a change in Chris’ dad during the couple’s wedding, it remained unclear how things would unfold following Chris and Lou’s special day. “The dynamic of my family has improved. We were forced to talk about things that had been unspoken for years, and the show helped with that,” Chris shares. “My dad is so proud of who I am and the steps I took to make my voice heard. My parents love Lou and have welcomed him into the family with open arms.”
While some may think that watching themselves on TV may have made Chris and Lou cringe at times, they have learned from the experience. “Watching the episodes back was very therapeutic for both of us,” they admit, “even the emotional moments when we are both in tears. It makes you question what reactions people will have. Are people relating to us? We learned it’s an experience many people wouldn’t participate in. It really challenged us and made us a stronger couple. We are proud to have been given a platform to be a voice for the voiceless.”
Along with Chris and Lou, two other couples’ relationships were highlighted on Bride and Prejudice. One couple was met with family resistance over their interracial relationship, and the other dealt with opposition due to have different religious beliefs. “We definitely can relate to the other couples,” Chris and Lou acknowledge. “We found ourselves comparing notes with them. It goes to show that no matter where you are from, these issues really do exist. We applaud their love stories.”
It’s understandable that being filmed throughout the wedding-planning process may impact an already stressful situation. But for Chris and Lou, the cameras may have helped them in a way they never could have expected. “The cameras helped shape the deep conversations,” Chris tells The Knot. “They also pulled everyone out of their comfort zones and forced us to learn from each other. While stressful, it ultimately broke years of silence that needed to be addressed. My Dad told me that the show helped him to be able to open up about feelings that he had never spoke on.”
Chris and Lou are offering some heartfelt advice to ready-to-wed couples who may not yet have the support of their families. “Our advice is to be patient. Things do not happen overnight,” they explain. “Be mindful that everyone processes information differently. People are a product of their environment and may have had different upbringings. They may not understand everything you say or do. Remember to follow your hearts and be each other’s support system. Love always wins.”
After traveling to Sitges, Spain for a much-needed romantic honeymoon, the newlyweds have lots of exciting plans for the future. “Growing MLR Artist Management (our hair and makeup agency), home buying, making beautiful babies, and lots of bubbly!” they tell us. We wish them all the best!