HERE COME THE BRIDES — Introduced by Magda Szubanski
“We had six children and two families that were catastrophically blown off the planet by Christine and I doing what we needed to do, and that was to be together.” – Virginia Flitcroft
“It’s been a long and sometimes very difficult journey but Virginia and I, with our marriage, are going to put the tough times behind us.” – Christine Forster
It’s the wedding former Prime Minister Tony Abbott lobbied against - the marriage of his youngest sister Christine Forster to her partner of ten years, Virginia Flitcroft.
In a television exclusive, Australian Story joins the guests at the high profile gay wedding – including a mix of Liberal politicians, well known drag queens, as well as Tony Abbott and his mother Fay, both of whom voted against the same-sex marriage plebiscite last year.
But behind the champagne, frocks and flowers is a quest for understanding and a story of a family divided.
Christine and Virginia talk frankly about how news of their relationship impacted on their families, and about some of their regrets.
“I made mistake after mistake after mistake,” says Christine. “I now realise I’d been falling in love with women all through my life, but had never been able to act on it.”
The couple discuss the emotional fallout of spearheading the ‘yes’ case for same sex marriage, and the impact of brother Tony Abbott’s lobbying for the ‘no’ case.
“Tony and I had a discussion and I said, I fully understand that you needed to make your case, and make it clearly, but it’s not ok to use your sibling as a political football,” says wife-to-be Virginia Flitcroft.
“I accept that people do disagree. It doesn’t mean they don’t like each other. It doesn’t mean they can’t love each other,” says Tony Abbott.
Australian Story speaks to Christine’s friends and family to document her journey from a Catholic, middle-class, married mother of four, to high profile same-sex marriage activist and Liberal politician. Ultimately, it’s a love story not to be missed.
Executive Producer: Caitlin Shea
Producers: Amanda Collinge and Belinda Hawkins