Family Or Fiancé: Relationship Expert Tracy McMillan Talks Season 2 Of Her OWN Show & The ‘Perfect First Date’
OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network’s hit reality series “Family or Fiancé” will return to Saturday nights with all-new episodes starting January 11 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT. Ahead of the premiere BOSSIP chatted with the host/relationship expert Tracy McMillan.
Once again this season she’ll follow engaged couples who bring their disapproving families together for three days under one roof. It’s make it or break it time for the couples who’ll have to face hard truths and complete challenges all while their families intrude.
Tracy told BOSSIP and other journalists that this season she related to a participant in particular whose mother abandoned her. According to Tracy, her own mother didn’t raise her so she used that as a tool to help make a breakthrough between the woman and her estranged mom.
“She had been raised by her grandmother and her mother had given her up,” said Tracy recalling the strained relationship. “She always knew who her mother was but she didn’t know her mother. This was very close to my own story. Watching this woman and her mother try to work out that rupture from 25 years ago where she left her daughter in the care of someone else was extremely moving for me.”
“At first, the mother was in denial, people go into denial about things that are too painful to confront,” she added. “I was able to sort of advocate for the daughter. I shared my own experience and to the three of us—the mother was able to look into her daughter’s eyes and give her the reason. It’s one of the most moving moments on the show.”
Things also got especially interesting when the relationship expert was asked by journalists for her professional opinion on first dates.
According to Tracy, people try too hard on the first date and it can sabotage a future relationship. Instead of doing something formal like a dinner, she suggests a casual 20-minute meetup either at a coffee shop, on a hike or on a walk.
“I’m not gonna suggest that anybody is trying on a first date,” said Tracy. ” On a first date be kind, be a friend. Be a nice person, I don’t want you to have a conversation where you’re like ‘Oh he’s my husband’ or ‘Oh, he’s not!’ “That’s kind of like wanting or judgment and neither of those is going to create a good relationship. I’m gonna show up, I’m gonna be aware, be present, be vulnerable. Let me see if I can be a loving presence in your life for the next 20 minutes.
“I think the first date should be a 20-minute coffee date, or you go on a walk or a hike, or something where you’re moving and doing something,” she added. “It’s much easier to get to know someone without all that pressure of all that eye contact, then you don’t have to dress up, there’s no drinking involved. It just allows you to get to know the person as a person.”
New episodes of “Family or Fiancé” air tonight January 11 at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on OWN—-will YOU be watching???
“Family or Fiancé”, hosted by relationship expert Tracy McMillan, follows engaged couples who bring their disapproving families together for three days under one roof. In this high-stakes social experiment, the couples and extended families participate in activities designed to strengthen their bond, unpack their differences, and show some very complicated relationships in a whole new light. In the end, the families’ concerns might leave the couples to reconsider their unions, or revelations might cause any concerns to fall away. Tracy McMillan returns as the voice of reason to work with the couples on ways to deal with their relationship problems and family issues head on in order to help resolve the conflicts that could undermine their future together. “Family or Fiancé” is executive produced by Gil Goldschein, Jonathan Murray, Julie Pizzi, Erica Ross, Jonathan Singer, and Erika Bryant of Bunim/Murray Productions in partnership with OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network.