I’m not the only one that’s noticed that they’ve been getting a divorce since the very day they got married. And we’re sick of it.
Why is it really so hard to believe that an Aussie tennis legend and a Summer Bay sweetheart could just be perfect for one another?
Since I was old enough to read, I have been one of those customersÂ youÂ hate. The ones who stand in line at the checkout and flick through the latest issue of your magazine, but only actually buy it once every 3.75 years. Because what sort of 10 year old can afford your exorbitant $4.30 on a 52-page catalogue of barely-factual gossip? And what sort of 22 year old actually believes that DuchesssÂ Kate is pregnant again because her nanny’s, best-friend’s, sisters, boss’s assistant said so?
I understand your need to sell magazines but there’s a way to go about it. Buying photos from papparazi and fabricating stories isn’t the right way. I would go as far as saying that it’s unethical journalism.
I am aware that many Australians have never forgiven Lleyton for his early-career, on-court tantrums. And yes, he still does throw the occasional spat. But he wasn’t the first and he won’t be the last bad-tempered tennis player (um, Nick Kyrgios anyone?). Over the last 20 years, Lleyton has really grown up. He has grown from a budding 15 year old tennis player into the youngest ever world number one. He has grown from a teenager, into a husband and father of three.
Lleyton’s known for coining the famous “COME ONNNNNNNNNNN” and let’s be honest, no-one can start a lawnmower better than our Lleyton. He’s an Australian tennis icon. He’s respected and loved on and off the circuit. And he will be remembered as one of the most successful sportspeople Australia has ever produced.
So why do you find it so hard to celebrate his success? Why is it so hard to honour him as a role model? Why is Lleyton always the bad guy for keeping Bec from her old Summer Bay pals (Bec + Kate foreverrrr) and Bec always the one calling in the lawyers? Why are you always searching for flaws in the Hewitt family?
I’m tired of seeing Bec “packing her bags” one minute and having baby number four, the next. I’m tired of seeing photos of Bec on the phone or Lleyton taking the kids out for a walk being misconstrued into something they are not. I’m tired of reading about feuds between friends and custody battles. It’s exhausting.
Have you been living under a rock?
This week, as Lleyton played in his very last Australian Open, you may have noticed his son, Cruz out on the practice court? Or Bec and the kids proudly watching on from the player’s box? You may have noticed the way Lleyton gushed when he heard the song his children recorded, telling him how proud they are of him? Or spoke so highly of his wife (his “rock”) and kids in his post-match interviews? You may have seen the respect he had for the crowd and for his opponents.
Was I the only one who got goosebumps as Mia, Cruz and Ava ran out onto the court after Lleyton’s final match? Was I the only one who let out a little “aww” when they showed Bec watching on from the wings, with tears in her eyes? Was I the only one who stayed glued to my TV as Lleyton walked through the corridors, chatting with his kids on the way to “find Mummy”? Surely not.
You may have got the sense that Lleyton is not only a pretty darn good tennis player, but an all-round good Aussie bloke and a pretty awesome Dad. He’s someone we should be proud of.
Please, New Idea, stop perpetuating Tall Poppy Syndrome. Lleyton Hewitt is someone to be celebrated. As a tennis player. As a husband. As a Dad. Stop cutting him down.
Of course, no-one knows what happens behind closed doors when the cameras stop rolling and the microphones are switched off. But there was just so much love, so much pride and so much happiness that exuded from that family, it’s hard to imagine anything but white picket fences and family sing-a-longs at the Hewitt house. (We got a sneak peak at what thatÂ mightÂ sound like with that adorable song the kids recorded for their Dad… cuuuuuuuuuute!)
But no, you just can’t be happy for the Hewitts, can you? Because happy couples don’t sell magazines? Because happy couples are perfectly happy without million-dollar interviews?
Please, just take a moment — a single moment — to consider what it must feel like to be the Hewitts? What it must be like to walk out your front door and have people taking photos of you from their parked cars? What it must be like to load your groceries at the checkout and see your face plastered over the front cover of a magazine…apparently getting a divorce? Or worse, have your child’s classmates ask them if their parents are breaking up while hanging out in the playground at school?
They’re normal people too. We can only hope they have a sense of humour…
There is nothing wrong with a family wanting to keep out of the spotlight. There is nothing wrong with a family wanting some privacy and normality for their kids. There is nothing wrong with a loving relationshipÂ notÂ spilling onto the front covers of magazines and newspapers.
So, as Lleyton goes into retirement to enjoy his time with Bec, Mia, CruzÂ and Ava, please leave the Hewitts alone.
Image source: Instagram (@bechewitt23)