Love Island: Joe Criticised Over 'Controlling Behaviour' Towards Lucie By Viewers And Charity Campaigners

He was unhappy at her spending time with Tommy Fury in the villa.

Love Island contestant Joe Garratt is facing further criticism from viewers and charity campaigners over his treatment of girlfriend Lucie Donlan, with accusations of emotional manipulative behaviour being levelled against him.

The catering company owner sparked concern after Sunday night’s episode of the ITV2 reality show saw him tell Lucie he was uncomfortable about her friendship with Tommy Fury.

Despite Lucy’s insistence there is nothing romantic going on between them, Joe remained unhappy at the amount of time they had been spending together, branding it “strange” and “disrespectful”.

Joe said he didn't like that Lucie was spending time with Tommy
Joe said he didn't like that Lucie was spending time with Tommy

He was heard telling her: “The whole thing with Tommy, I’m not happy with it, it is strange. You were with him for a good hour.

“You know I like you so much but I do doubt things at times.

“On the outside world, I’d find it disrespectful, and I don’t want to doubt us.”

He added: “I think you should get closer to the girls.”

Joe later said in the Beach Hut: “I need her to understand where I’m coming from and hopefully adapt to the situation.

“I hope today is the day she wakes up and she will change.”

Many viewers on social media stated their belief his conduct had crossed a line, with some claiming it was gaslighting, which is a form of emotional abuse where a person tries to gain power and control by planting seeds of uncertainty in someone else’s mind.

A number of former Islanders were also left feeling uncomfortable at the episode...

After over 300 complaints were made to Ofcom about the treatment of Lucie on the show, Charity Women’s Aid has since told Love Island fans to look out for warning signs of such behaviour in their own relationships.

Adina Claire, Co-Chief Executive of Women’s Aid, told HuffPost UK: “Controlling behaviour is never acceptable, and with Love Island viewers complaining to Ofcom in record numbers about Joe’s possessive behaviour towards Lucie, more people are becoming aware of this and want to challenge it.

“Abusive relationships often start off with subtle signs of control, so it’s important that it is recognised at an early stage.

“Love Island viewers are now very vocal in calling out unhealthy behaviour between couples on the show, and this is a positive development.”

Joe's behaviour towards Lucie has raised concerns
Joe's behaviour towards Lucie has raised concerns

Relationship support charity Relate’s Head of Service Quality and Clinical Practice, Ammanda Major, added: “Gaslighting is any behaviour which deliberately causes somebody to think they are wrong about something when they aren’t.

“When done consistently, it is a form of emotional abuse and has no place in a loving healthy relationship or in any relationship. It can seriously affect a person’s ability to function in everyday life as they start to doubt their own abilities and behaviours.

“Signs of gaslighting include being told you are ‘too sensitive’, that it’s your job to always apologise because ‘it’s always your fault and everyone else thinks so too’, being told ‘you’re crazy or mad’, being told lies which are then denied – even when you have proof that they were lies and aligning others against you.

“If you’re concerned this is happening within your relationship it’s important to speak to somebody,” she said.

This is not the first time concerns have been raised over how Joe is conducting his relationship with Lucie.

Lucie was visibly emotional during their conversations
Lucie was visibly emotional during their conversations

He raised eyebrows earlier in the series when he told Lucie he didn’t feel like he could trust her after Tommy picked her to go out on a date with, despite the fact she had no control over the situation.

Since Love Island launched in 2015, there have been a number of occasions where concerns have been raised over the male Islanders’ behaviour towards the female contestants.

Last year saw charity Women’s Aid claim Adam Collard displayed “warning signs” that people should look out for when he dumped Rosie Williams.

“In a relationship, a partner questioning your memory of events, trivialising your thoughts or feelings, and turning things around to blame you can be part of pattern of gaslighting and emotional abuse,” Katie Ghose, the chief executive of Women’s Aid, said at the time.

The 2017 series also prompted comments from the charity with CEO Polly Neate singling out Jonny Mitchell for saying another man “would have to prise Tyla from his cold, dead hands”.

In a blog published on HuffPost UK, she wrote: “It did not demonstrate just how much he liked her and it certainly wasn’t funny. It was possessive and controlling.”

Other helplines and support...

  • Refuge- Domestic violence help for women and children - 0808 2000 247
  • Visit Women’s Aid- support for abused women and children – or call the National Domestic Violence Helpline, run by Women’s Aid and Refuge, on 0808 2000 247
  • Broken Rainbow- The LGBT domestic violence charity - 0845 2 60 55 60
  • Men’s Advice Line for advice and support for men experiencing domestic violence and abuse - 0808 801 0327
Yewande Biala

Love Island Contestants 2019


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