So much went down on the latest episode of 90 Day Fiance: The Other Way.
Gabriel and Isabel finally took their long-hyped, long-dreaded trip to see her parents. He is no stranger to them, but he is nervous.
Before he seeks their approval to marry their daughter, he wants to come out to them as transgender.
The thing is, he already has their approval. They clearly know that he’s good for their daughter. But Gabe’s fear is that all of that will go away due to prejudice.
Early in Season 4, Episode 7, Gabriel Paboga met up with his friend, Trey.
The two met in Colombia and bonded over, at first, nothing more than a shared language: English. In time, they formed an actual friendship.
Interestingly, Trey thinks that Gabe is moving too quickly when it comes to marrying Isabel. Gabriel is impulsive, it’s true, but it’s unclear what Trey thinks will go awry.
We got to watch Gabe make a trial run of coming out — because he came out as trans to Trey.
Despite a lengthy friendship, he never clocked Gabriel. And it didn’t come up, and they weren’t mutuals on social media.
Trey admitted his surprise, but thankfully there was no unfortunate fallout. Anyone who comes out — gay, bi, trans, ace, or otherwise — knows that there is some risk of backlash. Sometimes, over the person’s identity. Other times, over a feeling of entitlement to having known this sooner.
We mentioned that Trey doesn’t seem too keen on Gabe marrying Isabel. It turns out that Isabel doesn’t care for Trey, either.
Gabriel wants his soon-to-be fiancee to get along with his buddy.
The good news is that it doesn’t sound like either of them has wronged the other. But that doesn’t mean that they like each other.
When Trey asked Isabel directly what she dislikes about him, she told him that he is a bad influence. She feels that he is a womanizer. We don’t know if that’s an accurate assessment, or if she’s jumping to conclusions based upon her own toxic exes.
(It doesn’t sound like they’ve discussed this before, but there’s no better time than filming for reality TV … we suppose)
Fortunately, they quickly found some levity.
Gabe and Trey brought up that Trey now knows that he is trans.
The delivery and the timing broke the tension.
However, after Isabel’s friend Mateo arrived, they did have some serious subjects to include.
Isabel loves her family. Her kids love Gabe, and her parents seem to like him … so far.
But when Gabriel comes out to them, she wonders how her father — in particular — will respond.
He is a very religious man. Neither she nor Gabe know whether he holds bigoted views towards the transgender community.
They took their long-awaited (but, perhaps, long-dreaded) trip to see Isabel’s family.
A lot is riding on this visit. Especially since Gabriel hopes to pop the question very soon.
Once there, Isabel’s parents gave them a warm reception.
There were some awkward moments, however.
The first was when Isabel’s parents insisted that Gabe and Isabel — who are grown adults who live together — sleep in separate rooms.
It’s their house and they can make more or less whatever rules they like, but … it’s weird and controlling. Just as it was for Brandon Gibbs’ parents on 90 Day Fiance.
A number of viewers really connected with Gabriel as Isabel’s family prayed before their meal.
Many people have found themselves guests in someone’s home and felt unsure of what to do other than sit silently during a family prayer.
In fact, even Christians or others who pray before eating may find that another family’s habits and patterns for these rituals are unfamiliar or intimidating.
During the dinner itself (that food looked absolutely delicious, by the way), Isabel’s parents did discuss the relationship.
In the past, they disapproved of her relationships. She dated toxic men who did not respect her.
It really sounded like they feel differently about Gabe.
One point in his favor was that Isabel’s kids like him. Miguel and Sara both made that clear.
Sara also added that she sees how happy he makes her mom, which was a great detail to include.
The producers spoke to Isabel’s parents, who told the cameras that, at the moment, it looks like Gabriel is the perfect man for their daughter.
However, when encouraging Gabe to respect Isabel so that they can have a long and happy relationship, things took on a religious tone.
In many cases, that is just fine. Countless people frame their ideas for a good relationship (or more) based upon their faith.
But in Gabriel’s case, a sizable majority of the bigoted comments that he receives online come from Christian conservatives.
And since that is likely to be the case almost anywhere outside of the UK (where transphobes have infiltrated more ostensibly left-leaning circles), he worries if his trans identity will set Isabel’s parents against him.
We all hope not. He’s a great guy, and he and Isabel have a beautiful relationship from what we’ve seen.
It looks like, next week, Gabriel comes out to Isabel’s parents. We wish him the very best.