HGTV stars Chip and Joanna Gaines have forgiven the journalist who earlier this year penned a column very critical of the celebrities’ parenting.
In a Clarion Ledger column published in late April, writer Daryl Austin claimed the “Fixer Upper” couple had not prioritized their children above their careers. His op-ed came not long after the Gaines family announced they were expecting their fifth child and would be stepping away from their hit HGTV show.
While Austin claimed to be a fan of the famous designer couple, he didn’t believe their references to family — a major thread in the “Fixer Upper” story — were entirely genuine.
“There is much to be admired about them, including their commitments to their faith, marriage, family and community,” Austin wrote. “There’s an important distinction, however, that I think their millions of fans and would-be imitators need to remember: Chip and Joanna Gaines did not get where they are now by putting their family first.”
He went on to say no one could be as successful as they have been “and still have any real time left over for family.”
Then Chip Gaines chimed in with the perfect response:
I dont know daryl, & he clearly doesnt know me. But for the record: If there is ever a need w/ my family (1st), I'll shut this circus down so fast it will make your head spin. BUT jo & I believe, w/ God anything is possible. Including having an amazing family AND career you love. https://t.co/3DbWIIKMnh
— Chip Gaines (@chipgaines) April 28, 2018
About a month after he penned the scathing column, Austin wrote an apology in a Fox News article, in which he admitted his “regret” for writing the original op-ed. He said his argument against the HGTV duo was “flawed” and based on his personal experience — not theirs.
And according to People, Austin reached out to the Gaines family privately following the recent birth of their fifth child. A representative for the HGTV stars didn’t give many details of the conversation, but said the feud was “water under the bridge” now.
Austin said the opportunity to apologize personally provided closure to the emotionally taxing ordeal.
“I already respected them a lot, despite some concerns I addressed in that article,” Austin reflected, “but now I respect them even more.”