Grant Hackett’s 60 Minutes interview has done as much damage to his reputation as he did to his family’s home.  It’s pretty clear that when it comes to realising when to stop, all he does is keep going, keep going until crosses the finishing line.

Now that may have worked in his career, but outside of the pool, grown ups need to learn when to pull up, take a breath and suck in your mistakes.

The guy desperately tried to tone down the damage he inflicted on his wife and two little children, essentially leaving them homeless, but even when the photo evidence is leaked, he still thinks more of winning back the public, than he does about shutting up for the sake of his family.

It’s still half a win for Channel Nine by getting Grant on to Sixty Minutes, so potentially having to let him go if the dust doesn’t settle in his favour, which it doesn’t look like it has, won’t be the end of the world.  It’s like the Willy Wonka of media gig’s this year so I don’t imagine they’ll be searching for a replacement on Seek.

But let me get to what makes me the sickest. The children involved here.  Hackett claims that the kids didn’t see the desecration of their home as his wife “took them one by one to her parents”

Firstly, why would we believe that anyway when in the first place he played down his actions until he was busted by leaked photos of the night? Credibility?  Smashed.

And even if they weren’t physically in the room, is it anywhere near ok for children to be remotely within ear shot of the no doubt horrifying noise of their father, who’s meant to protect them, screaming wildly as he smashes their security and home to pieces?

Doors closed to their room?  Still a hundred miles off being ok.

I still remember vividly my mum and step father fighting all the time, and remember that sick wave of anxiety that would creep up when the atmosphere would start to change in the house, and then mum would close the two doors from the lounge to our rooms.

Did that make me feel any better?  No, in fact, it almost made me feel worse because I wanted to know my mum was ok.  How did I know that another muffled smash of a door was her walking out or her getting hurt?

Life has hit rock bottom if a child is living in a home that feels unsafe at any time.  It doesn’t even have to be as extreme as Grant Hackett.

I can’t even tolerate my friends arguing in front of their kids.  You don’t own your children, despite so many people who feel they do.  They are gifts from god and in your care temporarily. And they are more sensitive than many adults choose to acknowledge.  Or should I say remember.

Whatever went on in Grant and Candice’s relationship to get to the point where Grant destroys their home, and most likely left them emotionally scarred, there is no winning back public opinion right now.  It is what it is.

I am absolutely all for second chances, but like many others, I do not believe just because you have a TV network behind you, that you should come out and tell your version of what happened that night because the only people you should be making it up to is that of your family.  And their extended family that is left heartbroken for the ones they love being put in such a terrifying position.  A family dream, in tatters.

Can you imagine Candice’s parents when they received the phone call that night?  How much pain you’d be in seeing and thinking about those little kids after the ordeal?

Grant Hackett needs to spend his time going to counselling, not the Olympics.  I will be more interested in seeing him post therapy and healed, than commenting on swimming.



  1. Not sure whether I have my facts right, but I watched the interview and I heard Grant say that his wife took the children away and it was AFTER they left him he smashed up the apartment. So no kids, no wife, no access as now he can’t see his kids at all and I bet a mighty grab for his assets. As any clever lawyer will tell you, that is how you get the most money out of a settlement. Keep the kids, don’t give access to family home and cry he or she hurt me.

    Having had MY wife move a boyfriend Elton Flatley from the Wallabies into my bedroom, lock me out of my home, refuse my screaming son to see me and call the police on a made up domestic violence order that was overturned the minute I could actually get to court to have my say . . . I am not sure that what you ay is what is happening here.

    I did not smash up my house and the guy living in my bed while I was in the garage . . . see Sunday mail article from Nov 11, 2007 for a full page account of the story. I was living in MY garage paying $3000 a week mortgage while my wife was living in my bedroom with her lover. Until the court threw them out 4 months later. But I knew that if I did my case would have been lost, because I talked to my lawyer first. Grant obviously reacted to what seems like a common strategy for maximum payout.

    If I am wrong in any of my assertions about his case I apologise.

    • Hi Peter, thanks for your comment! Well, I’m a bit confused but everything I’ve been told, and the way I took it, was that they were originally apparently in the room according to reports, and that he was even holding one in his arms as he was in some sort of the throes of the meltdown, but then my understanding was that they were in another room and were taken one by one to Candice’s parents house. The credibility of the story seems a little lost from the start given his first ‘downplay’ of it was that it wasn’t a big deal and that minimal damage was caused on that night. Until the photos got leaked which have left him looking like a complete bullshit artist. I get so riled about this sort of thing. Get drunk and upset, fair enough. He might have been at his wits end…….but this???????????? This is a complete brain snap out of proportion to anything that might have come from her end verbally or physically. This was designed to intimidate and destroy their lives. And regardless of where the kids or Candice was, if this is the sort of person who will wreck their home, their security, their belongings……then this is a person that should NOT have custody of the kids, and for a substantial time should not have access without supervision. If they were my kids, I’d vomit to think that a person that is capable of this would be in charge of my little angels. But anyway, back onto you………….I did a TV show with Mr Elton Flatley……….I met his then wife who was beautiful inside and out, but it was clear there was no trust there. That is beyond a joke that you were paying that amount while they were shacked up and you’re in the garage………….?????????????? Any wonder people flip out. That sort of legal system is not condusive to a happy outcome or anyone moving on harmoniously. Is everything better now for you? I hope so. Thanks for writing Peter.x

  2. Hi Amber,
    Once again good work my friend sorry to hear about your mum and Step father .Thank u for sharing your story .Hope your mum is doing ok .Hi Amber like we say Dont Worry
    Be Happy
    Thanks Amber have a nice Week.

    • Oh Harry, you’re adorable!!!!!!!!!! My step father never hurt my mum as far as I knew but you don’t know that as a kid do you? All you know is that they’re out of control and they hate each other. I just hate to think there’s other little kids like the one I was sitting there scared and sad because their parents don’t know how to calm down and think of their priority….which is the kid, not who’s flipping right………As I’ve said, if this story embarrasses a few people into thinking twice before screaming or any sort of agro in front of their kids, then at least something good has come of it. But he’s still a dickhead for doing Sixty Minutes……… way too soon for public reflection…..and ever so hollow, thanks Harry.x

  3. I read your column today and tears welled up in my eyes. I have chosen to be childless as I couldn’t stand the idea of raising a child with the same anxieties and low self esteem that I’ve grown up with.
    My parents, they weren’t bad people but they made some mistakes and bad choices that have affected me for my entire life.
    Kids blame themselves and don’t understand what’s wrong but they know something is… even if it is behind closed doors.
    I’ve lost count of the times I’ve seen relationship breakdowns become vindictive battles with kids used as pawns and I’ve watched the pain on kids faces as parents use their bitterness and anger over money, possessions and the kids.
    I will be forever haunted by the words of my stepson sitting on the floor sobbing, when he chose to live with us,that his little sister had told him Mum said you don’t love me anymore.
    Kids deserve to grow up feeling safe and loved and no matter how much you might think you are hiding problems…KIDS KNOW and inside blame themselves.

    • YES Jo, you are so right and touched on something that I didn’t mentioned, kids do blame themselves when people around them aren’t happy. And you sound like a sensitive soul like me, I too have thus far remained childless largely because the relationships I’ve had so far, and the people that I’ve had them with, no offence to them but I haven’t felt that they or WE would be right to be the father of a child at that time with me. I knew there wasn’t enough happiness with any so far that would feel ok to bring a child into the world together. The thing is too that you can try your best to have standards of your own in terms of your behaviour around a child but sometimes it is hard to control the other person. I love my mother and I believe she was amazing and quite ahead of her times in terms of much of her parenting ideals, but when it comes to the relationship she had for 16 years with my step father, it makes no sense to me that she kept that environment in our lives for so long. They were never happy together. I never saw them smile once at each other. He didn’t like even talking to us. He was very unhappy and therefore the atmosphere in our house was often not good. I think I’ve grown up with alot of anger because of this too. I just don’t know why she couldn’t walk away. But I do believe that she thought closing a door was doing the right thing. But we still knew. And we were still uncomfortable and sad. KIDS KNOW alright. Thank you Jo………….xxxxxxxxxxxxx

    • Hello fellow sensitive soul, I did think that I had responded to your comment yesterday but it seems I may not have finished and it’s now disappeared. Anyway, oh how I understand what you’re saying. I think this is why I got so fired up about this one, and yes of course it’s all well and good throwing stones at public figures, although in this case, he’s put himself up for a fair bit of throwing considering 60 minutes….don’t get me started on that again, but yeah, I don’t believe you had to have kids to adore them and feeling very very protective of them. I and you clearly remember being that innocent little person and I remember precisely what scared me and exactly what made me sad. It doesn’t matter whether you were a child of the 1800’2, a child of the 1960’s or a child currently now……the things that will never ever change are their feelings. Their surroundings may, but their feelings NO. In fact if you’re open to spirituality then you may even believe reports that children being born now, known as the Crystal Children are more aware and more pyschic than ever before. And if this is true, then heavens knows what damage will be done to these sensitive souls. And sensitive souls don’t always stay happy. When they get older if they are full of sadness, grief or frustration then it may throw them off course when they become adults. Not good news for anyone hoping for a more peaceful world some day soon. Thank you JO. And believe me I know what it’s like to grow up with low self asteem and alot of anxiety, for many reasons. I’m still working on

  4. Aside from the obvious… the childhood trauma and the plethora of unpleasant memories that they will likely carry to the grave, The bottom line is that children learn from example.
    In the heat of the moment, it may seem to be a good idea to raise voices, to shout and to throw blame and accusation around like rice at a wedding. Having done it myself in the past, I know it is very validating… for a few minutes at least.
    But what does it achieve? I have found myself in relationships with people who believe that it is only way for them to work through their issues, to “purge”.
    But it seems to me that it is not just a waste of time and energy, but it is counterproductive and even harmful.
    not only is the majority of the time and energy in an argument spent on subject matter that seems only vaguely related to the real problem, but the trust in the relationship can be irreversibly damaged with a cruel and cutting remark delivered below the belt in the frenzy of self indulgent self expression thinly veiled beneath the conflict.
    I have heard it said that “effective communication is the other party getting the same message that you intended to give.”
    I still have yet to see that happen in the heat of an argument.
    Effective communication requires the right thing to be said in the right way at the right time. This requires Listening, empathy, thoughtful choice of words and a receptive target.
    If you want to be understood, first seek to understand. If you want to be heard, then listen. Explosive emotional outbursts will not make your partner receptive, they will not want to listen to insults.
    Fixing problems requires finding a solution, throwing blame will not do this.
    Level-headed and thoughtful communication will avoid misunderstandings, violent behavior and hurtful language will not.
    In our, as in most societies, very little can be achieved without communicating with other people. It stands to reason then, that those who have the right tools for effective communication will be more likely to succeed where those who do not, do not.
    If emotion takes the place of empathy and victim mentality takes the place of reason in your home, ask yourself: “What am I teaching my children?
    If these are the tools you are giving them to communicate, why stop there? Why not teach them to do dentistry with a claw-hammer? to change a tire with a stick of dynamite?
    TV not working? A brick will fix that! Fix it gooood…
    We do not own our children, they are their own beings, making decisions about who they are and how the world works based on what they see us doing. We have a responsibility as their guardians and mentors in this world that they are learning to navigate, to guide them and show them what they need to know to thrive. They didn’t ask to be born, you made that choice without their consent or input, so it is your responsibility to make sure that their life, which you brought them into is a good one.
    Give them the right tools.

    • My goodness Kristiaan – you could have written my column better than me…. I know you do something that relates to empowerment and promoting personal development don’t you? Have I got that right? You really really know your stuff. IF ONLY more people had your mind the world would be a MUCH better place. I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts and taking the time to write too. I would love you to add comments to other posts when you have time. I’m very intrigued and impressed by your brain!!!! Thank you….. I look forward to having you on my tv show when it launches.x

  5. I don’t think we have any excuse to fight, especially in front of our kids.
    I see this as a very sad situation and particulary sad because it is even in the media.
    My specific point of concern is that this is none of our business.
    Abet, I really like ou, but this is none of our business at all. This is a domestic situation which is between Grant and his wife and his family.
    I heard you on 102.3 this morning and you were worked up about this and in your artical, but quite honestly this is one of our business.
    It should never be in the public forum and should not have been in the paper in the first place. They will handle this in the manner which they need to do. Our interference is exactly that.
    I guess the best thing about all this is that quite clearly we have no other more important news to report on.
    How do we know that Grant Hackett did not apologize o his family! It certainly is not up to him to do it in a public forum.
    I must point out that I am not supporting him but merely believing that they should sort this unfortunate situation out privately and that our media so called experts should not be lurking around feeding off it.
    Leave it to them!!a,

  6. Hi Amber, your column was spot on as you and I are often on the same wavelength. Here is a poem I wrote in the eyes of a child who witnesses parents anger and fighting. No child needs to be subjected to adults anger.

    Quiet, a child is speaking.

    My eyes so bright with skin so light, I’m trying to say some words today
    My words are kind and you will find a part of me you cannot see
    My mind is new and open to view, if you can hear you’ll hold no fear
    My heart is full of endless love, I feel like an angel from heaven above

    Yet no one sees that I can please, with endless hope it’s how I cope
    Please hear me speak my words to keep, I mean when I say what I say today
    If you would hear and have no fear, like when I see what love should be
    I do not wish for you to ask or fish, just listen and hear the words you fear.

    I am but me a child so free; to say and speak needing love I seek.
    Teach me show me I will try and be, the person you love from heaven above.
    I am but one not two or none, I’m worth the wait it’s never too late.
    Without hitting a piece of flesh on my body, it’s not up to you to hurt me too.

    I cannot take nor can I make, you face your fear as you see my tear.
    I’m not yet wise just purely pint size, but the pain is mine when I cross your line.
    It’s not for me to tell you to stop, it’s yours to own not mine to top.
    Please listen to me and my right to be, a child of yours kept behind closed doors

    Hear me speak so I can sing a tune so sweet and tingling,
    I have no say just love to give all I want is my life to live.
    With you is sad as you call me bad, without you is hard but I release my guard
    I need to be free but guided along, for the road is tough for me to belong.

    I want you care but you don’t dare, It’s not my fault I’m here please have no fear
    I’m not afraid of the world you see, as it is uniquely different from the world of me
    I am special and make many mistakes, but the bigger I make the more I learn
    Love and comfort is all that I yearn, my time and spirit is not something to burn.

    I hear horrible things said in very nice ways, It’s confusing and bruising that fills my days
    You cannot stop me from the love I share, but I’m feeling the ache you have me bare.
    Hear me speak look into my eyes, you’ll see my soul and not any lies.
    It’s pure and clean with its eternal flame, it’s wholesome and real, it’s not a game.

    All I want is you by my side, to hold my hand and beam with pride
    I am a child full of love needing some fun, so open the doors let me out in the sun.
    Be proud of me and hear me say I can be who I am today
    From the mouths of babes its clear and simple, I’m honest and free for you to love me.

    • Emma Jane thank you so much, that is absolutely beautiful and spot on. You’re very kind for taking the time to share that. Lots of love to you.x

  7. Hi Marcus, I do agree that it seemed clear from what we’ve got to see of this story, mostly the 60 minutes episode that there really isn’t a full understanding or recognition from Grant’s side that he truly gets that what he’s done is damaging on so many levels. Like Matt Newton, his Today Tonight ‘i’m ok now’ interview….maybe there were even 2 interviews…anyway the point is it was screamingly obvious that the correct empathy and understanding of what he’d done was still not there. So you’re right, if that’s not there in the person, women totally included, then they will not be really striving for help. They’re not internally begging for help, they’re just begging for public acceptance to be re-instated.. It’s fine to rock up at therapy but it’s how deep you really go as to how deep the healing will really be. I see it everywhere….people reading the book, but not really going too far in. I hope he gets its and fixes his life. I don’t think it’ll be right now, but let’s hope sometime.

    And yes, your point about how men are viewed in society is often completely unfair. men are often under a huge amount of pressure to provide for the family – i’m not too modern to realise that there is not as many women out there as the main providers as there are men and that’s a lot of stress. Men are also not valued or understood enough, not compared to women. That’s one of the things that are on the female’s side. We now talk about our problems very openly and with social media, our network for support is huge. Men however, no where close. It needs to balance out. Men are the ones that need to be understood, not written off. Thanks for your letter

  8. I work in mental health. Grant Hackett needs to keep away from women. The perpetrator doesn’t need counselling, as you alluded to in your article dated 27.06.2012. Men, in my clinical experience only change if they are the initiators for help and they alone identify the problem. Our support should be for the assaulted and not the criminal. I personally don’t understand violence; many women who initiate “Anti Violence Orders”, return to their angry, unchangeable men. Society should assist anyone who needs to move out of such a pattern of poor coping. We also need to think beyond the generic thinking that; “men are violent and women are victims”. Men are already not trusted in society, although few are actually violent and dangerous to others. I believe that most men offer stability to society, albeit differently to what women offer.
    Marcus Micheaux

  9. Wow! Thank you! I continually needed to write on my site something like that. Can I implement a fragment of your post to my site?

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