The New York Times has deleted a “poorly-framed” tweet promoting a story about a couple who met when the groom was 27 and the girl 16.
“We've deleted an earlier tweet to this story that was poorly framed,” tweeted the newspaper’s “Vows” section on Thursday, attaching a Saturday story called “On the Second Try, Both Found a Partner in Business and for Life.”
The original tweet read, “Mr. Fazio was already married when he met Abby, but he noticed an instant connection between the two,” and had a quote from John: “We knew we had something special. But she was 16 and too young. I was willing to wait."
In the profile of Abby Mouzakitis-Fazio, 59, and John Fazio, 70, the married couple of 28 years shares how they first met: working at a New York City drugstore that they presently co-own, when Abby was 16 and John was 27 and married.
“I was 16 and very shy, John was 11 years older than me,” Abby told the New York Times. “I liked him. I didn’t think he liked me back.”
They flirted for two years, secretly staring at each other and “flirting” over breakfast or coffee breaks. Sometimes, they would hold hands.
“We would write little notes to each other, he would kiss me on my forehead,” Abby told the New York Times. “A slow love was happening without either of us knowing it. I always wanted to be with him, talk to him, but it wasn’t allowed because he wasn’t Greek and he was married, but not happily.”
Abby and John went on to marry other people, but never left each other’s thoughts. And in 1993, after divorcing their respective spouses, they married each other.
Many people didn’t see the “How we met” story as cute, however, tweeting that the story “glorified” child abuse, workplace harassment and infidelity.
First he grooms his underage coworker, then has an extramarital affair with her, and then he marries her. What are you thinking, @nytimesvows? This is #metoo with party dresses! https://t.co/6dpE8nnaVx
— Your Mom (@MostBoringGirl) July 17, 2019
How can they frame an inappropriate relationship between a 16 yr old girl & a married 27 yr old man as romance?!
— MC (@cardiwithpearls) July 17, 2019
— Jennifer *Close The Camps!* (@jenniferfenn) July 17, 2019
Quickly after posting the original tweet, the paper replaced its blurb promoting the story with a new one that read, “Abby Mouzakitis-Fazio and John Fazio, who have been married 28 years, own the New London Pharmacy in Manhattan. "We’ve learned what makes each other happy, to meet halfway and figure things out together.”
However, because the story was still promoted on Twitter, the backlash didn’t cease. And on Wednesday, the newspaper reminded, “We've deleted an earlier tweet to this story that was poorly framed.”
We've deleted an earlier tweet to this story that was poorly framed https://t.co/SI9r9neivw
— NY Times Weddings (@nytimesvows) July 17, 2019
You mean this tweet, where it's clearer that a married 27-year-old man was horny for a 16-year-old girl, and bided his time? pic.twitter.com/aW8laCiiAv
— NotSchumi (@NotSchumi) July 17, 2019
I’m happy these folks found love, but shame on NYT for glamorizing infidelity, child abuse, and workplace harassment. Unless you are co-signing the idea that 16yo girls are women who seduce?
— Lisa L. Kirchner (@lisalkirchner) July 17, 2019
Good. When I read a story about an old guy sexually preying on a girl, it better be framed well!
— Caffeine G.🔪 (@CaffeineGalaga) July 17, 2019
Yes, that's what is wrong: the story of the 28 year old married man who "saw something special" in his 16 year old employee was POORLY FRAMED.
— Marissa Korbel (@likethchampagne) July 17, 2019
This entire story is poorly framed and reflects poorly on you. As I said in a reply to your previous tweet, the behavior described in these screenshots is GROOMING. You should not be normalizing or romanticizing it, regardless of how the now-adult target feels about her husband. pic.twitter.com/4Tv2qZ4blS
— Adrienne (@Figusss) July 17, 2019
— Francis Scott Keygen (@SoInfiniteLife) July 17, 2019
Romanticizing a predator... good work @nytimes ... not
— ⚠️Sensory Overload⚠️ (@overwhelmeded) July 18, 2019
This is gross. This is disgusting. Dude was married and lusting after a 16 year old child?
Why did you publish this?
— Janine (@j_pineo) July 17, 2019
Yahoo Lifestyle did not immediately hear back on requests for comment from either the New York Times or the couple.
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