This is it for This is Us. The NBC drama’s sixth and final season premiered on Jan. 4, and the reality of the show ending has left many of its fans heartbroken. There were many reasons to love the series, among them being Beth (played by Susan Kelechi Watson) and Randall (Sterling K. Brown). The fictional couple quickly became our favorites because who doesn’t swoon at Black love?
Even though this good thing is coming to an end, the show is leaving us with permanent feels, and indelible lessons about love and life. Here are five lessons we can take from Beth and Randall’s endless love after six enchanting seasons.
Black Love Can Be Healthy
What’s moving about how Beth and Randall love one another is that we’re seeing a blueprint for healthy Black love. What makes their love so healthy? The way they communicate is respectful. Their emotional intelligence is top tier, too. They process their feelings, own their mess, and show empathy when needed. Because Beth and Randall see themselves, they’re also able to see one another. They don’t give us perfect love, but they exude healthy love, which is healing to watch for the Black community.
You Don’t Have to Be Your Partner’s Savior
It’s not uncommon to want to save your partner, especially when you see them suffering. However, it can be a form of self-sacrifice that hurts you and your relationship more than it helps. We have watched many uncomfortable and touching scenes where Randall’s anxiety almost consumed him. Instead of Beth becoming his anxiety to help minimize his suffering, she supported him but encouraged him to get professional help. These scenes were perfect reminders that our healing and mental health is our responsibility and loved ones can only offer support.
Love and Freedom Can Co-Exist
There is often a polarity between freedom and love when that doesn’t have to be the case. Beth and Randall show us both can co-exist; we can maintain our individual identities and love one another. We’re sometimes told that if we don’t sacrifice who we are for love, relationships won’t last. This couple shows us that when you prioritize self-love instead of always self-sacrificing, relationships can thrive!
A primary example of this is when Beth and Randall were at a crossroads about their careers. Beth wanted to support Randall’s political ambitions but she also wanted to pursue her dreams of professional dancing. What would have torn many couples apart brought these two closer together. Everybody won in the end even though it was ugly before it was beautiful.
Healthy Lovers Make Better Parents
When two parents are in love and the kids can see that love, it can create a loving home. We admire how Beth and Randall model what they want to see –love especially. The same patience, kindness, and understanding they give to one another they give to their kids as well. Whether Tess was coming out or Deja wanted to date a teen dad, the love and support they showed was consistent.
The couple also isn’t afraid to show PDA in front of their kids or awkwardly flirt. They wear their hearts on their sleeves and this helps set the tone for their loving home.
We Can Ride and Live — No Need to Die
Randall has often been erratic and Beth understands her man, so she’s mostly down when he shares a new game plan. For instance, when Randall wanted to reconnect with his biological father, she had his back. When he wanted to learn more about his birth mother and visit her hometown, she was his wingwoman. Likewise, when Beth wanted to change careers and become a dance teacher, he was down for the ride.
Watching them support one another in things that could help facilitate their individual growth and healing was beautiful. It was also a reminder that you can ride for your partner in things that support their growth as a person. We don’t have to ride into drama and die in it.
I don’t know about you, but we’re going to miss this TV couple. Nonetheless, we have endless gratitude for the renewed belief in love we’ve gotten because of them. Enter them — please and thank you — into the pantheon of Black partners in love and life who left an indelible mark on us.