Mama June Shuts Down 'Hate' for Honey Boo Boo's Relationship With a 20-Year-Old

Mama June Shannon doesn't have a problem with her 16-year-old daughter Alana "Honey Boo Boo" Thompson dating her 20-year-old boyfriend. The Mama June: Road to Redemption star defended her daughter's relationship with a man four years her senior in a new interview with TooFab, saying that people need to stop criticizing their being together.

Shannon revealed she had met Dralin Carswell, who has been dating Thompson since early 2021 and had no problem with their relationship. "People need to realize that she's going to be 17 in August and that [Alana's older sister] Pumpkin and Josh were the same age as they were," she explained, adding, "She is getting a lot of hate because she's in an interracial relationship, he is older, but at the end of the day, Alana's not that 6, 7-year-old child y'all fell in love with 11 years ago. Alana has grown up, she's graduating high school next year, guys!"

Thompson echoed her mother's sentiment in an interview with PEOPLE earlier this year. "I feel like so many people still look at me as that little girl that very first came on TV," the teen said at the time. "Even when the posts about me and my boyfriend coming out, I feel like there was so many people that were still treating me like I was 6 years old."

Criticism for Thompson's relationship started in September when she first revealed she was in a relationship with Carswell on Instagram via a fall-themed photoshoot she quickly took down. The two are still going strong, however, posing together in matching T-shirts on Instagram in a post dated April 16. Thompson captioned the shots, "Park dates with you are the best."


Mama June: Road to Redemption returns on May 13, and in a sneak peek, fans can see Shannon try to regain custody of Thompson from eldest daughter Lauryn "Pumpkin" Shannon. The reality personality teased to TooFab that it would be an "emotional" season. "A lot of real-life issues are going on behind the cameras, so when we come in front of the cameras and talk about it, it is still raw. It's like ripping that Band-Aid off," she continued.