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Hello @David V_ Corbin ,
Thank you for reaching out to Atlassian Community.
When you click the "Merge" button in a pull request, a new panel will be displayed with an option to choose which merge strategy you'd like to use :
The currently available option are Merge commit, squad, or Fast forward. Accordingly to your description, the option that would create a new commit with two parents would be Merge commit.
You can also set the default merge strategy in a given repository by going to Repository Settings > Merge Strategies.
Hope that helps! Let me know in case you have any questions.
Thank you, @David V_ Corbin .
to override the merge-commit message Bitbucket creates you can trigger a PR merge via the Bitbucket cloud rest api https://developer.atlassian.com/cloud/bitbucket/rest/api-group-pullrequests/#api-repositories-workspace-repo-slug-pullrequests-pull-request-id-merge-post and define the merge message via the 'message' request parameter.
Hope that helps