'Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars' recap: Javi Marroquin nearly quits, couples test ability to communicate
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 11/13/2017
Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars' latest ninth-season episode taught the participants a hard lesson in communication on Friday night.
This season of Marriage Boot Camp documents the following couples attempting to work through their issues: Bachelor in Paradise stars JJ Lane and Juelia Kinney, Teen Mom 2 star Kailyn Lowry and estranged husband Javi Marroquin, Bad Girls Club star Mehgan James and boyfriend DeAndre Perry, Shahs of Sunset stars Asifa Mirza and Bobby Panahi, and Love & Hip Hop: New York stars Amina Buddafly and Peter Gunz.
All of the couples try to overcome their scandals, dark secrets, and emotional or physical cheating under the guidance and with the help of therapists Dr. Venus Nicolino and Dr. Ish Major.
The episode began with Kailyn and Javi fighting in their bedroom on the morning of Day 4 over child support. Kailyn gets angry when Javi says he'd take half the money she has worked hard for in their divorce simply because he can, not because he needs it.
"I think you are a b-tch boy," Kailyn told her soon-to-be ex-husband.
"I am done with this sh-t. I'm leaving," Javi told her.
Javi packed up his suitcases and attempted to leave Marriage Boot Camp all together, but Kailyn thought he was just being "dramatic" per usual.
Peter ran after Javi, asking him to stick around and not give up, but Javi was exhausted over the fact he couldn't even have a normal conversation with the mother of his child without fighting. Javi initially hoped they'd get back together, but he was starting to see that was no longer an option.
Peter pointed out to Javi that he should stay in the house just to learn how to co-parent better. He also joked about how guys like DeAndre needed him. It took some heavy convincing, but Javi finally made his way back into the house and agreed he'd keep trying to make Venus and Ish happy.
Javi was tired of Kailyn's attitude, but Peter thought Javi was stubborn.
Meanwhile, Juelia was having trouble realizing her self worth, especially after reading the letter JJ had written about her appearance. Juelia felt the letter was hanging over her head, as she was reminded of JJ's hurtful words every time she came close to moving on.
Amina then accused Peter of calling his other love, Tara, in secret. While Amina wasn't happy about it, Peter argued that it's disrespectful to call one woman when in the presence of the other.
It then became time for the group to participate in a therapy exercise. Each couple was required to standup paddleboard together, with one person in the front navigating and the person in the back paddling.
There was a catch, however, in that the person with the paddle would be blindfolded, relying solely on his or her partner's communication for rowing and steering instructions.
Venus and Ish announced that the pair to most successfully complete the course would receive a romantic sunset dinner by themselves. To make things more interesting, the couple to run the course least successfully would have to serve the winning pair at dinner.
Venus and Ish instructed JJ, Asifa, Amina, DeAndre and Kailyn to be the navigators, while Juelia, Javi, Bobby, Peter and Mehgan had to paddle.
Mehgan and DeAndre bickered a lot and even fell overboard at one point. Amina and Peter were both close to quitting the race at different points, and Javi fell off the board as his paddle floated far away from him.
However, Javi was able to retrieve the paddle in the water solely by listening to Kailyn's commands. Kailyn knew that she and Javi worked great together in physical challenges, but there were many different aspects of their relationship that was missing.
Peter took his blindfold off about halfway through the race, and Venus noted he's "a cheater in the game and a cheater in real life."
In the end, JJ and Juelia finished the course in first place, while Javi and Kailyn placed last. However, the doctors explained the exercise was about the best communication, not necessarily about the couple who could finish the course in the fastest time.
With that being said, Venus and Ish declared Javi and Kailyn the winners, much to Juelia and JJ's dismay. The doctors also determined Bobby and Asifa had the worst communication of the group.
While enjoying their sunset dinner, Javi admitted that he often brings his personal issues with Kailyn into their co-parenting.
Meanwhile, Peter acknowledged it wasn't fair to Amina to still have feelings for another woman. He began to question whether he should even continue to be with her.
The second exercise of the episode required each couple to act out how another pair -- selected at random -- fights and argues.
Bobby noted that JJ and Juelia's relationship was going to be the hardest to act out.
Mehgan and DeAndre selected Javi and Kailyn, and they made it known that the parents allow others to affect their marriage in a negative way, whether it be through rumors or interference. Javi and Kailyn were told they need to be on the same team for their son Lincoln and attack the issue at hand, not the other person.
The couples learned to "listen, understand and validate," as well as "stay in the game" and "one play," meaning they must deal with one issue at time during an argument and not bring up problems from the past.
The "one play" rule especially applied to Asifa, who constantly brings up the allegation that Bobby gave his phone number out to a woman at his gym.
The final lesson the group learned was to "spike the ball" at the end of a dispute, meaning they should celebrate solving an issue.
During the exercise, Kailyn showed how passive Juelia tends to be when things go awry and Bobby poked fun at how Peter loves two women and can't seem to decide between them.
Juelia then played Mehgan and grilled JJ -- who was pretending to be DeAndre -- about needing to make more money.
Mehgan was personally offended because she insisted to the group it wasn't about money, that it was about DeAndre wanting more out of life and his career for his own benefit. Venus and Ish felt there was no warmth between Mehgan and DeAndre at all, even during good times.
Once Divorce Court judge Lynn Toler checked in with the group at the end of the day, only one person received a punishment, and that person was Asifa. Before the night ended, Asifa was forced to write down 100 times "I will not mention the girl at the gym again."
Asifa didn't complete her assignment before bed, which really angered her partner, so the episode concluded with Bobby taking a blanket and going to sleep by himself downstairs.