'Married at First Sight' recap: Couples swap unlocked phones, Jephte Pierre refuses and leaves wife Shawniece Jackson
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 03/14/2018
Married at First Sight featured the couples working on communication and figuring out privacy boundaries during Tuesday night's sixth-season episode on Lifetime, resulting in Jephte Pierre sleeping away from his wife for a night.
The six strangers who agreed to marry at first sight were Jephte, a 26-year-old second grade teacher; Jaclyn Schwartzberg, a 29-year-old teacher turned sales representative; Ryan Buckley, a 29-year-old firefighter; Molly Duff, a 25-year-old commercial insurance adjuster; Jonathan Francetic, a 28-year-old U.S. Army veteran and former financial associate; and Shawniece Jackson, a 29-year-old entrepreneur and cosmetologist.
Matched by Married at First Sight experts Dr. Jessica Griffin, Dr. Pepper Schwartz, and Pastor Calvin Roberson, Jaclyn married Ryan, Molly walked down the aisle to Jonathan, and Shawniece became a wife to Jephte.
At this point in the extreme experiment, the pairs had reached four-and-a-half weeks into their arranged marriages.
Ryan and Jaclyn had gotten into a big fight the night prior because he had canceled plans with her and stayed out too late with his guy friends.
Ryan complained he was on "a tight leash," and he certainly wasn't used of that, but Jaclyn just wanted to spend more time with her husband and be his main priority.
"This fight was a total breakdown in communication, and if we don't learn how to communicate better, I don't see this relationship working out," Ryan said, adding that Ryan's behavior could be "a dealbreaker" for Jaclyn and they weren't seeing eye to eye.
Meanwhile, Shawniece gushed her marriage was everything she had hoped for. She and Jephte then played "a fishbowl game" in which they had to pick strips of paper at random out of a bowl and ask each other the questions provided.
Jephte had a little trouble communicating with his wife, but the more comfortable he felt with Shawniece, the more he opened up to her.
As for Molly and Jonathan's relationship, Jonathan stopped talking about physical intimacy with Molly completely, because every time he did, they took a step back in their marriage. Jonathan knew his relationship with Molly was going to have its share of tough times, but he really wanted things to work.
"Things aren't perfect but we're trying to work through our differences... [Married at First Sight's first-season couple Jamie Otis and Doug Hehner] weren't attracted in the beginning and they just got to know the person, and by the end, they were head over heels, Molly told the cameras. "So I think it's something that can grow over time."
Shawniece and Jephte were then shown going on a double date with friends, and they seemed to get along with each other fabulously.
On Day 33, Ryan and Jaclyn tried to talk through their issues after the big fight. Ryan argued Jaclyn was putting words in his mouth, and Jaclyn didn't think Ryan really listened to her when she spoke. She felt Ryan was talking "at her" rather than with her.
However, the couple eventually came to a resolution when Jaclyn explained she just wanted Ryan to spend more time with her and be more attentive.
After sharing each other's perspective on the topic, Ryan apologized for hurting his wife, and they both realized they still cared for each other.
Jaclyn, Shawniece and Molly then met with Dr. Jessica Griffin, who asked the ladies to pick a number between 0-10 to represent how happy they were in their marriages. Zero meant they were miserable beyond belief, and 10 signified an absolutely blissful and joyous union.
Molly picked a seven and said she'd ideally want Jonathan to feel less frustrated so she could feel less pressure to have sex. Molly was also hoping the physical attraction would just click, but other than that, she explained her romance was doing "pretty darn good."
Shawniece selected a 7.9, saying her husband needed to trust her more. And Jaclyn picked an 8 because her work schedule and lifestyle conflicted so much with Ryan's jobs and hobbies.
Dr. Jessica then advised the girls not to lose themselves in their relationships, meaning they should take care of their own wants and needs in order to avoid resentment building up in the marriages.
But once Molly got home from the gathering, Jonathan assured her that she didn't need to take better care of herself. He insinuated that Molly always puts herself first in their relationship -- like getting her nails done -- which sparked an argument.
Jonathan said he felt like he was putting every last ounce of effort he had into their marriage, while Molly was a little more disconnected. Molly began questioning whether they were even on the same team.
Footage then switched over to Ryan and Jaclyn, who decided to try something new together. Jaclyn therefore brought Ryan to an art class in which they had to draw a nude male model. Ryan laughed a little and confessed it was an awkward situation, but Jaclyn was really proud of him for trying.
Molly and Jonathan also went on a date in which the Army veteran took his wife to a firearms school, where they could shoot guns at a target.
Molly respected Jonathan's time in the Army, and she found herself happiest with her husband when participating in some activity or adventure with him. Molly also noticed Jonathan's muscles while he was shooting, and she thought he had a sexy back, so she was slowly becoming more attracted to him.
On Day 34 of the marriages, Ryan and Jaclyn cooked their first meal together in their new apartment.
All the couples then learned it was time to complete an exercise regarding trust, communication, transparency and boundaries in a marriage.
The spouses were required to exchange phones -- unlocked -- for one hour.
Jonathan joked with Molly that if she dug into his phone, they'd be "done," but both partners agreed they didn't need to search through each other's phones. Their mutual decision to opt out of the exercise established an even deeper trust between them.
Despite enduring many ups and downs, Molly believed she could rely on her husband, and they were so similar that she figured their relationship was headed in the right direction and could eventually turn into love.
But Jephte refused to let Shawniece look through his "personal business," venting to the cameras about how he had already agreed to give up his "space and freedom" for the marriage.
Shawniece was more than willing to give up her phone to Jephte, saying she had nothing to hide and could see him being her "soul mate." However, Shawniece acknowledged Jephte needed to open up to her more so there would be a possibility for love.
Shawniece was clearly unhappy and frustrated that Jephte wouldn't participate in the exercise, and she suggested "the dark always comes to light." But Jephte wasn't about to sleep in the same bed as his wife when she was mad at him, so he decided to leave their place for the night.
"We're married. Don't say, 'I can't do this,' and then walk out. Everybody's different. I don't expect Jephte to be me. I don't expect him to go into this marriage how I went into it. I just expect us to stay together, and I would never take my stuff and leave. To me, that's never an option," Shawniece explained to cameras.
Ryan and Jaclyn adopted a total opposite approach than the other two couples in that they actually decided to search through each other's phones in order to prove loyalty and maintain trust.
Luckily, the pair didn't stumble across anything disconcerting, and they survived the exercise and seemed very pleased with each other.