'Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars' recap: Participants learn self-acceptance, reveal what they hate about themselves
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 12/11/2017
Marriage Boot Camp: Reality Stars' featured the Season 9 couples discovering their self-worth by addressing their insecurities head-on during Friday night's episode on WE TV.
This season of Marriage Boot Camp documents the following couples attempting to work through their issues: Bachelor in Paradise stars Juelia and JJ Lane, 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 Mehgan expressing anger and frustration at DeAndre for not supporting her or standing up for her in the previous prison-cell drill.
"At this point, I don't see this Mehgan and DeAndre thing working out," Mehgan admitted to the cameras, as she locked her boyfriend out of their room in the house.
Meanwhile, Asifa realized she needed to let things go in order to move forward with Bobby and have a solid relationship with him. Asifa feared Bobby may pack up and leave again, so she didn't want to press any of his trigger buttons by recalling issues from their past.
When looking at other couples, Asifa felt Mehgan and DeAndre didn't belong together because they just held each other back and only spoke to one another when fighting.
"There's only one thing left DeAndre needs to get rid of, and that's Mehgan," JJ said in a confessional, just as DeAndre was finding a new confidence in himself and even shaved his beard off.
Marriage Boot Camp's next exercise for the participants was all about self-acceptance. Venus and Ish explained that it's essential to love oneself in order to be happy and healthy in a romantic relationship with someone else. The lesson was all about each participant forgiving him or herself for his or her faults, failures and insecurities.
The cast members were therefore asked to write down what they hated about themselves onto wooden paddles. After writing everything down, they were required to smack the paddles against a punching bag to release all of that negative energy and self-hate.
Kailyn admitted she had hated the following about herself: Appearance, defensive, loud, impulsive, too opinionated, pushes people away, selfish, priorities are wrong, and empty.
And Javi called himself protective, worthless, insecure, and short. He also said he didn't like his smile and was afraid that he'd never find someone who will love him.
On JJ's paddle, he wrote that he's stupid, unaccomplished, entitled, and selfish. JJ also referred to himself as a homewrecker and cheater.
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When Juelia's turn was up, she confessed how she can't stand that she's a widow, pitied by other people and scared to let a man in her daughter Ireland's life.
Asifa wrote on her paddle that she's weak in relationships, insecure, and tends to harp on things. And Bobby hated how he runs away during difficult times and doesn't really know who he is.
DeAndre called himself dumb and not focused, adding that he has no money. And Mehgan revealed she lacked confidence and was judgmental.
Amina admitted she's weak for men because she loves too hard and puts others before herself, while Peter wrote on his paddle that he's a selfish cheater and liar.
After the therapy session, Kailyn and Javi argued about how Javi wanted to take her to court for child support, which Kailyn understood to be ridiculous since they have joint 50/50 custody of their son Lincoln. Kailyn called Javi a "bitch boy," saying that he wanted to take a hardworking woman's money just because she happens to make more than him.
Kailyn called Javi greedy and insisted he was just desperate to control the situation. Javi cried to Venus and Ish, saying he appeared on Marriage Boot Camp to hopefully win Kailyn back, but he was struggling to get over the fact she had slept with someone else while he was deployed.
Each participant was then instructed to choose one dealbreaker in relationships and read his or her paddle out loud for the significant others to hear.
Javi shared with Kailyn that he needed her to stop invalidating him, while Kailyn demanded that Javi drop his pride and control.
Mehgan said DeAndre must find his life's purpose by the end of the year, but DeAndre said he needed his girlfriend's respect no matter what.
Juelia's dealbreaker was distance, saying that she and JJ needed to move closer together, and JJ asked Juelia to be more vulnerable with him.
Asifa asked Bobby for honesty and commitment all the time, and Bobby noted that Asifa had to learn how to let things go that bothered her.
Like Asifa, Amina demanded commitment from Bobby, who in turn said that he couldn't give Amina that unless she moves back to New York with him. Amina and Bobby were both waiting for the other person to make the first move in solidifying their romance, so they were at a standstill.