'Married at First Sight's Dr. Jessica Griffin thanks Pepper Schwartz for support of Jonathan Francetic relationship, not "turning her back on me" like others
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 04/21/2019
Married at First Sight expert Dr. Jessica Griffin is giving a sincere shout out to Dr. Pepper Schwartz following the recent news she's leaving the reality series and gotten engaged to former Season 6 participant Jonathan Francetic.
"I'm a little late to the party but after our long talk today, my #wcw goes out to this woman @dr_pepper_schwartz -- she has lived an extraordinary life and accomplished so much," Jessica, 41, wrote Thursday on Instagram in honor of "Women Crush Wednesday."
"And, she's been an extraordinary friend not just in the #marriedatfirstsight world but beyond. She's my confidante, my mentor, my friend and one of the funniest women I've ever known."
Jessica faced some backlash and scrutiny when she began dating 30-year-old Jonathan following his stint on Married at First Sight's sixth season, which began filming in late Summer 2017 and aired its finale in April 2018.
Since Jessica served as a marriage counselor or therapist to Jonathan and his then-wife Molly Duff -- whom Jonathan later divorced -- on the show, critics accused Jonathan and the doctor of engaging in an "inappropriate" romance that reflected poorly on Jessica's profession.
Jessica and Jonathan, however, defended their relationship to the ground, and according to Jessica, she had Dr. Pepper's support all along.
"She's had my back even when others have turned their back on me and has been 100 percent supportive of @jon_francetic and I," Jessica continued in her Instagram post.
Jessica claims she did not have a client/therapist or doctor/patient relationship with Jonathan at any point during production and outside companies are hired to conduct the psychological evaluations of Married at First Sight's cast members.
"I am eternally grateful for the opportunity to make such a special connection with this special woman," Jessica concluded.
"I know she won't read this, but maybe her assistant or sweet husband will tell her. I love you, Pepper! Excited about our future adventures together."
Jessica did not mention Married at First Sight's other expert, Pastor Calvin Roberson, although that may not be something to read into.
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Jessica and Jonathan, who began dating last summer and went public with their relationship in August 2018, got engaged last weekend at the Grand Canyon National Park in Arizona.
"I have always said, you can find love in extraordinary ways -- you just have to follow your heart and be you, nobody other than you, and the right person will find you (if he's persistent enough and eventually hunts you down and won't take no for an answer.)" Jessica shared on Instagram, showing off a photo of her diamond ring.
"For the first time in my history of knowing him, Jon was at a loss for words and a total adorable mess on his knee. So, of course, I said yes -- just helping a guy out."
The couple's big moment came shortly after People reported Jessica is leaving her role as a relationship expert on Married at First Sight after appearing on the Lifetime reality series for three seasons.