Season 9 of Married at First Sight stars Matt a 32-year-old professional basketball player from Raleigh, NC, and Amber, a 27-year-old eighth grade English teacher currently living in the Charlotte area, as well as Elizabeth, a 30-year-old account executive for her dad's company from South Carolina who was raised in Mooresville, NC, and Jamie, a 35-year-old technical consultant from Columbia, SC.
The season also stars Gregory Okotie, a 32-year-old math learning center owner from Fort Washington, MD, and Deonna McNeill, a 30-year-old operations manager currently living in the Charlotte area, as well as Iris Caldwell, a 27-year-old who works for a nonprofit from Raleigh, NC, and Keith Manley, a 27-year-old high school basketball coach from Greensboro, NC.
The couples had been paired by Married at First Sight experts Pastor Calvin Roberson, Dr. Pepper Schwartz and Dr. Viviana Coles.
Married at First Sight's Episode 8 broadcast began on Day 18 of marriage, with Amber crying about how Matt never came home the previous night.
It was 2PM in the afternoon, and Matt was still nowhere to be found. Amber said Matt never called or texted her to tell her where he was or if he was okay, and on top of that, she found his wedding ring in the drawer of his nightstand.
Amber had to take work off because she was so upset, and she was frustrated with herself because she insisted she's not the type of girl to get so distraught over a man.
"I just want love... I really questioning why he came into this process, because I came into it only for love," Amber cried to the cameras.
Amber hoped Matt would come home and they could work on things, but she felt like their marriage was only comprised of one person and only one person's effort.
Keith then shared his grandmother had passed away and he didn't really know how to feel. Keith was sad, but he was also relieved his grandmother was no longer going to be in pain.
Keith was also thrilled his grandmother got to see him get married -- which was something she had wanted for him -- and meet his wife, Iris, who was very comforting and supportive of her husband during this difficult time.
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Keith said it felt good to have a wife who had his back, and he couldn't believe how vulnerable he was being with her.
Meanwhile, Deonna was feeling sick. She was embarrassed for Greg to see her in that condition considering she had an upset stomach, but Greg was there for her and wanted to take care of her.
Greg was also feeling great because he revealed to the cameras, "Deonna and I had sex. It was on my birthday. It definitely was passionate and it was great."
Elizabeth and Jamie meet with Dr. Pepper
As for Elizabeth and Jamie, there was a lot of tension between them because they had gotten into a big fight the night prior.
Elizabeth accused Jamie of being "a sexoholic" and "basic" in the bedroom, but Jamie gave Elizabeth a hard time about working for her father and not having sex with him enough.
Jamie didn't see a happy outlook for his marriage, but Dr. Pepper came to the rescue and wanted to find out why they were having such "ugly" fights.
Elizabeth admitted she had shut down her emotions about Jamie because he had allegedly threatened her with a divorce already. Dr. Pepper told the couple neither of them had boundaries or discipline in how they spoke to each other.
Dr. Pepper asked Jamie and Elizabeth to take responsibility for what they had said and done to each other, because if they continued this behavior, they'd never end up in a happy relationship.
Dr. Pepper was afraid Jamie and Elizabeth were "toxic" fighters. She said the pair both had a talent for lashing out and having outbursts when in pain.
Elizabeth told Dr. Pepper she was getting a UTI from all the sex she was having with Jamie and so it hurt her to hear him complain they didn't do it enough. And Jamie explained he wanted resolution after their arguments but Elizabeth could never admit when she was wrong.
Dr. Pepper advised Jamie to fight in the moment and not bring things up from the past because it makes a partner feel "hopeless and cornered." Dr. Pepper told him to be constructive and fight fair.
Dr. Pepper also asked Jamie to stay in the apartment and deal with their problems head on when they fight because marriage should be a safety net for them and he should never walk away from his wife.
Amber confronts Matt
Matt was then shown returning to his apartment with Amber, and she admitted she wasn't really happy.
"It's understandable. Let's talk about it," Matt said.
Amber told Matt it was unacceptable he didn't come home and it hurt her feelings he never felt the need to communicate his plans or the fact he wouldn't be coming home.
Amber got the vibe Matt just wanted to be single and have fun as a bachelor.
Matt insisted the plans were "last second" and he should've let her know. But then Amber added how Matt did not wear his ring when he went out, showing that he was not taking their marriage seriously.
"I took it off to work out and just left. I thought I was going to come back even before I went out with the guys. I just ended up hanging out over my buddy's place until we ended up going out," Matt explained.
Amber acknowldged they needed lives outside of each other but Matt needed to communicate with her.
Matt said sleeping on his buddy's couch was a frequent occurrence, but Amber told him that she wanted him to be excited to come home to her -- and his priority was clearly hanging out with his friends.
"I don't care if you stay out until 2 or 3AM, but I wanted you to come home," Amber noted.
"That's something that can be fixed easily," Matt said, adding that he was still learning Amber's expectations and what she wanted from him in their marriage.
"I'm willing to do whatever it takes to make this work... Whatever she wants from me, I will definitely do that for her, because I do care about her."
Matt promised to be more careful about making plans and communicating better with her. Matt said he had to remember that he was responsible for someone else's emotional well-being now, which was definitely a big change for him.
Amber felt relieved and was so glad Matt was expressing himself. Amber saw a new side to him that day, and in turn, she promised to be more patient.
Amber and Matt then hugged, kissed, and made up. They both agreed it was a "good talk."
Amber found herself in a better place with Matt, and she trusted him a lot. Amber even went as far as to say Matt was her "safe place."
Elizabeth and Jamie argue again
After Dr. Pepper left, Elizabeth said she and Jamie went on a walk with her dogs and discussed boundaries. When Elizabeth suggested they take sex off the table for a while, Jamie allegedly got angry and dragged her dogs on the walk home.
Elizabeth said it was unfair of Jamie to take his aggression out on her innocent pets.
Elizabeth told Jamie that she wanted to go home for the night, and Jamie just said, "Okay," but reminded her that Dr. Pepper advised them not to do that.
"No matter how much I try for this guy, it's never enough. No one has ever given me this much anxiety in my whole entire life," Elizabeth said in a confessional.
Elizabeth told Jamie that he questioned her character and tried to bring her down constantly. Elizabeth confessed she lived in fear, wondering when Jamie was going to get mad at her next.
"I can't do this anymore, Jamie," Elizabeth said.
"Maybe be nice to me and don't snap at me. Be kind," Jamie countered. "If you leave then we are done."
Jamie apologized to Elizabeth for mishandling her dogs, saying that wasn't his intention at all and he deserved a little compassion. But then Elizabeth fired back and suggested Jamie had no compassion for her about her UTI and desire to "pause on sex."
Jamie said their marriage wasn't focused on sex, but Elizabeth disagreed. Jamie admitted he felt "pushed away and rejected" knowing Elizabeth was holding back physically.
Jamie insisted sex was one area in their relationship they were actually getting right.
"[We need] to reground ourselves... I just feel like I'm a sex machine at this point. I don't want to have sex right now," Elizabeth said.
Jamie told Elizabeth that was fine and she didn't need to be so defensive, but Elizabeth confessed her nerves were shot and she was close to losing her mind.
Elizabeth didn't leave the apartment, but she told Jamie not to bother her, speak to her, or come anywhere near her.
Elizabeth and Jamie reconcile
On Day 19 of marriage, Jamie woke up on the couch and Elizabeth said she was going home. Both individuals were still tense and upset, and Jamie noted there was no resolve.
Elizabeth explained she needed to collect herself and put herself in a positive environment. She thought it would be best for her marriage to get some space.
Elizabeth told Jamie they were struggling but she wanted their marriage to work and she had hope. The couple's communication suddenly improved, and they agreed they had gotten off track and couldn't even remember why they were fighting to begin with.
Jamie tried to let things go, but boundaries needed to be set. Elizabeth then made Jamie pinky promise they'd never fight like that again.
Dr. Pepper meets with Amber and Matt
Dr. Pepper then visited with Amber and Matt to find out "what the heck" was going on.
Dr. Pepper told Amber that she had every right to be upset and Matt's behavior showed no one has ever held Matt accountable for how he should act in a relationship. Dr. Pepper planned to give him some guidelines, saying he had to think "we" instead of "me."
But Amber was always afraid of rejection and admitted she was putting those feelings on Matt. She Amber acknowledged Matt had never given her a reason to think he'd leave her, and Dr. Pepper advised Amber to be confident in herself and know she's enough.
But Dr. Pepper didn't think Amber was holding Matt accountable enough for his actions. Dr. Pepper said Amber wanted love and affection so badly that she wasn't sticking up for herself and accepted a very simple apology for a very serious relationship.
"Matt is her husband, and he owes her more respect than he is currently giving her," Dr. Pepper told the cameras.
Dr. Pepper told Matt that Amber let him off the hook way more than she would've, but Matt felt he and Amber were in a good place after that event.
"What do you think disappearing one night does to somebody with feelings and fears of abandonment? Could you have done anything worse?! It's on you, and I know you're a better man than that," Dr. Pepper said.
Matt revealed he had left home when he was 16 years old, crashing wherever at friends' homes and then boarding school followed by college.
Dr. Pepper therefore determined Matt's a good guy who just doesn't know how marriage works. She told him never to sleep somewhere else again, and Matt noted that was reasonable.
On Day 22 of marriage, the experts asked each couple to work on some intimacy exercises by playing a few games.
Deonna and Greg grew closer because Deonna was asked to give Greg 10 compliments.
Since Greg said Deonna was often guarded, it meant the world to him. Deonna complimented Greg's kind eyes, the way he smelled fresh out of the shower, his kind gestures, his big heart, and much more.
When Amber and Matt played their game, Amber promised she'd always be fun and Matt promised to always be a positive light in her life. Amber also revealed her fantasy would be giving each other massages before sex.
Matt also revealed his biggest fear about marriage would be growing apart from his wife or becoming "disinterested" in each other, and Amber's biggest fear was their relationship ended in divorce -- with one person rejecting the other.
Elizabeth and Jamie's game took a different turn, as Elizabeth was asked to perform a sexy dance for Jamie.
Elizabeth expressed her biggest fear was Jamie would dump her on "Decision Day," but he planned to reassure her that he wouldn't leave because he loved her and really wanted their marriage to work.
Iris gets uncomfortable talking about sex
Keith and Iris also tackled the fishbowl and dove deeper into their relationship.
Iris was asked to reveal what her favorite sexual position was but it was obviously not applicable since she was a virgin, but Keith revealed his favorite was doggystyle.
Iris seemed to get uncomfortable during the conversation, and Keith said she lacked experience in sexuality and it became very apparent that day.
Iris cringed every time a question about sex came up, and the topic ultimately upset her because she just didn't want to talk about that stuff publicly.
"It makes me feel like I'm a child again. It makes me feel like I'm back in middle school or something. But we're not in middle school and we're grown adults, and these are important conversations we'll have to have if we're going to have a successful marriage," Keith told the cameras.
On Day 24 of marriage, Iris asked Keith what intimacy meant to him while they were out for a dinner. Keith said intimacy can be verbal, emotional or more.
He did admit Iris' lack of sexual maturity was an obstacle for them, because someone who lacks that experience might also lack emotional maturity.
"[Your virginity] is a concern. It's definitely a concern," Keith confessed.
Iris was worried because sex in relationship was clearly important to Keith but she wasn't comfortable enough to give that to him yet. She felt they still needed to build trust.
"My heart is sinking knowing that our marriage may not work based off of me, my virginity, which I cannot change about myself. I don't want this to be, 'I'm giving this to you so you'll stay.' That's not what this is," Iris explained to the cameras.
Greg and Deonna discuss sex
Deonna was then shown telling Greg sex for them would happen organically and she was most attracted to him when he was just relaxed and living in the moment.
But Deonna revealed sex once every other month would be okay as long as they made it "mind-blowing." Greg, however, didn't think he could wait that long in between encounters.
That was something they'd have to figure out together, but Deonna needed Greg to relax a bit and release.
Greg didn't fully understand his wife and how she felt about sex, so he needed to learn more in order to be content with his choice on "Decision Day."
On Day 26 of marriage, with just over a month until "Decision Day," each couple had some significant issues they had to overcome.