Married at First Sight alum Iris Caldwell says she’s proud of Meka Jones for bringing Michael Watson’s alleged off-screen sex ultimatum up, adding she should have done similarly and spoken up more during her own Season 9 marriage to Keith Manley.
On Married at First Sight’s currently-airing tenth season, Meka alleged Michael had attempted to put a time limit on consummating their marriage while flying to their honeymoon in Panama.
“I’m pissed because on the plane, we had a conversation and Michael literally gave me an ultimatum and said if we don’t have sex on our honeymoon then he won’t want to be in this marriage,” Meka told the cameras.
Meka later confronted Michael and accused him of being a different person — one who’s not patient or authentic — when camera’s weren’t rolling. The tense conversation resulted in the spouses sleeping in different hotel rooms during the first night of their honeymoon.
“I’m very proud of Meka for calling attention to the issue,” Iris said during a series of Instagram Stories videos she posted during a Q&A session with her followers on January 23.
“Because I know that I should have said a lot of things, but I just didn’t,” Iris added, referring to her Married at First Sight marriage to Keith.
“And so you had to put it out on the table for it to be solved. And I think that’s something I didn’t realize. So, I’m proud of her, kudos to that. You see something? Say something.”
Michael didn’t confirm or deny what he had said to Meka on the plane when she later confronted him about it on-camera in the couple’s honeymoon hotel room in Panama.
However, Iris suggested she believes Michael probably did make the ultimatum and noted MAFS participants have said different things on-camera and off-camera before.
“Alright, I’m about to really drop. This may take a couple of slides to get through, but what Meka was saying about Michael, I don’t know Michael personally or not, but I believe that that has happened,” Iris said in a video.
“It happened with [Amber Bowles] and [Matt Gwynne].”
Amber and Matt starred on Season 9 of Married at First Sight along with Iris and Keith.
Amber and Matt had a tumultuous relationship throughout the show as Amber put all of her heart and effort into making the marriage work while Matt would often disappear for hours on end and simply seemed disinterested in both his wife and the process.
Towards the end of Season 9, Matt was accused of cheating on Amber during their short-lived marriage that ended in divorce.
“Matt would say certain stuff off-camera and then come on-camera and be a whole different person,” Iris claimed in a video. “Yes it happens.”
“And I know someone who did that too,” Iris added, suggesting Keith had similarly acted differently off-camera than on-camera during their brief marriage.
“But whatever!” Iris noted. “It happens y’all. It’s real. I don’t know if that’s true, true with them — but.”
Meka was especially upset on Married at First Sight because Michael had promised her family and friends he was in no rush to have sex and had no expectations. He said he was going to allow Meka to take the lead on their intimacy.
“The part that is the most concerning for me is that when we get on-camera, he’s a totally different person — he’s patient and he wants to wait for sex and it’s all on me and whenever I’m ready,” Meka said on the show.
Meka therefore told Michael that she wasn’t sure she had received the honest and authentic relationship she was hoping for.
“My worry is that we were matched based on what you portrayed yourself as and not what you actually were,” Meka told Michael.
“It’s running through my mind that maybe if he had talked to the experts the way he talks to me off-camera, maybe we never would have even been matched.”
Michael, however, argued he was just trying to gauge Meka’s expectations of intimacy while laying his out there in a direct manner in order to avoid future confusion or problems.
Michael apologized for putting Meka in an uncomfortable situation, saying it was not his intent to put pressure on her and he was just trying to learn how to be a good husband and communicate his own expectations.
As for Iris’ marriage on Married at First Sight, Keith decided on “Decision Day” he wanted a divorce against his wife’s wishes and desires.
Keith choosing to split from Iris shocked many Married at First Sight viewers because they seemed to have a very healthy relationship during the show.
The pair rarely fought during their short-lived marriage, and Keith and Iris supported each other during tough times — including the death of Keith’s beloved grandmother.
Keith told the cameras he wanted to end his marriage to Iris, who was a virgin on the show, because of her alleged lack of emotional maturity stemming from her lack of sexual and relationship experience.
Iris, however, argued late last year she’s not immature at all. She seemed to think during filming that Keith simply had an issue with the fact she was a virgin and viewed it as a burden rather than a gift.
The topic of reconciliation came up during the MAFS reunion special for Keith and Iris.
Iris said at the time she’d be willing to give Keith another chance if he’d be up for marriage counseling, but he expressed there was probably no hope of them getting back together.
Keith confessed he really wasn’t ready for a wife, and he believed at the time Iris wasn’t ready to be a wife either.
Married at First Sight’s tenth season currently airs on Wednesday nights at 8PM ET/PT on Lifetime.