MAFS Marilyse: ‘It Was Upsetting Watching It Back’

Marilyse tells Grazia about her split with Franky - and reveals the moment she told him "Why did you say that?"

Franky and Marilyse

by Bonnie McLaren |

At the Married At First Sight reunion, it was revealed that three couples had decided to stay together: Dan Jameson and Matt McKee, Tayah Victoria and Adam Aveling and Marilyse Corrigan and Franky Spencer. While the first two couples are still living in happily married bliss {:rel=nofollow}- Marilyse and Franky called time on their relationship last month, splitting up three weeks into the series being on air. 'We came out the experiment in the beginning of June and we broke up end of September,' Marilyse tells Grazia, talking from her home on Zoom.

More so than most of the couples on the show, there was a lot of pressure on the relationship as Franky, 46, moved from Dubai to live with Marilyse, 37, in Yorkshire (Beverely, to be precise, which Franky branded in one episode 'a boring little town'). They weren't living together after the experiment, but the fitness coach says she thinks the relationship would have worked out if they had taken it slower, as they were still seeing each other everyday and texting all the time. 'It just came to a dry ending, where we said we're better off as friends,' she says. 'It's a shame and I do believe that if we came out of the experiment and sat down and said "Right, let's do it where we see each other twice a week and we just date" then it probably would have been a lot different.'

Many viewers on the show saw Franky as a controlling villain, keen to maintain his masculinity at all costs. (He said he had 'big balls' and called himself an 'alpha male'.) But Marilyse says it was an unfair portrayal. 'I was represented fairly,' Marilyse says, '[but with Franky] they focused on all the negative things, and it was upsetting to watch back.' She says he did some 'lovely' things for her, but 'Franky only had about three positive episodes from 21.'

It was a narrative also pushed by the relationship experts on the show, something which exasperated Marilyse. 'My lowest point on the show was probably the stick Franky got from the [relationship] experts,' she says. 'Because every time we had a bad commitment ceremony - which was like three out of three - Franky left feeling really slated and down.' (In one episode, expert Mel Schlling asked Marilyse why she wasn't speaking up for herself: 'When she said that to me, I was like "I don't even know what you're on about".')

She does say, however, that she thinks the experts matched the pair well. But she was also in disbelief when it transpired - later in the series {:rel=nofollow}- that Franky would have 'preferred' if Marilyse didn't have two children (two boys who are 13 and 15). 'I'd had a couple of glasses of Prosecco at the time, so when he said that I was like, "I can't believe you've just said that!' she says. 'I was really shocked.' As she was on the show, Marilyse continues to be diplomatic. 'Then I heard him out,' she says. 'He had his reasons, and he said you've told me about your kids and I don't mind and I can't wait to meet them, then I thought well everyone's got a preference at the end of the day.'

'Sometimes Franky needs to think before he says things,' Marilyse adds, 'and that's his downfall.' The pair might not be together anymore but they are still friends, something which Marilyse says is a positive from the experiment. She doesn't want to date for now (and dismissed some of the recent reports that she might date castmate Luke Dawson) but we doubt she's going to have any trouble finding suitors when she wants to start dating again.

READ MORE: MAFS Morag: ‘Luke Has Let Attention Go To His Head’

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