Film and TV

Pop Culture Therapists Weigh In On Married At First Sight

Nat Chittamai and Kaitlin Hooper/Lifetime
Bobby and Danielle still haven't fought once.

On Tuesday night's episode of Married At First Sight, we saw the three Dallas couples enter the home stretch and try to really get into the groove of their relationship. Bobby and Danielle still aren't fighting. Mia and Tristan plan to move to Houston. And Amber and Dave simply cannot get on the same page.

We know what we think of the couples: Everybody is boring. But we wanted to know what experts, actual therapists, think of the couples. Kristen Diou and Anna Zapata are licensed professional counselors in Dallas and hosts of the podcast Pop Culture Therapists, which focuses on mental health dynamics in TV shows and movies.

Their insights are both — well, insightful — and hilarious.

On Danielle and Bobby:
"If this was the Rocky Horror Picture Show, Danielle and Bobby would be our Janet and Brad," Diou says. "Their 'sexual purity' and unwillingness to verbalize any discomfort isn't fooling anyone. We see you with that dog poop, Bobby. There's no need to try to be a hero. Resentment builds when no real communication happens in a relationship. It's important to set boundaries early on so that both parties can learn to respect those limits."

"Bobby is the typical partner who becomes a doormat because he can’t assert his limits in the relationship," Zapata says. "He may not feel resentful towards Danielle now, but he will in the future if he keeps picking up dog poop, and she does nothing to contribute. This kind of martyrdom is not good for a relationship long term. It’s unsustainable. But ironically, Bobby and Danielle think their relationship is the healthiest at this juncture because they haven’t had any arguments. That’s really only because Bobby hasn’t asserted himself in any way."

On Tristan and Mia:
"Tristan and Mia seem to be in denial about the huge amount of stress placed on their relationship," Diou says. "A failing business, huge move and, you know, marrying a stranger would typically be too much strain on any relationship. Both Tristan and Mia seem to hide behind humor. Or at least behind that cardboard cutout of Tristan's head."

"Moving for one partner’s job, family, etc. can be incredibly tough on a relationship," Zapata says. "One month of partnership is a stage in which the relationship is still fragile. I’m not sure Tristan and Mia are considering the resentment, anger and loneliness that can come with moving to a different city."

On Amber and Dave:
"While it's clear that Amber may not handle stress well, we see her looking for Dave to offer an acceptance of her," Diou says. "However, Dave seems so emotionally guarded, it's difficult to tell if he even respects Amber. He seems to consistently talk down to her. Amber seems to be working much harder on the relationship and attempting to be vulnerable, and Dave keeps dismissing her."

"Amber and Dave hate each other," Zapata says.