‘Married at First Sight’ recap: Shaquille dumps Kirsten, Jasmine claims Airris was fake, Mac and Gina consider dating, and Nicole and Chris sign new lease

Reality

Married at First Sight featured Shaquille Dillon rejecting and dumping Kirsten Grimes on “Decision Day,” Jasmine Secrest accusing Airris Williams of putting on a facade in their marriage, Mackinley Gilbert and Gina Micheletti considering a date, and Nicole Lilienthal and Chris Thielk signing a new lease together during the Season 16 episode that aired Wednesday night on Lifetime.

Married at First Sight already featured Nicole and Chris choosing to stay married while two couples opted to get a divorce following the eight-week extreme experiment: Airris and Jasmine Secrest as well as Gina and Clint.

Mackinley Gilbert and his match, Domynique Kloss, decided to get a divorce on Day 12 and were therefore left out of most of the season.

RELATED: ‘MARRIED AT FIRST SIGHT’ COUPLES NOW: WHERE ARE THEY NOW? WHO IS STILL TOGETHER? WHO HAS RE-MARRIED? (PHOTOS)

The Married at First Sight broadcast began where last week’s episode had left off, with Kirsten and Shaquille’s Decision-Day moment. The pair sat down with Married at First Sight experts Pastor Calvin Roberson and Dr. Pepper Schwartz to reveal whether they wanted to stay married or part ways.

Kirsten had already revealed that she wanted to stay married and “would love” to continue working on her relationship with Shaquille — but he apparently felt otherwise.

“It’s been very difficult for me, as a man, to really just try to step up to be the man that you wanted me to be and you needed me to be. But honestly, I’m just not settled with us,” Shaquille explained to his wife.

“My decision would be for us to get a divorce.”

Both Pastor Cal and Dr. Pepper appeared shocked and upset, but Kirsten managed to maintain a sweet, gracious smile.

“Okay,” Kirsten quietly noted.

Shaquille explained how he had been feeling “alone” and there were times when she “wasn’t there” for him.

“It’s like, what more do I have to do as an individual to get you to see that? And it’s been hard. Every day I showed up,” Shaquille said, breaking down into tears.

“I tried to get you to let down your guards, but I don’t think nothing is ever good enough… I don’t know if there’s any more I can do to show you that I’ve been here for you since Day 1. I hope that you can respect my decision.”

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Kirsten said she believed that it takes more than eight weeks for a couple to determine if a marriage should continue. Kirsten felt she had given Shaquille “chance after chance” to show up in their marriage and she had been “very patient.”

“I’ve shown you so much grace, and I hate that you didn’t receive what you feel like you needed in this marriage,” Kirsten responded.

“I really wish that we both could’ve explored a little bit more and [given] each other a little more time together to see if this is something we wanted to do.”

Kirsten wished Shaquille the best and concluded, “I hope everything in your life works out the way you truly want it to work out.”

Pastor Cal admitted this outcome was not what the experts had been hoping for, and Dr. Pepper confessed she was “totally shocked” and “gobsmacked.”

Shaquille told the cameras that he followed his heart, which was simply heavy that day. Shaquille simply wasn’t confident he and Kirsten would last and could be together for a lifetime.

While Kirsten put on a brave face for Decision Day, she vented in a confessional afterwards, “Are you f–king serious right now? I should be the one crying!”

“You’re the one that said ‘no’ and is giving up! Some people aim so high they’ll never receive what they really want out of life or be okay with who they are and where they are in life,” she continued. “So, good luck!”

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On that note, Dr. Pepper vented to Pastor Cal after the meeting, “How much does [Shaquille] need?!”

And Pastor Cal replied, “I’m sorry. I don’t see him getting any better than that.”

The morning after Decision Day, Nicole and Chris — who were the only couple to stay together this season — felt happy and united.

Meanwhile, Jasmine and Airris were moving out of their shared apartment, and Clint and Gina were doing the same.

Jasmine said she felt like she was starting over, but in a good way, and Airris said he was relieved they didn’t have a house or a kid involved.

“I feel like the only thing I need to do differently, if they gave me a do-over, is something I’ve already learned and am doing now. I’m just going to speak up and I’m going to say how I feel in the moment,” Jasmine explained to the cameras.

“I’m going to be sure of my feelings and put them out there in the open… But other than that, I was a damn good wife, so I ain’t got to change much!”

Airris regretted not being more open and vulnerable with Jasmine earlier in the process, but he said it was a mutual decision that they’d be better off just being friends.

Gina told the cameras she had learned a lot from the experiment and came out stronger on the other hand. Gina said she realized she’s resilient and being on the show was a positive life-altering change for her.

Clint planned to remain in Hank’s life, and he was going to babysit Gina’s beloved dog while she traveled out of town in the near future.

“What did I grow? My life for a companion and having a dog in my life. That was something I didn’t anticipate, and it was a welcomed surprise. I’m walking away with gratitude,” Clint explained in a confessional.

Over at Shaquille and Kirsten’s apartment, Kirsten was already gone and moved out, and Shaquille said he was prepared to take things day by day.

Shaquille hoped that Kirsten didn’t have any hard feelings toward him, but footage then flashed to Kirsten flashing two middle fingers into the air as she exited their place with her suitcases.

Shaquille admitted something was just “missing” with Kirsten, and then he was shown leaving his ring on the counter next to Kirsten’s diamond engagement ring and wedding band.

Two days after Decision Day, Clint said there were a couple “candidates” from his past — women he had previously dated — who could probably resurface and make sense in his life after everything he had learned from being married at first sight. Clint said he was equipped with more tools to be a husband and find what he wanted in a partner.

Mackinley was then shown house hunting with the help of Kirsten as his real estate agent. Domynique never thought Mackinley wanted to put down roots in Nashville, but he was proving otherwise.

“My goal was to find me a nice wife and settle down, so onto bigger and better things!” Mackinley said while looking at a nice house with land and a pool.

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After Kirsten was shown preparing herself to dive back into the dating world as a confident and new-and-improved woman, Gina expressed how she felt disappointed but she was so ready for marriage and had a lot to offer a man.

Gina told her friend Haley that she wanted a man who could “read the room” and be a tad bit more reserved than Clint. Gina got annoyed by Clint’s “class clown” behavior, which included a crass sense of humor that sometimes made her feel uncomfortable.

Gina admitted she couldn’t find “an ounce” of physical attraction to Clint during their eight-weeks together because he was so wild. Gina said since she finally knew what she wanted, she was ready to put that into practice.

Three days after Decision Day, Jasmine was moving back into her mother’s house, temporarily, and she said she didn’t have any regrets. Jasmine’s mother, however, was confused because she had grown close to Airris, whom Jasmine claimed was “never all in” to their marriage.

“He never tried,” Jasmine claimed, adding that Airris’ actions around her family was essentially “a facade.”

Jasmine’s mother figured that Airris didn’t really want to be married, but Jasmine pointed out how Airris wasn’t ready to be married and they had no chemistry, spark or romance. Regardless, Jasmine’s mom still had questions and seemed frustrated and disappointed.

“I wasn’t what he wanted,” Jasmine boldly told her mother. “I’m not going to be in a marriage just for the sake of saying, ‘I’m married.’ I’m not about to settle just so that I’m not divorced.”

Airris had asked for visitation rights to see her beloved dog, Duchess, but Jasmine didn’t think Airris was going to ever stop over to see the dog.

Following footage of Shaquille taking a kickboxing class to get back on track in his life with his fitness and personal goals, Nicole and Kirsten went furniture shopping for Kirsten’s place.

Nicole shared how she was living in Chris’ apartment, where they had more space and a bigger bed, and Kirsten told her friend how she felt calm and at peace with Shaquille’s request for a divorce.

Kirsten apparently wanted Shaquille to reach out and check on her, since he had been the one to ask for a divorce, but Nicole admitted Shaquille probably had no idea how to act around her or what to say to her.

Nicole said she didn’t think Kirsten and Shaquille should get back together because it just wasn’t there for them, but she was apparently “grieving” from her friends’ failed relationship.

Meanwhile, one of Airris’ female friends — who had been hoping to double date with Airris and Jasmine — said she had friends who wanted to meet Airris and so it was okay that he was back as a single bachelor. Airris said he was going to date differently, and with purpose, going forward.

“Before, I was looking for a good time, a temporary time. But honestly, I feel like those days are behind me. Going forward… I’m definitely going to be dating with a purpose now,” Airris noted.

“I definitely plan to get back out on the dating scene. I don’t really see the point of sitting around and waiting. I can do tall, short, thick, thin, light, dark. No more than two [years older] or eight [years younger]… Maybe in her late twenties.”

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Shaquille then spent some time with two of his friends, Christian and Tasha, and he acknowledged how being single again felt “different.” Shaquille said he was going to miss going to bed with a woman and waking up next to her every morning.

When asked if he had any regrets about his final decision, Shaquille said he didn’t want to think that way or live in the past. Shaquille explained how he wants to be “overjoyed” in a marriage and “it just wasn’t there” with Kirsten.

“I never thought I would say [I want a divorce] in my life, and it was scary,” Shaquille shared.

Tasha asked Shaquille if he was interested in winning Kirsten back, after taking some time for himself, and Shaquille responded, “I would like us to become friends because you never know what happens.”

“You never know if we just needed some real-life time apart,” he continued, “to really think about what we wanted and needed in the marriage… What if that time does happen, like, ‘Let’s start off as friends. We’re still married. We’re not divorced yet!… Let’s go from there.'”

Christian said it sounded like Shaquille was open to a reconciliation down the road, but Shaquille reasoned how that would only happen if he and Kirsten talked things through.

Later on, Chris and Nicole signed a new lease agreement together. The pair would be able to move into a new apartment in a couple of weeks, and Nicole seemed really excited about that.

Nicole suggested they should open a joint account, but Chris said he could make the rent payment every month and Nicole could just send her half via a phone app or by writing a check.

Nicole said if Chris wasn’t comfortable with sharing an account just yet, she didn’t think it was worth it to push the subject. Nicole figured Chris would eventually get sick of their current arrangement and want to change it.

Nicole finally felt secure in her marriage, especially since Chris had made another legally-binding commitment to her with their new apartment, and so she shared with her husband how she was ready to change her last name to Thielk. Nicole had already gathered all of the paperwork.

“It is an act of choice… and the fact Chris wants me to but isn’t pressuring me to — and keeps saying it’s my choice — makes me want to change it even more. So, it’s exciting!” Nicole gushed in a confessional. “Now, I will officially be Nicole Ashley Thielk.”

Four days after Decision Day, the entire cast got together at an axe-throwing bar — even Mackinley and Domynique.

Mackinley announced how he had been on some dates, and Domynique — who didn’t seem thrilled about Mackinley’s dogs during their marriage — revealed she had a new puppy named Beau in her life to help her combat stress and keep her busy post-divorce.

Since Domynique worked 9AM-5PM on weekdays, partied on the weekends, and wanted to travel, Mackinley said he felt “absolutely sad for that poor dog” who would be stuck in a cage constantly.

“I’m not surprised. It sounds like something Dom would do. It sounds like an immature thing to do,” Mackinley lamented in a confessional.

Airris and Jasmine declared to the group how they were going to remain friends, and Clint joked how he and Gina were about to renew their vows.

Once Clint clarified he and Gina were getting a divorce, Gina insisted there was no animosity between them and they were going to continue living in the same building. Gina was therefore going to give Clint visitation rights with Hank.

Shaquille then announced to the cast how he and Kirsten weren’t soul mates and his heart had led him out of their marriage.

When Jasmine asked if Shaquille and Kirsten were going to totally close the door on their relationship — or if it just wasn’t right for “right now” — Kirsten noted, “It’s a door closed, because when you have a chance at something, you take your chance. And if you miss out, it’s gone.”

Kirsten told Shaquille that she had no plans to call or text him, or even check on him for that matter. Kirsten said when she’s done with something, she doesn’t communicate with that person or look back.

Kirsten, however, said she was going to be alright and looked forward to moving forward and having a husband and kids one day.

“She’s going to find her Prince Charming. She’s going to find her person. It may be me again one day. You never know where God may lead us,” Shaquille teased to the cameras.

The Married at First Sight cast called themselves a “dysfunctional” family, and they planned to stay friends forever.

Once Domynique dipped out of the gathering, Nicole put Mackinley and Gina on the spot.

“I would love to know if you’re both ready to date, if you’re both single. You guys are both attractive people and have the desire to be in a relationship at some point. Would you be willing to go on a date?” Nicole asked the pair aloud.

“I think it would be amazing to see if there was a missed connection.”


Clint told the cameras that he was not prepared for that at all, nor did he “see that coming from a mile away.”

Airris shared how there had been “rumblings” about Mackinley and Gina possibly getting together and so he was expecting something to come up about it — just not “right there, in that moment” and right in front of Clint.

Mackinley said he’d be open to that eventually, and Nicole suggested he and Gina could start off with going for coffee. Nicole wondered if it could be magic in the making.

With that being said, Gina promised to keep everyone updated, and Chris joked, “Married at Second Sight.”

A preview for next week’s episode showed Gina and Mackinley going on a date. Clint also goes on a date outdoors with a beautiful woman.

“When we first all met to go to the airport, I did notice you first,” Gina admits to Mackinley.

Jasmine also meets a new man, and Clint confirms he had sex some time after Decision Day.

The preview concludes with Clint and Domynique meeting up in a park.

RELATED: ‘MARRIED AT FIRST SIGHT’ COUPLES NOW: WHERE ARE THEY NOW? WHO IS STILL TOGETHER? WHO HAS RE-MARRIED? (PHOTOS)

Interested in more Married at First Sight news? Join our Married at First Sight Facebook Group or click here to view our Married at First Sight newspage!

And click here for more updates on former Married at First Sight cast members and info on where they are now!

About The Author:
Elizabeth Kwiatkowski

Elizabeth Kwiatkowski is Associate Editor of Reality TV World and has been covering the reality TV genre for more than a decade.

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