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Jephte and Shawniece

Source: Lifetime / lifetime

In the latest episode of Married at First Sight: Happily Ever After, which is the last one before the finale, we are told that after a year of being married and recently welcoming daughter Laura Denise into the world, Jephte and Shawniece are still struggling with the L-word.

During a sit-down with the other women and Dr. Jessica, Shawniece said that while Jephte has no problem telling the baby and their dog, Kiki, that he loves them, he hasn’t been able to say the same to her.

“Now that we have the baby, I have to watch him look at the baby and Kiki and go, ‘I just love you two so much,'” she said. “It just makes me feel like, Ok, I’m here, I’m your wife, I’m cooking and cleaning, I’m doing all this, and you never once tell me you love me. I literally cry cause I’m like, you never once told me that willingly.”

And while Jephte tells the guys and Pastor Cal that he’s “the happiest I’ve ever been,” during a solo sit-down with the expert, he confessed that he’s worried that those feelings won’t grow.

“I love her, but I don’t feel like I’m in love with her, which is difficult because when she sees me and how I love the baby, it’s instant. I know it has to be hard for her to watch,” he said. “I see the fact and I value and respect the fact that she’s a good person, but when it comes to my heart being completely in it, it’s more of a commitment than it is for me a feeling.”

Despite saying that he feels like it’s the commitment (as well as the immense fear of being a single father…), not romantic love for Shawniece that’s keeping him around, Pastor Cal tries to encourage Jephte to look at things differently. Instead of focusing on the negative and what he may not feel now, staying focused on his passion for his family will help his feelings grow stronger for his wife. He basically told him to try talking himself into loving her, because in most marriages, it isn’t lovey-dovey all of the time.

“You guys have an incredible marriage,” Pastor Cal told him, “and the thing that’s going to make it or break it Jephte, is you.”

After taking some time to consider the expert’s advice, Jephte seemed ready to give his all to make his marriage last. At least, that’s what he shared in a meeting with the other couples and all of the experts.

“I think one thing I maybe need to work on is getting that feeling towards her. Sometimes it still feels like it’s just two people who are just married instead of a marriage where we are united. I think with time and more shared experiences, that will hopefully happen. As long as the positive outweighs the negative,” he said. “I mean, when we had our time apart, if I were to ask myself seriously, did I try everything to make our marriage work? No, I didn’t try everything. So right now, this is me really trying everything to make sure we succeed and hopefully that’s how it turns out.”

Only time will tell.

But if you ask Twitter, things don’t look good. People took to the social media platform after the episode to vent their frustration not only with Jephte, but also with Pastor Cal, surprisingly. However, there were some folks applauding Jephte’s vulnerability and honesty. Check out where people stand on Jephte and Shawniece’s relationship, and Pastor Cal’s advice, by hitting the flip.

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