Over the last few seasons of Married at First Sight, we’ve talked with a few of the women who decided to sign up to be matched with a stranger who they would go on to marry and try and start a new life with (sometimes unsuccessfully). Often, the motivation behind this unconventional choice is exhaustion with the dating scene, or a lack of time to really be a part of it in their city. But what motivates a man to take part in MAFS?
Many of us might think that men are not in a rush to marry, or don’t need to be, but that’s not necessarily true. Research has shown that men have their own biological clock to contend with, and overall, there are actually more men in the world than women to choose from. Not to mention, some men are just as weary with dating as women.
Will Guess of Season 8 of Married at First Sight is one of those guys. The 37-year-old Philadelphia native is the last single friend in his circle, and he’s financially, emotionally, and mentally ready to be in the next phase of his life, as marriage is the overall goal for him. Unfortunately, the women he’s encountered while trying to find Mrs. Right have left him in a state of “frustration,” so he was ready to try something different.
We talked with Guess about what led him to the show, what those in his life think about his decision to marry a stranger, and why choosing to do so is anything but desperate.
MadameNoire: What were your dating experiences like in Philly?
Will Guess: My most recent dating experiences in Philly were filled with frustration from the absence of self-awareness, as well as women who lacked effective communication skills to say the least. It’s hard to build anything of substance when you don’t have much to work with.
How did you find out about Married at First Sight and were you a fan of the show before?
My best friend told me about the show during season 2, and from then on, I’d try and catch a couple of episodes per season, but wasn’t a die-hard fan.
What was the one major thing that motivated your decision to try out for the show?
I felt the possibilities of finding a happily ever after was worth the risk. Nothing worth having will ever just appear! It takes effort, commitment, courage and a huge desire to find love. Marrying a stranger may be crazy but it could be just the right move!
Were you nervous about being on TV and having to open up about certain private things? The sex life of the couples is often discussed, and if your parents tune in, I’m sure that can be awkward.
I was very apprehensive about being on TV and sharing any personal things about myself. Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a private person. But the cameras come with this whole wild ride so there’s not much any of us can do about it.
When you got the news that you were matched, how did you prepare for your wedding day? How does one mentally prepare to marry a stranger?
When I got the news I was matched, I was literally speechless! I never, ever thought I’d be selected. I mentally prepared myself by continuing to be as open as possible and keeping in mind that the upcoming unknown is what I signed up for.
Your parents’ relationship is what you reference when it comes to relationships you look up to. What did they think about your decision to do MAFS?
My parents weren’t big fans of me being married at first sight, but they ultimately trust in my decision-making skills and support anything I choose to do. I have a great group and probably would never have gotten this far without them.
What would be your response to people who claim that going to these lengths, specifically marrying someone you’ve never met, is “desperate”?
My response would be that they are very closed-minded, and lack perspective. Arranged marriages are very common around the world — outside of the United States. And the concept of the experiment, where you’re assisted by professionals in various areas to find your “match” is amazing and takes you out of your own way. People forget how often they are literally the ones standing in the way of their own happiness.
Married at First Sight Season 8, set in Philadelphia, will feature four couples for the first time. It will premiere January 1 with a Matchmaking Special at 8 p.m. on Lifetime. The special will be followed by a two-hour premiere at 9 p.m.