Stephen & Michael “remain friends” despite sudden MAFS 2024 exit

Are they truly just friends?
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It was a devastating start to the Married At First Sight Australia for 2024 groom Michael, but the relationship experts has found him a new match in Stephen – but can he overcome his fear of being a ‘fill in’?

After Michael’s original match unexpectedly pulled out of the experiment, the relationship experts were in a scramble trying to find a new match.

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Michael has made it down the aisle on MAFS 2024.
(Image: Nine)

“I need a man, I’m ready to have a family,” Michael confessed to his fellow participants during the Hen’s night.

“I don’t have a specific type looks wise, I do like a nice, deep masculine voice, someone whose confident in themselves, someone whose going to be a good leader and someone that’s mature or older.”

Fast forward to the Intruder weddings with Michael’s new match Stephen, a 26-year-old hairdresser from Perth, Western Australia who has many similar expectations in a partner.

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Michael and Stephen have been paired on Married At First Sight Australia 2024.
(Image: Nine)

Hailing from a big family, like Michael, Stephen is eager to start a family and find love in a serious, monogamous relationship which he claims is difficult to find in Perth.

From the moment they laid eyes on each other, the attraction was clear and continued throughout the night as they bantered and flirted. However, a comment made by one of Michael’s friends has Stephen rattled.

“You’ve met the baby mamas,” one of the guests said.

Stunned and confused by the comment, Stephen went directly to the source for answers.

“So, what’s this about a baby mama?” he asked.

“I was going to get to that,” Michael nervously laughed. “I have two biological daughters, one each with Natalie and Nicole. It honestly feels good to be able to give the gift of life to them and help them grow their family.”

Stephen became overjoyed by his new ‘husbands’ selflessness, and the night was smooth sailing from there. Until Michael confessed Stephen was not his original match, making him feel like a last minute replacement.

While they went through the normal ups and downs of any stranger-to-marriage relationship, it all came tumbling down when Michael caught his husband “flirting” with someone else.

“Today was meant to be a fun day. We had a publicity shoot, and Stephen was getting his hair done and I could see my husband flirting with the hairdresser,” Michael was retelling the camera crew.

“On the ride home, I could see him sitting back texting, smiling and I was like ‘oh who are you talking to?’ and he was talking to the hairdresser.”

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Michael has ditched the ring!
(Image: Nine)

For Stephen, feeling that “instant attraction to someone” was a “lightbulb moment” of what was missing in his relationship and what was the reality of their relationship – a “friendship.”

Michael took off his ring, and left it on the table. However, the pair still went to Retreat Week with their fellow MAFS stars.

But what was done, couldn’t be undone. During the following commitment ceremony, they both wrote leave and exited the experiment.

In an interview with 9Entertainment, Michael revealed they “remain friends.”

“We’re on good terms. I would definitely say he’s a friend,” he said. “I would be happy to see him out, I would be happy to make plans with him if I’m ever in Perth and vice versa for him to come to Melbourne.”

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