Mother-of-two, Mishel Karen knew exactly what she was getting herself in to when she auditioned for Married at First Sight. Drama, backlash and bitchiness, she welcomed it all, in the hope she could meet a man who could heal her broken heart.
But a source close to the the Brisbane-based teacher, 48, says what she didn't expect was to be left with maxed out credit cards and going broke!
According to the 48-year-old, she is now $7,000 out of pocket after she was forced to undergo surgery for her severely injured knee, the result of a fall during her honeymoon in New Zealand with TV husband Steve Burley.
"She's had a hard time getting production to reimburse her the bills despite the fact it happened on set," dishes the spy, referring to Mishel tearing her meniscus during a skiing accident.
"Even months after filming she still hasn't been able to pay back her anaesthetist! It's meant she's not been able to work and is spending her time trying to recover," continues the source adding that Mishel was forced to use all her holiday leave from work on obligatory press commitments and recovery.
"She even had to convince Suncorp to allow her to freeze her mortgage repayments for a month, it's not been easy," says the source. "Her nearest and dearest are concerned for her health, her wellbeing."
It's not the first time a participant has been unable to work due to the experiment, but it's the financial burden of the show that's really broken Mishel.
"She's got her two teenage kids having to help her buy groceries,"the source adds.
"These participants only receive $150 a day to cover all meals, hair, makeup, wardrobe [while on the show]," they add.
What's more, our spy reveals the school teacher was forced to use her own personal credit cards at the hotels she stayed at during filming and had to wait months before she was reimbursed, which saw her go into the red.
"All the food and drink charges were charged back to her personal accounts," they explain.
And while most brides would have hoped their groom would pitch in and help, her business owner groom, Steve, is said to have been more of a burden!
"Oh, he would pinch everything of hers, her groceries and the smokes she'd buy," they insist.
Adding, "During filming she had to hide her cigarettes away from him because she couldn't trust him not to take them!"
TV groom Luke Eglin left the experiment under dark clouds, with his wife Poppy Jennings telling Woman's Day that the real reason the duo exited the show was too controversial to repeat.
But the FIFO worker, 39, hasn't given up on hope on finding love.
In photos exclusively obtained by Woman's Day the father-of-two has been spending time with 27-year-old bride Connie Crayden!
"They really hit it off," dishes our spy.
"They're both from Melbourne, so it was really easy for them to catch up, and obviously their relationships were tumultuous during the show."
Interestingly, it was Luke's relationship breakdown with Poppy that is said to have brought the lovebirds together.
"I think Connie just saw a side to Luke that perhaps [Poppy] didn't and sparks eventually flew," the source adds.