One of the most talked-about couples from Married at First – Bryce Ruthven and Mel Rawson – have announced they’re engaged and expecting twins.
Three months after the controversial pair decided to stay together on the show amid wild protest from viewers over the portrayal of their relationship, Bryce and Mel have shared the surprise family news in a cover shoot with New Idea.
In the announcement interview, Bryce admitted the sudden life milestones “all happened very fast”.
“It’s been a whirlwind, but we’re so incredibly happy,” Mel added, explaining that she was alone when she first discovered she was having two babies.
I was alone during the first ultrasound and she just came straight out with it — no warning,” she recalled.
“I couldn’t stop crying, it was very emotional. I think I said ‘holy sh*t’ seven times.”
Bryce, who copped criticism during his time on the show for what viewers saw as “manipulative” behaviour, told the publication the couple were now just looking to the future.
“We’re not doing this for anybody else, it’s about us – we’re cementing our love,” he said.
“Melissa deserves to be happy and I’m apparently very good at that, so I’m looking forward to making it all official.”
“People saw on the show how supportive and loyal Mel was. I’m pleased to say that’s transitioned to the real world,” he said of their relationship.
Bryce and Mel’s pairing was at the centre of a petition forcing Channel 9 to apologise for “creating a distressing viewing experience”, as well as its failure to “showcase that the relationship is clearly not healthy”.
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During the experiment, Bryce was embroiled in controversy after planting an unwanted kiss on fellow contestant Bec Zemek, who was left shaken and in tears.
Along with explosive responses from viewers, his co-stars were similarly damning of his actions, particularly after a commitment ceremony during which he revealed he’d initially voted to leave the experiment and Mel, before crossing it out and writing ‘stay’.
At the time Bryce told Kyle and Jackie O it was merely a “friendly kiss”, suggesting Bec had overreacted and that her tears were “fake”.
However, the couple say they’ve moved past the show and are happier than ever.
“We’d already been married on the show and, with our relationship getting stronger, this just felt like the logical next step,” Mel said.
While MAFS fans shouldn’t expect the show’s experts, Mel Schilling, John Aiken and Alessandra Rampolla, to be invited to the wedding, a handful of familiar grooms will likely be in attendance.
“I’m still close to Jason, he’ll be there,” Bryce told New Idea.
“and Cameron, Russell and James … we’ll see.”
Since Melissa will “have two babies by the time I walk down the aisle,” she said that the wedding will be “low-key”.
The couple made headlines in April after an alleged glassing incident in Melbourne.
Footage of Bryce arguing with a bouncer outside a nightclub went viral, with Bryce later claiming he and Mel had been attacked by a group of strangers.
The alleged altercation resulted in Melissa’s sister and another woman being treated for wounds on their legs after falling through a glass table, Bryce told the Hit Network’s Hughesy, Ed and Erin.
Originally published as Controversial MAFS couple expecting twins