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90 Day Fiancé Season 9 premieres on Sunday, Apr. 17. The upcoming season brings fans six new couples and one returning duo to TLC as they embark on their journey of finding international love. Here’s how Bilal and Shaaeda met.

'90 Day Fiancé' Season 9 couple Bilal and Shaeeda pose together in Kansas City, Missouri.
Bilal and Shaeeda pose together in Kansas City, Missouri for 90 Day Fiancé Season 9 | TLC

‘90 Day Fiancé’ Season 9 star Bilal felt his life began to turn around after meeting Shaeeda

Bilal was previously married and has children from that relationship. In a new clip for the upcoming season, the 42-year-old explains how difficult his divorce was.

“When we went through our divorce seven years ago, it was a very rough time. No matter how much you love somebody and how much you want things to work, nothing can prevent a person from like waking up one morning and saying, ‘You know, like, I’m not in love with you anymore,” Bilal tells producers.

Bilal said he felt like a failure after his marriage ended. However, once he met Shaeeda, his life began to turn around.

‘90 Day Fiancé’ Season 9 star Bilal avoided talking to Shaeeda because of her name

Shaeeda, who hails from Trinidad and Tobago, works as a yoga instructor and is 37 years old. The couple had mutual friends on social media, and Bilal says Shaeeda slid into his DMs first. However, the father of two held back from interacting with Shaeeda for one reason – her name.

“I thought she was very beautiful, but her name… I was like, ‘It is way too close to my ex-wife’s name, Shaida.’ Shaida and Shaeeda, their names are so similar that I actually avoided talking to Shaida because of her name, initially. But finally, you know, I couldn’t resist,” Bilal laughs in a confessional.

In the 90 Day Fiancé Season 9 teaser trailer, Bilal goes on to say how much he loves Shaeeda’s drive. She owns her own yoga business, where she works as a yoga instructor. “She has a will to want more in life,” Bilal tells producers.


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The couple got engaged seven days after meeting in person for the first time

Among the new couples in the spotlight in season 9, Bilal and Shaeeda may have the quickest engagement. After chatting through social media and over the phone, Bilal decided to fly to meet Shaeeda in person.

“We were talking and things were vibing well, and then I was like ‘I have to see you in person’ and that’s when I made plans to visit her. Seeing her was really great. She’s very shy when she doesn’t know you, almost an uncomfortable shyness. The beauty of her is as she starts to be around you much more, she starts to open up,” Bilal says.

Bilal continues, “ I spent seven days in Trinidad. So, we actually only spent seven days together physically before we decided, ‘Ok, this is official.’”

According to Bilal, he always had a potential engagement at the end of his trip in mind, and once he spent time with Shaeeda, he proposed. However, after he returned to the States, the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic shut down travel for much of the globe. 

Now, two years later, Bilal and Shaeeda will finally be able to reunite in person. Tune in to 90 Day Fiancé Season 9 when it premieres on Sunday, Apr. 17, at 8:00 p.m. EST on TLC. The show also streams the same day on discovery+.