One of the more memorable storylines on Married at First Sight Season 12 has been Clara Fergus and Ryan Oubre’s relationship. Noted for their strong start, Clara and Ryan began to stumble over their different views on religion and sex.
The latter was a particular source of frustration throughout the season, leading up to the Married at First Sight Season 12 Reunion episode. However, that final episode marked a turning point in their relationship, one which bodes well for the future.
Clara and Ryan’s intimacy issues
Clara and Ryan’s sex life made waves with avid season 12 viewers. Clara repeatedly voiced the sexual frustration she experienced as Ryan insisted on building an emotional bond firsthand.
Clara, who had indicated that, for her, sex was more about physical connection than emotional intimacy, had a difficult time with this. Compounding her difficulties, their physical intimacy both stopped short of intercourse and only resulted in his satisfaction.
Many viewers weighed in on both sides. Some supported Clara in her need for physical intimacy and denounced Ryan as selfish. Others sympathized with Ryan’s efforts to build an emotional foundation of trust and love first.
Whether you agreed with one or the other: one thing was clear: neither Clara nor Ryan had difficulties sharing their thoughts on sex with viewers. Clara’s honesty throughout the season was particularly refreshing.
Ryan did have difficulty saying, “I love you,” which became another source of contention throughout the season. Now, the setup of the show itself does not lend itself to immediate declarations of love.
But for some, saying those words comes more quickly and easily than for others. As with sex, Clara had hoped that Ryan could have been more forthcoming in that regard.
Have things changed for Clara and Ryan?
One of the biggest questions that viewers had about the couple as of the Reunion show was whether they had yet consummated their marriage.
Both Clara and Ryan were a bit cagey when pressed by Kevin, with Clara repeatedly indicating she didn’t know and Ryan offering vague descriptions of prior evenings.
While fans may not know how quickly the two became intimate after Decision Day, toward the end of the season, Clara had shared she was adjusting to her discomfort with their lack of intimacy. She noted that if she had to wait a few months to enjoy an enduring marriage, then it would be worth it.
Of course, just as crucial to such an enduring marriage as a fulfilling sex life is emotional intimacy. Kevin asked Ryan whether he’d yet said those three magic words to Clara. Initially, Ryan responded:
“I wouldn’t say — there’s not necessarily a holdup. I don’t have a checklist or like these certain things had to happen. The way I’ve always approached this experiment is, you feel what you feel, and you take it day by day and step by step, for sure.”
However, when asked directly by Kevin whether he loved Clara, Ryan did finally say he loved her. A promising sign, to be sure, for one of season 12’s more popular couples, and hopefully a sign of that enduring marriage of which Clara spoke.
Recapping their relationship on the Reunion show
As often happens on reality shows, by the time the Reunion show aired, things had changed a bit. As per TV Insider, Reunion show host Kevin recapped their relationship, highlighting some of its rockier moments.
In particular, Kevin shared with the audience the cringe-worthy clips of Clara venting to the other female participants about how sexually frustrated she was.
While Ryan had complained that Clara seemed only to have sex on the brain, Clara shared with the other ladies (and the viewing audience) that she was “getting Ryan off every night.” However, he didn’t reciprocate.
Further disclosures indicated the two enjoyed practically every aspect of physical intimacy besides intercourse, which is quite a thing to admit on national television.
Given their sexual compatibility issues, it was anyone’s guess whether the two would stay together after Decision Day. But unlike other Married at First Sight couples, Haley and Jacob as well as Paige and Chris, Clara and Ryan decided to stick it out and remain married.