Married at First Sight's Sophie reveals how Jonathan's body comments impacted her
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Featured Image Credit: Instagram/@sophiehlbrown/Channel 4
Married at First Sight UK’s Sophie Brown has opened up about how the ‘horse legs’ comment impacted her after the show.
The 26-year-old tech worker was partnered with Jonathan Wileman, and the pair soon hit it off.
They entered the experiment a little later than the original couples, and Sophie quickly became a fan favourite amongst viewers and contestants alike.
But tensions started to grow after Jonathan made a number of comments relating to body image, warning Sophie not to go too hard at the gym as he doesn’t like women with ‘big, muscly horse legs’.
As other couples and the experts questioned his comments, the 32-year-old carpenter only seemed to dig himself into a deeper hole.
At one moment he said he only meant the comment in jest and that others shouldn’t be so sensitive, while refusing to see it from any other perspective than his own.
He also said he prefers women to be a certain size, even telling Sophie that he wouldn’t find her attractive if she put weight on.
Alongside the experts, Jonathan was slammed online, with one saying that he presented ‘so many red flags’.
“Johnathan on MAFS obviously doesn’t have the emotional intelligence to be with a Queen like Sophie,” said another.
Tyla was lucky enough to speak to Sophie about her experience on the show, and she bravely opened up about the effect the comments had on her while also sharing an inspiring message to those who might be struggling with self-esteem issues and social media trolling.
The star emphasised that her MAFS experience was an overall positive one, and there are certainly no hard feelings between her and Jonathan.
But when it came to watching the show months after filming, she said the situation ‘did impact me quite a lot’.
“Watching it back, especially when we weren’t together at the time, you do watch it with a bit of a different perspective,” she explained.
While the reaction online has been mostly positive, Sophie said it’s been difficult as the show focused so much on this aspect of her relationship with Jonathan that it led to trolling on social media.
“With the whole weight thing, and I hate using this term, but the ‘horse legs’ comment, it was just a bit hard for me because then it started a discussion online about me and my weight and the way that I look,” she said.
“People would say things like, ‘Well, she is a bit chubby,’ and that’s a bit difficult.
"I’m like, ‘Oh my gosh, I’m size 10, I’m a really normal size,' so that must be hard for other women seeing those comments too.”
Jonathan also sparked outrage among viewers after saying to the husbands during the retreat that he didn’t want to rip Sophie’s clothes off, something she was blindsided by when watching the show back.
“I hadn't seen what was said at the boys’ day, that was the first time watching it,” she said. “It was a bit of a shock.”
While Channel 4 producers did what they could to protect contestants from what was being said online, Sophie explained that ‘no one can prepare you for how you're going to feel when you see it’.
But she said she’s much better now at ignoring the trolls and not dwelling on the negative, adding: “On my social media I want it to be a really positive place and I want everyone’s differences to be celebrated.”
The tech employee, who went straight back to work after the show, especially likes to boost other women’s confidence in the workplace, saying her best DMs come from young women wanting to get into tech and asking questions about their future careers.
When asked what advice Sophie would give to anyone else who might be suffering from body image issues, she explained: “The thing with social media these days is that it really is a perfect version of someone’s life - it’s all the best bits.
“I do it too, I scroll and I see these girls who look perfect, but they’re just normal people doing normal things.
“So I’d say be hyper aware of the people you’re following and the people you surround yourself with, because ultimately if you’re looking at people on screen all the time, that’s what you’re going to think is perfection.
“And perfection is not what someone looks like. It comes from the inside, it’s how loyal and lovely they are, and how they treat other people.”