MAFS' Melissa reveals she dropped out of previous season due to match's STD

EXCLUSIVE: The reality star pulled out 10 days before her wedding.

She had a short-lived marriage to Josh White on this year’s season of Married At First Sight, but it turns out Melissa Sheppard almost had a very different experience on the reality show.

The 41-year-old hairdresser tells Yahoo Lifestyle that she was originally cast on a previous season but pulled out at the last minute after receiving some surprising news about her match.

MAFS' Melissa in the Yahoo studio.
MAFS’ Melissa reveals she was originally cast on a previous season. Photo: Channel Nine

“So when you start doing the auditions for being a part of the series, you go through tests and personality type tests and STD checks and health checks, which is great,” she details.

“Unfortunately, my partner's test results had come back with a few things that weren't right for him, which I felt so terrible for, and they had to make me aware of it.”


Melissa explains that she was told her partner had an “incurable STD” around 10 days before her wedding was scheduled to take place, just as she was about to purchase her dress.

“We were so far at the end that [the producers] were like, ‘No you need to go through with this, you need to just sign this form just in case you contract anything’. They said, ‘You don’t have to sleep with him’ and I said, ‘No, I know that, but what happens if I did?’.”

MAFS' Melissa.
Melissa was told about her partner’s test results around 10 days before her wedding was meant to take place. Photo: Channel Nine

Melissa's big decision

The mother-of-one shares that although she felt bad for her match and knew his sexual health shouldn’t impact their potential romance, she refused to sign any forms and decided to leave the show.

“I think it's the hardest thing when someone comes to you saying, ‘Hey, I've got this STD that's not curable’,” she says. “It’s not something that you can take a tablet and go away, it’s something that he has to manage for the rest of his life.


“It's not like you meet someone out and you have a chance to get to know them and go, ‘Hey, I really like you, I've got a disclaimer, I've got XYZ, I really want to be with you, blah, blah, blah’. That's not the version of the story. The version of the story is you're meeting a stranger to sleep next to and build a relationship with that you know nothing about, but knowing there’s this big cloud over the top of your head.

“I just felt like I knew too much information and I just needed to make a health decision if that was something that I'd be comfortable with going forward, and unfortunately, I just had to pull the pin. It just was something that I wasn't comfortable with, knowing he could be the greatest guy.”

MAFS’ Melissa Sheppard wearing a white floral dress.
'It just was something that I wasn't comfortable with, knowing he could be the greatest guy.' Photo: Channel Nine

How her decision affected her 'edit'

Melissa believes her decision not to be a part of the show is one of the reasons why she received a controversial ‘edit’ as the ‘horny bride’ on this year’s season

“I feel like since pulling out, they stitched me up being this sexual person,” she says, adding that it feels “comical”.

“I really believe MAFS were pissed off at me for not going ahead with it.”

Yahoo Lifestyle has contacted Channel Nine for comment.

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