Married At First Sight Australia bride Melissa Rawson was left heartbroken and speechless by her television husband after he did not reciprocate her admission of love and went on to reveal he almost chose to leave the experiment.
Bryce Ruthven shocked the show's experts and his fellow contestants when he revealed he had written 'leave' at the commitment ceremony, before crossing it out and changing it to 'stay'.
Perhaps the most heartwrenching moment came earlier, however, when Rawson admitted she was falling in love with Ruthven, only to have him reveal he didn't feel the same.
"I feel I'm a couple of steps ahead of Bryce, I feel I'm getting into the relationship quite quickly, my feelings are growing, and I feel that Bryce is falling a little bit behind," Rawson told the experts.
"Bryce said that he really struggles to build the emotional connection, and that's weighing on me a little bit. I don't want to get to that point where I'm starting to fall in love with him and he's not there."
When asked by the experts whether she was in fact falling in love with Ruthven, she replied "I think am," gazing meaningfully at her partner. Moments before, she admitted that her "greatest fear" was that her feelings "wouldn't be reciprocated at all".
After an awkward pause, Ruthven said that while it was a "good feeling" to hear that his television wife was falling for him, he was not in love with her "just yet".
"No, I'm not," he said.
"So I'm just hoping that something clicks in me going forward."
"It's a little concerning," a visibly upset Rawson eventually responded.
"What happens if it doesn't click? What if I'm just like your other relationships?"
But the heartbreak was far from over when Ruthven revealed his crossed out 'leave', rendering his wife utterly speechless.
After Rawson stammered unsuccessfully through a response, Ruthven attempted to explain his decision by claiming he was attempting to protect his wife from "bullying" within the group.
"Me writing leave was to get her out of a toxic environment, it was basically me looking out for her best interests and for once in my life not being selfish," he said.
"I knew I could potentially hurt her doing it."
A tearful Rawson eventually told her husband: "I wish you'd just written stay. You should have told me, we should have talked about it."
Married At First Sight Australia airs on Three Sundays at 7pm and Monday-Wednesday at 7:30pm, and is also able to be streamed via ThreeNow.