'90 Day Fiancé': Stephanie Matto Says Being Sexually Assaulted Hurts Her Ability to Be Intimate

TLC’s 90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days, is one of reality television’s most controversial and entertaining shows. A spinoff of the original 90 Day Fiancé, the series has been making headlines a lot in recent months, due to the involvement of one cast member, in particular.

Stephanie Matto, a social media influencer, made history as the show’s first bisexual woman to be featured on the franchise. But she is considered to be problematic by many fans. Recently, she opened up about her bizarre experience with stalking, her experience with sexual assault, and how it has affected her ability to be intimate with a partner.

What is ’90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days’ about?

90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days is a second addition to the franchise, and debuted on television in late 2016. The series follows couples who have met and formed a relationship online but have not yet had the chance to meet face to face.

When the show picks up, the American half of the couple travels to their partner’s home country, where the two lovebirds meet for the first time. Then, the couple must decide whether they want to continue their relationship or break things off.

The couples featured on the show usually encounter a series of challenges, from unsupportive relatives to deep, dark secrets that are impossible to ignore. In the years since 90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days premiered on TLC, viewers have had the chance to meet many unique characters, men and women who are often their own worst enemy. 

Who is Stephanie Matto?

In the world of 90 Day Fiancé: Before the 90 Days, no one has been more controversial or more buzzworthy than Matto. The social media influencer was introduced to viewers in the spring of 2020 when the fourth season of the series premiered.

At the time, Matto was involved in a long-distance relationship with Erika Owens, who was based in Australia. Matto and Owens had a volatile relationship.

On the show, Matto often seemed to be visibly uncomfortable getting intimate with Owens, which led to some friction between the two. This issue was addressed on the show, with Matto claiming that her trouble with intimacy stemmed from “constant emotional and physical fatigue from medication.”

Fans took to social media to defend Matto at the time, praising her ability to be open with viewers.

Stephanie Matto opened up about being stalked and intimacy issues

In recent months, Matto has been dishing even more about her issues, including how sexual assault played into her intimacy problems. On a recent episode of the Strictly Stalking podcast, Matto revealed that she has even had to deal with stalking and that it all plays into her attitude toward relationships, claiming: “I’ve been sexually assaulted in my life so it’s like hearing that, like these text messages, it kind of triggers me. I’ve had very scary experiences in my life and this is reminding me a lot of that.”

“Many, many years ago before I was ever diagnosed with my illness I had briefly worked as a dancer in LA,” Matto described. “And I had one evening where I was sexually assaulted by somebody and it’s something that’s stayed with me. I do not move quickly when it comes to intimacy. People that try to be intimate with me, very early on, will see my knee-jerk reactions. I need to feel completely comfortable and not pressured at all. And unfortunately — when you’re on a show that’s like, ‘Are you guys in love? Are you guys f*king?’ — it’s like you feel like you’re under pressure a lot even though that’s not your partner’s intention at all.”

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