Married At First Sight UK’s resident sexpert Charlene Douglas has promised a “jaw-dropping” new series when the hit reality show returns on Monday, 18 September.

In an exclusive chat with OK!, the 42-year-old hints about the drama set to unfold, promising the upcoming season certainly wouldn’t “disappoint”.

“I’m bursting at the seams, I would love to say so much about this season,” she teases. “The thing I can say is we don’t disappoint and if I had to sum it up in two words – jaw-dropping would be the words that pop to mind.”

Last year’s series was the seventh in the British run, and thanks to betrayals, secret kisses and heartbreak, it became one of the most talked about shows of the year.

Viewers watched a bumper set of 11 couples tie the knot after meeting for the first time at the altar – but it was anything but newlywed bliss for most of them.

Charlene, along with fellow experts Paul C Brunson and Mel Schilling, were there to guide the couples on their usually tumultuous journeys, with Charlene focusing on intimacy and sex.

Speaking about social worker Chanita Stephenson, who won over the nation with her bubbly personality after marrying Jordan Emmett-Connelly in the 2022 series of the E4 show, Charlene reveals her sadness when she saw their relationship crumbling.

“I absolutely love Chanita from last year, her journey was amazing,” Charlene tells us.

“The way she handled herself was so mature, seeing her heart breaking towards the end broke my heart. But she handled it with a lot of grace and dignity, she does her best to be respectful to everyone.”

Viewers had high hopes for Chanita and Jordan, who had instant chemistry when they wed. But a drama-filled Christmas reunion revealed things had unravelled once filming stopped, and Chanita made the brave decision to walk away for good.

“Jordan is an amazing guy and it was important to him to be clear about the fact he didn’t want to continue it, absolutely, but I think a lot of women have experienced behaviours like that from partners or ex-partners where it all feels like it’s going really well and all of a sudden the rug is pulled from underneath you. That was hard to see but she handled herself well.”

As a professional sex therapist, Charlene is tasked with helping the couples navigate the sometimes tricky intimate aspects of their relationship. But it comes easily to her, she says, as for the past 10 years her “whole world has been talking to people about sex and relationships”.

She has various tools in her arsenal, including the staring challenge and the famous box of tricks, which created a storm when she delivered them to the apartment of season seven’s Kwame Badu and Kasia London.

“The Kwame and Kasia scene… viewers were able to get ideas around how to do a more sensual massage and have a bit more fun in the bedroom,” she says.

“A lot of the DMs I got were about that scene. And in particular other couples realising they don’t always have to go down the route of penetrative sex to have a healthy sexual experience together.”

Speaking about her own experiences of learning about healthy sex, Charlene says there was little more to go on than newspaper agony aunt columns and a few teenage magazines when she was growing up.

“You’d read Dear Deidre in the paper, or the naughty thing to do was read More! magazine when you were a bit younger,” she says. “It was geared towards maybe 16 or 17-year-olds but I was 13 or 14 and it felt a bit naughty.

“It taught me a lot because people were writing in about things that had happened to them. It was so fascinating. It was before the internet so there was nowhere to find out that information and you couldn’t have those conversations with your parents.”

Recently, Charlene has partnered with Balance Activ on the Big Vagina Report, exploring the relationships women have with their vaginas. The point of it, she says, is to banish the pet names and resulting shame women feel about their intimate parts, for the benefit of everyone.

It’s often as if women’s body parts “don’t exist” she says, and research into them is distinctly lacking. She adds, “We know that it’s only recently that it came to light that the whole clitoris wasn’t just a little bud that you see but it’s the whole organ, the whole internal part as well and there’s so much more to it.

“Medical doctors have been around for years so why was that never the focus? The only purpose of the clitoris is pleasure for women, so make of that what you will.”

Charlene Douglas has been working with Balance Activ on the Big Vagina Report, the biggest dive into women’s intimate health, which explores the tricky relationships women have with their vaginas

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