A Psychologist Unpacks Where Exactly Stacy and Izzy From "Love Is Blind" Went Wrong
Between JP's anti-makeup rant, Uche's condescending God complex, and Izzy's Solo cups, the newest season of "Love Is Blind" made one thing clear: love may be blind, but red flags are always in plain sight.
While Houston-based couple Izzy and Stacy started off strong and became one of the two couples who actually made it past the pods and to the altar, clinical psychologist Lisa Lawless, PhD, CEO of the sexual wellness education platform and shop Holistic Wisdom, says she wasn't surprised to see things deteriorate.
Dr. Lawless tells POPSUGAR that there were three major reasons why Izzy and Stacy's love story couldn't go the distance. Keep reading to learn exactly which stop signs were as red as the Solo cups in Izzy's kitchen cabinet.
Why Izzy and Stacy Broke Up, According to a Psychologist
Izzy and Stacy hit it off right away. After agreeing to a proposal in the pods, the two were off to a couple's retreat in Mexico to explore their physical connection. The first signs that their spark would come to ignite a garbage fire appeared soon after the two returned home from paradise.
Reason #1: Mismatched Expectations For Foundational Values
While Stacy gave Izzy a tour of her house, he made clear that when it comes to paying for shared expenses, he prefers to go Dutch.
"Dinner's not 50/50. The man pays," Stacy said.
"Why? Just throw both cards at it, just split it down the middle," Izzy responded.
At first blush, this may seem like a harmless difference of opinion. But through Dr. Lawless's professional lens, it should never be taken lightly when couples don't see financial decisions eye to eye.
"Managing financial differences in a relationship can be challenging but [is] essential for a healthy partnership. It was clear that this was a significant source of contention for them," she said. "The more Izzy avoided trying to see things from Stacy's point of view, the more she recognized that they had very different expectations," says Dr. Lawless.
Reason #2: A Lack of Accountability
Just as Dr. Lawless predicted, that wasn't the last time a discussion about finances proved to be challenging for the couple. Later in the season, Stacy discovered that Izzy had bad credit, was in debt, and lied about why he doesn't use credit cards — important facts that Izzy had neglected to mention.
"In the pods, talking about finances and debt, I was like, 'Is there anything I need to know?' And you were like, 'Absolutely not.' That wasn't entirely truthful," Stacy said.
Worried she wouldn't be able to trust Izzy moving forward, she pressed the issue.
Izzy: "I would not try to lie to you, so I'm sorry you feel that way. That's not what I was trying to do."
Stacy: "But you lied about it."
Izzy: "What do you mean?"
According to Dr. Lawless, Izzy deflected Stacy's questions instead of taking responsibility for his actions. "This is a problem because, for a healthy relationship to exist, it is essential for partners to fully acknowledge when they have made a mistake to rebuild trust," she says. "He never actually apologized, he never owned that he was embarrassed."
Dr. Lawless says that it's not unusual for people to be less authentic with their partners during the "honeymoon" phase of their relationship; it's human nature to lead with the best parts of yourself. "But this can lead to confusion when our expectations don't match our reality" down the road, she says. Especially if, like Izzy, you don't make an effort to clear up false assumptions or perceptions that were made early on.
Reason #3: Failure to Listen and Understand
"[The couple] would certainly benefit from better communication skills that involve active listening and empathy," says Dr. Lawless.
"Love Is Blind" viewers saw this in action during the debt argument, and then again later when Stacy told Izzy that she felt her needs were not being met. While in the pod, Izzy had promised to cook for Stacy and rub her feet, she reminds him.
In response, Izzy said, "I try to be the best support system as your fiancé, I'm patient, kind, and understanding, all while trying to juggle my own emotions. . . . Sometimes you make me feel like what I do is not good enough all the time."
While both partners shared their feelings (which is good!), neither really made the effort to understand what the other person was asking for and respond to the question at hand.
"They would certainly benefit from better communication skills that involve active listening and empathy."
"Izzy is telling Stacy what he plans to do for her and is not following through with those promises," Dr. Lawless says. When confronted with this fact, Izzy again deflected: he highlighted other things he does well instead of acknowledging the validity of Stacy's specific concern.
"A better approach would have been for him to be honest about what he is comfortable doing in the future and address why he may have felt he needed to promise such things in the first place," says Dr. Lawless.
What Can We Learn From Izzy and Stacy's Relationship From "Love Is Blind"?
In the final "Love Is Blind" episode, which aired Oct. 13, viewers saw the end of Izzy and Stacy's journey. When both arrived at the altar, Izzy chose to say "I do" while Stacy opted out.
Dr. Lawless sees Stacy and Izzy's story as a cautionary tale, especially when communicating. "Using 'I feel' statements rather than blaming or accusing would be helpful [in a partnership]," says Dr. Lawless. For example, if Stacy would have said, "I feel unloved when you don't follow through with things you promised, like rubbing my feet or cooking for me," Izzy may have not felt so defensive.
Another lesson Dr. Lawless notes is the importance of being vulnerable. It's crucial to have the courage to share your deepest vulnerabilities with your partner, including issues related to your finances, says Dr. Lawless. "Only through the courage to have true vulnerability and responsibility can couples cross the bridge into deep intimacy and a path to true healing," she says.
Finally, we can learn a valuable lesson from Stacy's decision to say no at the altar, says Dr. Lawless. "It reminds us that sometimes, it's better to part ways when you and your partner have fundamental differences," says Dr. Lawless. Even if those fundamental differences include the type of plate you eat dinner on and whether or not you have a passport.