Asuelu Pulaa and Kalani Faagata have wrestled with their marriage on the fifth season of TLC’s 90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After—especially when it comes to their relationships with their respective in-laws.
After having to cancel their trip to Asuelu’s home country of Samoa due to a measles outbreak, the two parents traveled from Utah to Washington on recent episodes in order to spend time with Asuelu’s mother, Lesina, and two half-sisters, Tammy and Rosa.
Asuelu’s mom immediately asked the couple for $1,000 in cash after they met up in Washington. When Asuelu offered his relatives only $100, saying he needed to stick to a budget in order to take care of his wife and kids, they stormed out in a rage.
On a new 90 Day Fiancé: Happily Ever After episode, Asuelu visited his mom and sisters on his own to try to make amends. But Tammy told her brother that she thought Kalani was trying to “control” him now that he was in the U.S.
Asuelu asked his family not to base their relationship on finances
Despite the awkward way their dinner the night before ended, Asuelu’s mother and sisters welcomed him to their shared home with open arms the next day. Lesina, Tammy, and Rosa were thrilled with the gifts Asuelu brought along from a local Samoan store in Utah.
But things quickly turned sour when Asuelu admitted that he had purposely asked his wife not to accompany him so that he could speak to them about the sensitive issue of money. The 90 Day Fiancé star explained that he wanted to follow American customs now that he lived in the U.S. Meanwhile, his mom, Lesina, told producers that she wanted her son to keep to his Samoan traditions instead.
Kalani’s previous accusations that Asuelu felt he had to “buy” his family’s love with money seemed to ring true for him. The young father of two told his relatives that he wanted them to love him regardless of his ability to afford financial support.
“The only thing I want—I don’t want my wife to see us, we only close if I give you money,” Asuelu said nervously. Kalani’s family, he pointed out, was “still close and loved each other” even when they didn’t exchange money.
The ’90 Day Fiancé’ star’s sister implied that Kalani controlled Asuelu due to their age difference
Tammy was immediately annoyed by Asuelu’s line of questioning. She rolled her eyes and said sarcastically, “‘Kalani’s family, Kalani’s family, Kalani’s family.’ What about your family?”
Lesina agreed, adding, “We are not asking [for] your wife Kalani’s money. Your money.”
Asuelu’s sister cut her mom off to insinuate that Asuelu did whatever Kalani said, so it wasn’t worth wasting her breath.
“Mom, it’s nothing gonna change here,” Tammy argued. “If Kalani tell Asuelu, ‘do this, do that,’ Asuelu will listen.”
Tammy added that she believed Kalani felt she could “control” her husband because of their eight-year age difference. (Kalani was 32 at the time, while Asuelu was 24).
“Older woman control young man,” Tammy asserted.
“He’s too young,” Lesina agreed. “He doesn’t know what to do.”
But Asuelu insisted that he was acting on his own free will. The 90 Day Fiancé star defended Kalani from their accusations, saying, “[To] be honest, it’s not control of me.”
Tammy explained that her family was disappointed in Asuelu’s refusal to help them out financially
Asuelu’s sister went on to accuse Kalani of thinking only about her own immediate family. But in their culture, one’s extended family and family of origin were meant to come first.
“So that’s why, when you trying to send money to Samoa, Kalani is thinking about her and the kids,” Tammy snapped.
But Kalani’s husband defended his wife, explaining that he had to put his wife and children first now. The 90 Day Fiancé star also argued that he had to take Kalani’s opinions into consideration now when it came to financial decisions.
“I’m not single anymore,” Asuelu pointed out. “My money, it’s Kalani’s money. Kalani’s money is my money.”
Tammy criticized her brother to 90 Day Fiancé producers, arguing that Asuelu’s actions were unlike him. The culprit, she suggested, was Kalani.
“First, I was worried Asuelu was marrying American girl,” Tammy admitted. “And then we thought, ‘Oh, maybe she will be able to send money to Samoa to help out our family.’ But now, I feel like she control Asuelu.”
Eventually, annoyed by his family’s questions, Asuelu left the house alone, saying he was going to “go back to his wife” instead. The 90 Day Fiancé star confessed sadly that he felt he was being asked to choose between his wife and his mother and sisters.
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