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Cait Fairbanks Opens up About Tessa and Mariah’s Relationship on Y&R


Tessa and Mariah are deliriously happy on THE YOUNG & THE RESTLESS as they plan their wedding and arrange to adopt a child… which means that it’s inevitable that the other shoe will eventually drop and there will be some major drama. It is a soap, after all! Cait Fairbanks, who plays Tessa, admitted that it’s been a refreshing change of pace to see the same-sex couple accepted by their friends and family in Genoa City.

“It’s been lovely that people have been so accepting, especially Mariah’s mom,” the actress told Soap Opera Digest. “There’s never been a question with Sharon of whether or not that part of her daughter’s relationship is okay, which is nice. Of course, if it wasn’t, then it would be a matter of, ‘It’s none of your business,’ but it’s never come to that.”

Still, Fairbanks allowed that the environment that Y&R has presented for Mariah and Tessa’s relationship over the past years hasn’t necessarily reflected reality. “When I travel to another part of the country and listen to some of the things that people say around me, I have to remind myself, ‘Oh, wow, I’m not in California anymore,” she admitted. “It’s just a mindset that, of course, I wish was different, but there’s a reality there that to do this thoughtfully and eloquently can be really hard for the writers. I don’t envy them, but they always do a wonderful job.

Y&R Mariah Tessa
How long can Mariah and Tessa’s happiness really last?Howard Wise/

“I’ve always wanted to push the envelope a little bit more about the reality of their relationship,” Fairbanks added. “But I would love that kind of world Genoa City is to exist so that kids and teens or anyone watching would go, ‘Oh my God, you can have a life where people are accepting.’ I would love that message but I also don’t think it’s realistic, unfortunately.”

Happiness never lasts long on soaps, so while Tessa and Mariah’s wedding may go off without a hitch, “Teriah” fans should probably brace themselves for the same-sex couple to potentially run into some trouble with their plans to adopt. “I’m looking forward to where this story goes,” Fairbanks confided.

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