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Malia Details Her "Pretty Bad Breakup" with Tom and If They're Still in Touch

Below Deck Med's Malia White reflects on starting Season 6 after her split from Tom Checketts and gives an update on her current dating life.

Tom Checketts Malia White Breakup

Season 6 of Below Deck Mediterranean may be Malia White's third charter season as part of Captain Sandy Yawn's crew, but it has still been a different experience for the yachtie in a lot of ways. Now in her second season as bosun, Malia has come into her own in this leadership role and has even encountered relatively little drama with her deck crew so far this time around.

It's no wonder Malia called Season 6 "definitely the most fun I’ve ever had filming" during a recent exclusive interview with Bravo Insider.

Of course, perhaps the most noticeable difference for Malia in Season 6 is that she is now single after announcing last fall that she and Tom Checketts had broken up. Malia and Tom both cited the long distance due to working on different boats as a contributing factor in their decision to split.

Malia's relationship with Tom not only affected her personal life last season but also professionally as they began to work together when he filled in as chef following Hindrigo "Kiko" Lorran's departure. Having her significant other on board presented new challenges for Malia as we saw her manage what was going on in the galley on top of continuing to lead the deck team.

"Last season, I had Tom on board. I had a relationship I was worried about. And I think you saw I was just super stressed out last season, and, you know, constantly worrying about other people, like Tom," Malia recalled to Bravo Insider. "Like this season, it was refreshing just to come in and focus on just the job, like being bosun and [working] on my leadership skills and building a team rather than worrying about, you know, my partner on the boat."

Getting into a boatmance was also the furthest thing from Malia's mind coming into Season 6. "Well, I think you see, like, I talk to Tom on the phone at the beginning of the season. Our relationship had — it was still pretty fresh, like the breakup and everything," Malia recalled. "So I was not really open to relationships or romance or anything. You know, I’d just [gotten] out of a pretty bad breakup, so [I was] pretty closed off." 

Hoping to change Malia's mind was deckhand David Pascoe, who has expressed his fondness for the bosun this season. "I think it came out more in the interviews than it really did around me," Malia said of David's crush on her. "Like, you know, when he was drunk he would flirt, whatever. But on deck and stuff, he wasn’t really ever, you know, making a move. So I think watching it back and hearing how he felt, like, in interviews and stuff was definitely interesting [laughs]. He’s so sweet and we got along really well, but again, I just wasn’t looking for anything."

David did make a bit of a move earlier this season, asking Malia in the hot tub during the crew's night off if she would ever see him "as someone more than you worked with." But some major drama broke out before Malia could answer. 

So, David tried again during the crew's next night off, telling Malia, "I'm fully into you… Honestly, I genuinely love everything about you." Malia turned David down, explaining, "This past year, I've had a very f--ked up love life. I just wanna be single." 

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David Pascoe Makes His Move on Malia White
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"It’s just tough," Malia said of that moment with David. "Like, you think once you let him down once it’s over with. But, yeah, when he kept coming back, I was like, no, like, please don’t make this a regular thing. But he took it like a champ, and he was very respectful of it. So, you know, it was fine."

These days, Malia said that she doesn't keep in touch with Tom at all. As far as her current love life goes, she said, "I’m dating."

And just because things didn't work out with the yacht chef doesn't mean Malia wouldn't look for love at sea again. "I mean, I’m open to it. I mean, I’ll never say, like, 'I won’t date someone on a boat again.' I think in our industry, it makes the most sense for you to date someone in the industry. So I’m not against it. I’m not saying no," she shared. "I just think I needed time, like a little mourning period [laughs]."

Want more Below Deck Med? Season 6 airs Mondays at 9/8c on Bravo with early access to new episodes on Peacock.

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