Bachelor Nation drama continues. Following the first Black Bachelor Matt James‘ season, there has been one scandal after another, from longtime host Chris Harrison getting shown to the door to racist posts of the final rose recipient, Rachael Kirkconnell, resurfacing.
Following the revelation of the posts, James broke up with Kirkconnell. But they were spotted out together again, making many believe that their romance was back on. James, 29, bought a ticket for Kirkconnell, 24, to “stay with him,” a source close to the contestant tells People of her visit.
“Matt and Rachael have FaceTimed every day since March, besides one week in between the finale and After the Final Rose when they were processing the photos scandal,” the source reveals.
An insider tells People: “He's been telling her he loves her and has never felt this way for anyone else before. After the scandal, he said it would take time for them to work on themselves separately, but he wanted to get back together one day and still pictured a life for them together, with a family and everything.”
Kirkconnell, the insider says, “understood why he publicly said he couldn't see a future with her because of what she had done and the responsibility he felt as the first Black Bachelor, and she supported him.”
She was devastated when reports emerged that he saw her as a friend. The insider adds that Kirkconnell “heard he'd been talking to a woman named Grace two days before flying her out to N.Y.C.”
Grace Amerling spoke to blogger Reality Steve, claiming that she and James had briefly dated and that he invited her to spend the night with him “out of the blue” before Kirkconnell’s visit.
She says: “I just felt like Rachael was so in love with him and for him to be trying to contact me and hang out with me – someone he's had past romantic relationships with – two days prior in Miami… I felt like I had to say something for Rachael's sake.”
She adds, “Rachael is the real victim here.”
Kirkconnell was ready to be “all in,” but feels that James had “broken her trust,” the insider says, adding “she doesn't know if she'll ever be able to trust him again.”