All for the cameras? Arie Luyendyk Jr. thinks that it can be difficult to turn a showmance into a real-life romance on The Bachelor because of the show’s unusual concept.
“It’s such a difficult — I hate to call it process — but it is a difficult show,” the Bachelor alum, 38, said on the Wednesday, June 10, episode of the “Couple Things With Shawn and Andrew” podcast. “And that’s probably why you find that a lot of people don’t make it is because it’s just so taxing emotionally.”
He added, “It’s just, like, it’s not natural to have two people that you [have], at the end, and then have to break up with one person and get engaged to another person an hour later. It’s just so weird. It’s, like, no wonder it barely works.”
However, Luyendyk Jr. isn’t completely writing off the show’s formula for finding love. The race car driver met his wife, Lauren Burnham, on season 22 of The Bachelorette. The Netherlands native said that it felt like “a little bit of fate” that they came together on the show, but revealed that he wasn’t sure at first that the 28-year-old Virginia native actually liked him.
“I didn’t think she was that into me the whole beginning of the show, so I kind of let other relationships develop and then it got toward the end and I was like ‘Oh dang! She actually really likes me,’” he recalled. “And then it was just like, our relationship bloomed so late in that whole Bachelor world that, that’s why the ending got a little mixed up.”
Burnham, who also appeared as a guest on the podcast, said that it “takes time to build trust” with another person, adding that “it’s so hard to do that in such a short amount of time.”
Luyendyk Jr. felt the pressure when he narrowed down his final two on his season to Burnham and Becca Kufrin, to whom he gave his final rose. However, he changed his mind and went back to his runner-up, Burnham.
The former ABC personality told Us Weekly in May that being a Bachelor lead is no easy task.
“And I’ve got to say as a Bachelor, I feel like you’re almost set up to fail,” he said at the time. “It’s, like, a recipe for disaster. So, if there is a normal happy ending, like a Sean Lowe, Catherine [Giudici] ending, you’re almost surprised.”
Although Luyendyk Jr. had a rocky start on The Bachelor, he eventually found his happy ending with Burnham. The couple got engaged in 2018 and married one year later in Hawaii in January 2019. They welcomed their first daughter, Alessi, in May 2019.