During a recent appearance on the “Click Bait with Bachelor Nation” podcast, Bunn opened up about dating the 39-year-old Selling Sunset star before he appeared on the ABC franchise. The North Carolina native, 42, met Stause in New York after he returned from playing professional basketball in Germany. He explained that he “didn’t really know anything other than basketball” as he tried to “figure out” his path.
“I met Chrishell and fell in love,” Bunn, who vied for DeAnna Pappas on season 4 of The Bachelorette, recalled on the Thursday, January 21, episode. “I was like, ‘This is the most adult relationship I’ve ever been in’ … even now.”
As he called their relationship “incredible,” the Bachelor Pad alum said that their romance was short-lived as she got approached to be on The Bachelor. “I gotta give Chrishell all the credit in the world. She came to me — and I don’t know if it broke any kind of legal agreement — but she said, ‘Look, this is what’s going on in my life. I feel like this is what’s best for me and I want to pursue this avenue if it comes for me,’” he explained. “And I wished her well [by saying], ‘Hey, I totally understand. We just met. We’ve only been dating a very short period of time. If it doesn’t work out, maybe we’ll see each other again.’”
The Bachelor in Paradise alum was “disappointed” by the breakup but reiterated that they hadn’t been dating very long.
“For me, in my life, of course I’m going to fall hard for her. But you know, she was very open when we started dating. She was coming off of a really bad experience with someone in New York and she was very open about her expectations of our relationship,” he shared. “She was very strong-willed in her communication about, ‘Hey, this is where I’m at and if you’re okay with that, I would love to spend time with you. But if not, I totally get it — you have to do what’s best for you.’ So when we had that conversation, I didn’t have any legs to stand on outside of saying, ‘Hey, I wish you the best.’”
Bunn joined The Bachelorette in 2008 then dated Stause again for “two years” after being eliminated from the show. During their relationship, he recalled learning “a lot about communication.”
Stause was married to Justin Hartley from October 2017 until their November 2019 split when the This Is Us actor filed for divorce. More than one year later, Us Weekly confirmed that their separation was finalized. “Both parties entered into a confidential settlement as to terms of the divorce, including spousal support,” a source told Us on January 13.
Hartley, 43, went on to date his former The Young and the Restless costar Sofia Pernas. After Stause was rumored to be dating her married Dancing With the Stars partner, Gleb Savchenko, she confirmed her relationship with fellow pro Keo Motsepe in December 2020.
A source told Us exclusively that Stause and Motsepe, 31, have “leaned” on each other as she worked through her divorce and he dealt with the death of his mother. “She was able to relate to his recent loss because she lost both of her parents to cancer, so she completely sympathizes with what Keo’s going through,” the insider explained earlier this month. “She’s totally there for him 100 percent. … They really do have a great relationship.”
The source revealed that the duo’s romance has “blossomed pretty quickly,” adding, “Their relationship has grown a lot further than where it was a few months ago. … [Chrishell] clearly has strong feelings for him. Keo worships the ground she walks on — he is so wrapped around her finger.”