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Kaitlyn Bristowe Felt ‘Used Professionally’ by Shawn Booth: He Was ‘Hanging On Until His Gym Opened’

A candid conversation about money has led to a confession from Kaitlyn Bristowe. During a recent appearance on longtime love Jason Tartick’s podcast, “Trading Secrets,” the former Bachelorette admitted that she believes her ex-fiancé, Shawn Booth, “used” her for professional gain.

Related: Biggest Feuds in ‘Bachelor’ History

After joking that Tartick, whom she got engaged to in 2021, was “trying to get headlines,” Bristowe, 37, got real about the power dynamic between a lead in the ABC franchise and their “winner.”

“This is all just from my point of view and from how I felt and things that I saw. It doesn’t mean they’re right or wrong, but would you or would you not agree that when couples come off the show — whether it was a Bachelor and the woman who picked or Bachelorette and the guy she picked that — that is a really hard foundation to start on and a power struggle?” the Dancing With the Stars champ asked.

Kaitlyn Bristowe Felt ‘Used Professionally’ by Shawn Booth: He Was ‘Hanging On Until His Gym Opened’
Shawn Booth and Kaitlyn Bristowe Aurora Rose/Starpix/Shutterstock

Tartick, 34, agreed, adding that “personally, professionally [and] financially” it is “close to impossible” for a couple to last on the foundation set by The Bachelor.

Related: Kaitlyn Bristowe and Shawn Booth's Relationship Timeline: Why They Split

“So I think men sometimes get emasculated by the Bachelorette coming off [the show with] all these opportunities. They’re like, ‘We want Kaitlyn there and well, Shawn can come too,’ or ‘Maybe not. Maybe it’s just Kaitlyn or it’s the two of us together.’ It was always if I was there, then he was invited,” Bristowe explained. “And I think that on top of already feeling emasculated on the show where you’re not the [only] one and there’s other relationships building and you thought it was you the whole time and then you realize it wasn’t — how does the relationship even work after that? I don’t know. It’s hard.”

Bristowe and Booth announced their split in November 2018, more than three years after fans watched them get engaged on her 2015 season of The Bachelorette.

“But it was, like, getting down to the end where we both just didn’t see it going anywhere,” she continued to Tartick. “It felt like he was hanging on until his gym opened. And that’s where I felt used professionally.”

Bristowe and Booth — a personal trainer who opened his gym in Nashville in 2018 — have exchanged different stories about their relationship over the years. Back in November 2021, he said he doesn’t believe their romance was “true love.”

“I think love is a loose term, like, looking back at it. … I guess it wasn’t [true love] because we’d still be together if it was,” Booth said on the “Austin AF” podcast. “Of course, you’re thinking it’s love. But you’re put in a situation where you’re completely secluded from the world. You can’t talk to your friends, you can’t talk to your family. You can’t watch TV. You don’t have the internet. I mean, you’re there for 12 weeks, you’re trying to, like, just figure out your emotions and your feelings. And you have this person that you’re kind of going through the process with.”

He went on to call it “disrespectful” that Bristowe moved on with Tartick in early 2019.

“Everybody deals with breakups in a different way. That was her way of dealing with a breakup — getting right into it and wanting to share it with the world,” he said. “We weren’t together she was able to do whatever she wanted to do. So it didn’t really matter how I felt. The biggest takeaway I took from that was, ‘OK, this is, like, a good move that we ended.’ Let’s rip off the band-aid completely.”

One month later, Bristowe reacted to Booth’s comments on Us Weekly’s “Here for the Right Reasons” podcast.

Related: ‘Bachelorette’ Contestants Who Won 1st Impression Rose: Where Are They Now

“I didn’t read it. People told me about it, but it actually just made me a little sad because he had every opportunity to just be happy for me and be happy at where he’s at in life. And he just still seems a little bitter,”she said in December 2021. “And I was just confused by that because it’s been three years and I thought maybe he would just, you know, we’d want each other to be happy. … It made me sad that he said he didn’t think it was real love or we’d still be together.”

More recently, she revealed that after both staying in Nashville post-breakup, she’s nearly crossed paths with Booth “three times in the last three months” after “years” without a run-in.

“It hasn’t been [where] we’re, like, right there and could say hi, it was more like he was in a distance,” she said on “Not Skinny But Not Fat” in January, adding that Booth was recently on the same flight as Tartick — but the two men didn’t interact.

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