Following her May split from fiancé Ben Higgins, Lauren Bushnell had an unlikely source of comfort: his ex JoJo Fletcher.
“She reached out, which was really sweet,” Bushnell, 27, told Us Weekly exclusively of Fletcher, who was Higgins’ runner-up on season 20 of the Bachelor. “Her and I talked before and I shared that we were having struggles. She texted me the day that the news or whatever broke just to check in, which I thought was really nice. We talked a little bit.”
Throughout her relationship with Higgins, Bushnell struggled to move past the fact that her former fiancé had told her and Fletcher, 26, separately that he loved them before ultimately proposing to Bushnell. “I did carry some resentment toward him, not with JoJo,” she told Us in October 2016. “I had such a hard time trying to understand and put myself in his shoes, and finally was like, ‘I will never understand. I will never be the Bachelor.’”
Bushnell notes that the former couple have been open about their issues to friends and fans alike. “I don’t think Ben and I, either of us were really private,” she told Us at SodaStream’s Taste Test event for National Hydration Day on Thursday, June 22. “I mean, on our TV show we talked about going to couples counseling. We were never hush hush about it.”
Despite the end of the relationship, Bushnell isn’t seeking out a new romance anytime soon. “I’m not looking to force anything,” she explains. “I think I really really wanted to settle down. I’m just taking the mindset that I’m going to take it day by day. If something happens, great. If not, then that is how it’s supposed to be. I’m just trying to focus on myself and my blog, focus on my projects and friendships and family. If something comes from that, great. I’ll be so happy.
The former flight attendant adds that even if she does find herself in a romance, she’ll take a very different approach than her relationship with Higgins. “Even if something does come, I really want to take things slow,” she says. “Because obviously on the Bachelor, things don’t move slow.”
One place she won’t be finding love: Bachelor in Paradise. “I don’t know how I’ll feel in a year or six months from now, but right now, today, I’m not ready for that,” she tells Us of the ABC series’ spinoff show. “Part of the last chapter of my life was so reality TV focused and it stressed me out. I can’t think like that because I’m just trying to move forward and kind of close that chapter, if you will.”
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