“Going through a public breakup, that was difficult,” Bella, 36, told Hannah Ann Sluss on the Wednesday, April 29, episode of her and sister Brie Bella’s “The Bellas Podcast.” “What was tough about that was it came out before a season on air, so people thought it was a publicity stunt.”
The Total Bellas star and the former Bachelor contestant, 24, had similar experiences — Sluss was proposed to by Peter Weber during season 24 of the show and then dumped before the finale aired — and according to Nikki it is hard no matter how serious the relationship.
“Mine was different than yours because I was going through pain of, like, ‘No, this is real. I’m not lying!’” Nikki explained, noting that she “couldn’t imagine having to keep that in” and fake excitement over a possible finale engagement like the model did earlier this year.
Nikki, who is expecting her first child with fiancé Artem Chigvintsev, split from Cena, 43, in March 2018 and after a brief reconciliation, they called it quits in July for good. Despite time passing, the former wrestler is scared it’ll never be fully behind her.
“I’m always, constantly going to Brie, like, ‘Am I ever gonna get away from this?’” she told her listeners. “Artem will deal with stuff, and I even know that my ex-fiancé will deal with stuff, and it’s hard.”
The Dancing With the Stars alum revealed that it’s been almost three years since the split, but “we still have it.”
“I feel like I’m gonna have this triangle for the rest of my life,” she admitted. “So I just try to have this shell that fights it all, because it used to get to me really bad, for a long time.”
Following her broken engagement, Nikki’s family took down photos that included Cena in solidarity, but now, the athlete is ready to move forward — and show off the past memories.
“I won’t let my Nana take certain photos down that John’s in because those are memories and he’s an amazing man,” she explained. “Just keep it on the wall, I don’t mind. Artem doesn’t mind. I’m not here to erase memories.”
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